James William Maucker was UNI's fifth president; he served from 1950 through 1970. He succeeded Malcolm Poyer Price.
Maucker was born in Rock Island, Illinois, in 1912. He graduated magna cum laude in 1933 from Augustana College in Rock Island with a degree in chemistry. After working for a few months, he enrolled in graduate school at the University of Iowa, where he earned his M. A in education in 1936, and his Ph. D. in educational tests and measurements in 1940. He was an elementary and high school teacher in Omaha, Nebraska, from 1935 through 1937.
After receiving his Ph. D., Maucker moved to St. Louis, Missouri, where he worked as a specialist in tests and measurements for the public schools in 1941. Then he became an Assistant Professor of Elementary Education at the University of Missouri. Later he served as Assistant Superintendent of Schools in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. In 1944 he enlisted in the Navy and was a research specialist in the Bureau of Naval Personnel. From 1946 to 1950, Maucker was Dean of the School of Education at Montana State University. He and his wife, Helga, had three children.
The campus grew extensively during the Maucker years. Among the new buildings were Malcolm Price Laboratory School, Russell Hall, Rod Library, Gilchrist Hall, McCollum Science Hall, Maucker Union, Campbell Hall, Regents Complex, and the Towers.
UNI's name changed twice during Maucker's presidency; in 1961 it changed from the Iowa State Teachers College to the State College of Iowa, and then in 1967 the college became the University of Northern Iowa.
Maucker Union, constructed in 1969, was named for President Maucker in 1974.
He was succeeded by John J. Kamerick.
President Maucker died Tuesday, July 5, 2005 at Sartori Memorial Hospital in Cedar Falls at the age of 92.
Compiled by Susan Witthoft; edited by Gerald L. Peterson
Special Collections and University Archives