case western reserve university




exhibit title: Our Presidents


John S. Millis

President, Western Reserve University, 9/1/1949-6/30/1967


B.S., University of Chicago, 1924, Mathematics and Astronomy

M.S., University of Chicago, 1927, Physics

Ph.D., University of Chicago, 1931, Physics



University Awards

Western Reserve University dedicated its new science building the John Schoff Millis Science Center, 1962.

Case Institute of Technology awarded Millis the honorary Doctor of Laws, 1964.

Case Western Reserve University awarded Millis the University Medal in honor of his significant contributions to the University, higher education, and to society, 1977.

The John Schoff Millis Memorial Fund was established by friends and family to benefit the Millis Science Center, 1988.



Mathematics Master, Howe School, Howe, Indiana, 1924-1926

Instructor in Physics, Lawrence College, Appleton, Wisconsin, 1927-1929

Director, Underwood Astronomical Observatory, Appleton, Wisconsin, 1927-1937

Fellow in Physics, University of Chicago, 1929-1930

Assistant Professor of Physics, Lawrence College, 1930-1932

Research Associate, Institute of Paper Chemistry, Appleton, Wisconsin, 1931-1937

Associate Professor of Physics, Lawrence College, 1932-1934

Professor of Physics, Lawrence College, 1934-1941

Dean, Lawrence College, 1936-1941

Dean of Administration, Lawrence College, 1938-1941

President, University of Vermont and State Agricultural College, 1941-1949

Chancellor, Case Western Reserve University, 1967-1969

Vice President and Director, National Fund for Medical Education, 1969-1971

Chancellor Emeritus, Case Western Reserve University, 1969-1988

Trustee, Case Western Reserve University, 1970-1975

Honorary Trustee, Case Western Reserve University, 1975-1988


University Numbers
  1949/50 1966/67
Enrollment 17,980 12,562
Number of faculty 930 1,723
Research expenses $955,400 $11,017,200


Case joined Western Reserve University in a cooperative University Health Service for students of both institutions.


125th Anniversary Campaign began. It raised over $1.1 million to construct Beaumont Hall, Claud Foster Hall, Freiberger Library, Newton D. Baker Memorial Building, and to renovate Thwing Hall for a student union.
The United States entered the war in Korea.
A single legislative body, the Faculty of Arts and Sciences, was created, with authority over instruction in Arts and Sciences wherever offered in the University.
The School of Business was established.
Moondog Coronation Ball, first rock and roll concert, was held in Cleveland.
School of Architecture was closed. The Department of Architecture remained in operation until 1972.


Cleveland College moved to University Circle from downtown Cleveland.


Federal Aid Highway Act was enacted, formally beginning the Interstate Construction Program.
University Circle Development Foundation, later University Circle Inc., was established.
Sputnik I became the first artificial satellite to orbit the Earth.
Cooperative program established between Case and Western Reserve University. Case assumed responsibility for undergraduate and graduate instruction in the field of astronomy, and WRU assumed responsibility in the field of geology.


The Distinguished Faculty Fund, an annual fundraising campaign for faculty programs, was launched.


The University Medical Center Campaign began. It raised over $76 million for construction, expansion, renovation, and endowment of buildings for Medicine, Dentistry, Nursing, the Institute of Pathology, and University Hospitals.


President John F. Kennedy was assassinated.
A joint program in philosophy was established between Case and Western Reserve University.


The Case and WRU Trustees authorized establishment of the Case-Reserve Study Commission, which ultimately recommended federation of the two institutions.
First U.S. combat troops arrived in Vietnam.
In Cleveland, Carl Stokes was elected the first Black mayor of a major American city.


Regional Population
  1950 1960
Cleveland 914,808 876,050


Caution should be taken when comparing financial data across long periods of time. Accounting practices have changed substantially during CWRU's nearly 200-year history. In compiling these numbers, we have relied on the most authoritative contemporaneous sources available.

Information was compiled by staff of the Case Western Reserve University Archives, March 2007.