University of Illinois System

Distinguished Service Medallion 1984


Farm leader, president of the Illinois Farm Bureau for 13 years, and member of the board of the American Farm Bureau for 12 years, who was instrumental in the adoption of Food for Century III program. He was awarded the Medallion at the Urbana-Champaign commencement, 1984.


Board of Trustees Minutes
April 19, 1984


Since 1973, the trustees have conferred the Distinguished Service Medallion Award upon “individuals whose contributions to the growth and development of the University of Illinois, through extraordinary service or significant benefaction, have been of unusual significance.”

The Distinguished Service Medallion Award Committee, consisting of the trustees listed below, recommends as the recipient of the Medallion for 1984 the following individual :

HAROLD B. STEELE. Elected president of the Illinois Farm Bureau in 1970, his thirteen years in office saw an increase in membership of that organization from 191,000 to more than 315,000. Although his study of agriculture at the University was interrupted by World War II, his support of University and College of Agriculture initiatives in the Illinois General Assembly has had an impact that will be felt for decades. Noteworthy among those efforts was his role in support of the Food for Century III program through which more than $44 million has been dedicated to the construction of University facilities for teaching and research in agriculture and veterinary medicine at the Urbana-Champaign campus. Now returned to his farm in Bureau County, he has indicated continued interest and willingness to support those University programs that for so many years have benefited by his efforts.

The committee recommends that the award be presented at Commencement, May 13, at the Urbana-Champaign campus.

Presented by the Committee for the Trustees Distinguished Service Medallion

George W. Howard III,chairman               Nina T. Shepherd
Galey S. Day                                                 Paul Stone
Edmund R. Donoghue                                William D. Forsyth, Jr., ex officio

On motion of Dr. Donoghue, this recommendation was approved.