Bob and Diane Greenlee were selected by the Greenlee School’s faculty and advisory council as the recipients of the school’s 2015 Schwartz Award.
The couple, whose name has represented Iowa State’s journalism and communication program since 1998, both graduated from the university—Bob with a bachelor’s in distributed studies in 1963 and a master’s in journalism and mass communication in 1968 and Diane with a bachelor’s in English and speech in 1966.
Their fondness for Iowa State began as students when Bob managed the campus radio station, KISU, and introduced its first woman disc jockey, Diane.
After they graduated and moved to Boulder, Colo., the couple bought a bankrupt AM radio station and turned it into the number one station in the Denver metro market. Since then their success has continued, owning six stations and launching a dozen new companies.
Their dedication to and generous support of journalism education transformed one of the university’s oldest programs into the university’s first named school—The Greenlee School of Journalism and Communication. The two also founded the Greenlee School’s Advisory Council, of which they are permanent members, and have also served on the LAS Dean’s Advisory Council.
“Without Bob and Diane, especially in the early years of my arrival here in 2003, we would not be a top communications program in the country with a 800-plus enrollment in all our degree programs,” said Greenlee School Director Michael Bugeja. “In some sense, the Greenlees should have won this high honor years ago. But the fact is, our graduates—like the Greenlees—are so distinguished that this new honor comes in 2015. That’s what Bob and Diane helped build—a premier program that we all can be so proud of.”
The James W. Schwartz Award is the Greenlee School’s highest honor and recognizes distinguished service to journalism. Past winners include Christine Romans, Roy Reiman and Hugh Sidey.
“Diane and I were both astonished and extremely humbled,” said Bob Greenlee, who was advised by Schwartz as a journalism student at Iowa State. “Our sincere thanks and gratitude goes out to all those who have made this honor possible.”
The couple will be presented with the Schwartz Award on Friday, Oct. 30, following the school’s advisory council meeting.
Since graduating, Bob and Diane have also received several other awards recognizing their contributions to Iowa State, including a LAS Citation of Merit, LAS College Service Award and the university’s Order of the Knoll Campanile Award.