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Inspiring leadership

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Donald K. Rose, a native of Pitcairn, retired last week as chairman of the board of trustees of St. Lawrence University. He leaves a thriving university where he worked closely with retired president Daniel F. Sullivan and current president William L. Fox. His tenure at SLU began as a student after graduating from Harrisville Central School. Mr. Rose, a physics major at SLU, earned a doctorate in 1971 from Stanford.

While the university’s chairman, he oversaw construction of a new student center, a science center and the beginning of a large dormitory project in the middle of the campus. Big projects did not daunt Mr. Rose, who managed factory construction, procurement and installation of automation systems for Intel, the world’s largest computer chip developer and manufacturer.

When St. Lawrence honored Mr. Rose with an alumni citation in 2004, he told fellow alumni that “it was a big deal for me to come here from Pitcairn.”

Mr. Rose, who wrote his doctoral thesis at Stanford University, Palo Alto, Calif., on microchip superconductivity, praised the “vibrancy” of the academic culture — especially in the physics department — when he attended SLU.

“I’ve discovered that this campus still has an unbelievable excitement and vibrancy,” he said when awarded the citation.

He leaves a campus that still has excitement and vibrancy, filled with new buildings, and led by an energetic president.

The north country and the thousands of students in our high schools owe Donald Rose more than simple admiration for his six patents and 75 publications and presentations over his career at Intel, a company that became the center of the rise of the microchip during his tenure.

The native of Pitcairn moved beyond Intel and gave St. Lawrence students something other than a microchip to operate computers. He inspired a first-class institution dedicated to education.

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