Richard Scudder will be the first to say that his heart belongs to the University of Denver, where he spent his entire collegiate career, but his love of teaching goes back much further.
He spent four years in the U.S. Air Force as a Chinese interpreter and intelligence specialist, then earned his bachelor’s degree at the University of Colorado Boulder. He started out as a teacher at Cole Junior High School in Denver. He helped establish media and career education centers, while earning a master’s in educational media and a PhD in educational technology and instructional design at CU.
“I always thought I would enjoy teaching at the college level,” he said. After his PhD, however, Scudder accepted a management training role with Manville Corp., where he had interned as a doctoral student. He became familiar with DU through a corporate training partnership between Daniels and Manville.
“I accepted a one-year appointment at Daniels and never looked back,” he said. “Coming here was the best thing I’ve ever done.”
Scudder joined the Department of Management and taught a wide range of courses, including database management, business intelligence and project management. When Daniels created a Department of Information Technology and E-Commerce (ITEC), he moved there and helped design and teach the Management Information Systems curriculum.
Scudder also held several leadership positions. He served as chair of the ITEC department, was DU’s chief information officer from 1996 to 1998 and most recently was associate dean for graduate studies at Daniels from 2009 to 2013. In that role, he supervised all graduate degrees, graduate student services, career services, enrollment and recruitment and provided strategic oversight of technology for Daniels
Consulting with public and private companies was a natural fit for Scudder. He helped Coors Brewing Co., Citicorp Diners Club, the Colorado Association of Commerce and Industry and other organizations complete projects such as developing information systems metrics to designing systems development lifecycles. Since 1998, Scudder has taught as an adjunct professor at the University of California, Berkeley and Georgetown University.
In 2013, Scudder returned to the classroom in the Department of Business Information and Analytics. “I have enjoyed teaching and leadership,” he said. “I’ve had the opportunity to help shape the destiny of the University, the College and my department, which has been a lot of fun. But working with students, seeing their creative minds, was my absolute favorite part of the job.”
In June 2016, Scudder retired from Daniels. A man with many interests, he is taking up new and long-standing hobbies like hiking, travelling and singing—he is a member of the Evergreen Chorale.
Scudder is excited about the College’s future. “It’s been fascinating to see how our students have changed in the last 34 years, and today’s students are curious and bright and bring a broad perspective on life and the world,” he said. “What a wonderful evolution. In 1982, I started an adventure, and it’s been a great ride.”