UNI to house papers of U.S. Senator Chuck Grassley, announces endowed professorship

UNI to house papers of U.S. Senator Chuck Grassley, announces endowed professorship

CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa is proud to announce two historic gifts to the institution from Senator and Mrs. Chuck Grassley - a gift of the papers and other historical materials from the Senator’s time in the U.S. Senate to the UNI Rod Library, and a gift of an endowed professorship in the Department of Political Science. Together, these gestures honor the extensive legacy of Senator Grassley’s career in public service and continue the longstanding support Senator and Mrs. Grassley have provided to the University of Northern Iowa.

A proud UNI alumnus, Senator Chuck Grassley is the longest-serving U.S. senator from Iowa, and the longest-serving Republican senator in history. He is the most senior member of the U.S. Senate and currently serves as the president pro tempore emeritus of the United States Senate. 

“We are most grateful for Senator and Mrs. Grassley’s time-honored commitment to the University of Northern Iowa,” said University of Northern Iowa President Mark Nook. “The gifts of papers and endowed professorship are a tremendous testament to the value of our mission to educate curious and engaged future leaders, committed to public service. They provide an unmatched resource for students, faculty and the public, and provide a clear example of the impact of one person’s life who dedicated himself in service to his state and country. The gifts also create a unique opportunity to build a lasting tribute to Senator Grassley's distinguished career and lifelong commitment to civic education and public service.”

UNI’s Rod Library currently houses Senator Grassley’s political papers from his time in the Iowa House of Representatives and the U.S. House of Representatives through 1980. The existing collection comprises constituent correspondence, agency reports, and congressional documents and files, along with historic materials from the Third District. The new gift, covering his time in the U.S. Senate, will complete the collection of papers from his entire career in public office, providing researchers, faculty and students a rich source of materials spanning a distinguished career of more than 60 years. All materials will be delivered to the University upon conclusion of Senator Grassley’s service in the United States Senate.  

Chuck Grassley

“We hope scholars and students will use my Senate papers as part of their research and teaching. With this gift, we hope to support the teaching and research mission of the University of Northern Iowa, allowing scholars and students the academic freedom to explore American government and public policy,” said Senator Grassley.

Donna Hoffman

Donna R. Hoffman, PhD, has been named the Chuck and Barbara Grassley Professor of Political Science. A nationally-known scholar of presidential rhetoric, Hoffman teaches courses on American political institutions, including the presidency and Congress, and is frequently sought out by media throughout the state and nation for her insights and nonpartisan analysis of politics. As the Chuck and Barbara Grassley Professor of Political Science, Hoffman will provide programming to UNI students and the broader community related to her scholarship and the importance of Congress and public service.

“I am honored to be named the inaugural Chuck and Barbara Grassley Professor of Political Science. Senator Grassley’s commitment to public service is longstanding, and has its roots at Iowa State Teachers College, now University of Northern Iowa. Senator and Mrs. Grassley’s gift confirms their trust in our commitment to preparing the next generation of public servants and citizens who understand that the continued functioning of our democracy isn’t automatic, but requires concerted effort and education,” said Hoffman.

“It’s more important than ever that students learn to rigorously analyze political issues and develop the ability to discuss them with others, including those with whom they disagree,” said Senator Grassley. “Barbara and I hope the endowed professorship will help the Department of Political Science continue its excellent work in promoting civil discourse and preparing the next generation of Iowa’s leaders. We wish Dr. Hoffman the best in her teaching and her scholarly endeavors as the inaugural Grassley Professor.”