About The Lindley Award
The Lindley Award is presented each year to the graduating senior in the College of Letters, Arts & Social Sciences who is deemed the Outstanding Senior in scholarship and character. This is the highest award a student in the college can receive.
Established in 1962 by distinguished alumnus Ernest K. Lindley, the award was created as a memorial to his parents, Ernest Hiram and Elizabeth Kidder Lindley.
His father, Ernest Hiram Lindley, was president of the University of Idaho from 1917 to 1920. During those years, the university was not only the center of higher education in the state of Idaho, but the campus also served as a training facility for hundreds of soldiers preparing for World War I. The young recruits received vocational, mechanical and engineering training, while living amongst the regular student population. Lindley also successfully negotiated with the Union Pacific Railroad creating the “student specials” which for decades brought students from southern Idaho to the Moscow campus.
At the end of his father’s tenure, Ernest K. Lindley graduated from the University of Idaho, and then went on to become an internationally recognized figure in journalism and foreign affairs. He was a Rhodes Scholar and had a distinguished career as a reporter. He worked for the The Wichita Beacon, The New York Herald Tribune, The Washington Post, and in 1937, he began his long association with Newsweek magazine.
At Newsweek he was head of the Washington, DC bureau, and was well-known for his radio and television appearances on public affairs programs. In 1961, he became a special assistant to U. S. Secretary of State Dean Rusk and worked at the State Department until 1969.
During his years in Washington, Lindley and his wife Elizabeth became friends with Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt. Ernest K. Lindley was chosen as the authorized Roosevelt historian and wrote the first biography of him.
Finally, adding to many other honors, Ernest K. Lindley received an Honorary Doctor of Literature from the University of Idaho in 1960 and was inducted into the University’s Hall of Fame in 1967.