As Rensselaer approaches its 200th year, the Institute is highlighting important milestones of how the world has been transformed by the achievements of Rensselaer people—past and present. This academic year, campuswide celebrations marking “the bridge to the bicentennial” will include the centennial anniversary of the Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering during Reunion & Homecoming Weekend Oct. 9-12, the culmination of activities highlighting the 50th anniversary of the Lally School of Management with a lecture by Steve Case on Oct. 21, the 15th anniversary at Rensselaer of President Shirley Ann Jackson in December, and the 10th anniversary of the Center for Biotechnology and Interdisciplinary Studies on Sept. 10, among other notable milestones and alumni and alumnae accomplishments.

Inside Rensselaer will highlight some of the remarkable achievements and anniversaries throughout the year.

50th Anniversary: J. Erik Jonsson ’22 Named Mayor of Dallas

Erik JonssonAlumni Hall of Fame member J. Erik Jonsson, Class of 1922, served as the mayor of Dallas from 1964 to 1971, and worked to improve the image and morale of the city in the wake of the Kennedy assassination. The former chairman of Texas Instruments, Jonsson is often credited as the person who gave shape to modern-day Dallas. He was a key leader in the development of the Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport, serving as chairman of the project from 1968 to 1976. Jonsson proposed a pioneer urban goal-setting program, Goals for Dallas, in 1964, and he served in the positions of chairman (1965-1976) and chairman emeritus (1976-92). Jonsson received numerous honors and awards during his life, including 10 honorary doctorates between 1959 and 1973. Jonsson died on Aug. 31, 1995, in Dallas.