It is with great sorrow that we announce that Dr. Leon Rand, former chancellor of IU Southeast, passed away Sunday, February 19, 2023 at the age of 92.
A native of Boston, Massachusetts, Rand earned a bachelor’s degree in chemistry from Northeastern University, M.A. and Ph.D. in organic chemistry from the University of Texas at Austin before completing a post-doctoral fellowship in the department of chemistry at Purdue University. Rand entered the faculty as an instructor of chemistry at Southern State College in Magnolia, Arkansas, before moving onto serve as a professor at the University of Detroit. In 1968, Rand moved onto Youngstown State University, where he was professor of chemistry, chairman of the Department of Chemistry (1968-1978), dean of graduate studies and research (1974-1981) and acting academic vice president in 1980. Rand then accepted a position as the vice chancellor for academic affairs at the University of North Carolina at Pembroke (1981-1986).
Rand was appointed chancellor of Indiana University Southeast in 1986 and successfully served during a time of notable campus and academic growth. Chief among his accomplishments at IU Southeast were an increase in enrollment of 40 percent and numerous building projects. More than $9 million in funds for scholarships and capital projects were raised. He envisioned the creation of an arts and cultural center on the IU Southeast campus and in 1991 launched fundraising efforts, bringing together foundations, business, and industrial contributors. The Paul W. Ogle Cultural and Community Center opened to the public in March 1996 with a performance by the Louisville Orchestra. With four diverse indoor theaters, an amphitheater and an art gallery, the Ogle Center attracts audiences from throughout southern Indiana and the greater Louisville area.
Additionally, Rand helped create Master of Business Administration and Master of Liberal Studies programs, expanded campus computer capabilities, and oversaw the establishment of a reciprocity program with the University of Louisville.
He was named professor and chancellor emeritus upon his retirement in 1996.
Rand has received many awards and recognitions throughout his career including the Outstanding Alumni Award from Northeastern University, Sagamore of the Wabash, Indiana Senate Certificate of Achievement, and Kentucky Colonel from the governor of Kentucky. Even in retirement, Rand remained active at Indiana University and in the community serving as special assistant to the chancellor at IUPUI, board member of the Senior Academy at IUPUI, and an active docent for the Indianapolis Museum of Art. Rand received the IU Bicentennial Medal in September 2019 in recognition of his distinguished service as chancellor of Indiana University Southeast.
Rand was preceded in death by his devoted and loving wife of 54 years, Marian Newton Rand who passed in 2012. Together, the couple raised three children, Debra Rand Perelman (Jeff), Paul Martin Rand (Diane) and Marta Rand Hexamer (Jay). He also leaves behind eight grandchildren: Julia Perelman, Jessica Perelman, Jackie Perelman; Elena Rodriguez Rand, Trevor Rodriguez Rand, Mason Rodriguez Rand, Ben Hexamer, and Eleanor Hexamer. Nearly 10 years ago, he met Phyllis Jean Schwartz, who was a loving partner until her death in September 2022, and was embraced by Phyllis’s extended family, including Dee Dee and Alvin Katzman, Wendy Schwartz and Lynn Quenemoen and their children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren.
A memorial service for Leon Rand will be held at All Souls Unitarian Church in Indianapolis, this Saturday, February 25, at 11:00 a.m. ET.
For more information: Leon Rand obituary.
Please keep the entire Rand family in your thoughts and prayers during this difficult time.