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August LeRoy Strand

August LeRoy Strand was appointed as the ninth president of Oregon State College in the fall of 1942 and led the college through both World War II as well as the post-war period of extensive growth in students and facilities that followed.

August L. Strand was born on February 12, 1894 in Victoria, Texas but moved to Montana soon after the turn of the century.  He earned a B.S. degree in entomology from Montana State College in 1917 and both an M.S. degree (1925) and a Ph.D. degree (1928) from the University of Minnesota.  Strand returned to Montana State College in 1931 as both a professor and the head of the entomology department; six years later he was appointed as the college's president (1937-1942).

Strand arrived at Oregon State College at a time when the war effort was causing student and faculty ranks to drop. Following the war, enrollment swelled to 8,000 students, and twenty-five major buildings were constructed during his nineteen-year presidency.  In addition to establishing the School of Humanities and Social Science and the School of Business and Technology, Strand also added the physical education major and both M.S. and Ph.D. degrees for the School of Engineering.  As a capstone to Strand's presidency, Oregon State College was officially renamed Oregon State University on March 6, 1961.

Strand remained in Corvallis after his retirement in 1961 and later served a four-year term on the Benton County Commission (1965-1968).  He died on April 27, 1980 at age 86.

Related Resources: President's Office Records, A.L. Strand Oral History Collection, Fred M. Shideler Papers, Memorabilia Collection, Oral History Interview.

Black and white photographic portrait of August LeRoy Strand.

August LeRoy Strand, 1947.

Black and white photograph of August LeRoy Strand with a Voyager 150 plane.

August LeRoy Strand with a Voyager 150 plane, 1947.