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Judith L. Bonner

The following biographical sketch was compiled at the time of induction into the Academy in 2014.


Judith (Judy) L. Bonner became the 28th President of The University of Alabama on November 1, 2012, having previously served as Provost and Executive Vice President for almost a decade. She is the first woman to be named president of Alabama’s flagship university, as well as the first woman to be named president of one of the 14 universities that make up the Southeastern Conference. Dr. Bonner is providing bold, visionary leadership for Alabama’s Capstone of Higher Education during a period of unprecedented growth both in size and quality. Today, The University of Alabama is widely considered the South’s premier student-centered, research university and one of the top 50 public universities in the country.

Dr. Bonner’s career at The University of Alabama also includes positions as a department chair, assistant academic vice president, special assistant to the president, dean and interim president. Prior to coming to The University of Alabama, she held faculty appointments in the Department of Pediatrics at UAB and in the Department of Medical Dietetics at The Ohio State University.

Dr. Bonner serves on the board of directors of the Chamber of Commerce of West Alabama, Tuscaloosa County Industrial Development Authority, National Merit Corporation and Air University. Her many personal accomplishments include Delta Gamma Cream Colored Rose Award, 2014; Algernon Sydney Sullivan Award, 2010; ODK Frances S. Summersell Award, 2010; Amanda Grace Taylor Watson Distinctive Image Award, 2007; and Carleton K. Butler Service to the University Award, 2006. In addition, The Ohio State University honored her with the induction into the Hall of Fame in 2013 and the Distinguished Alumna Award in 1995.

An Alabama native, Dr. Bonner grew up in Camden. Her childhood in rural Wilcox County instilled a great love and appreciation for Alabama’s many challenges and tremendous potential. Dr. Bonner attended The University of Alabama earning the Bachelor of Science in 1969 and the Master of Science in 1972. She earned her Ph.D. from The Ohio State University in 1976. Her degrees were in human nutrition and her research focused on nutritional needs of chronically ill children and eating disorders. Her research resulted in numerous publications.

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