The Presidents Volume 1: Dwight G. Rider

Dwight Rider, fifth president of the Iowa State Board of Education (later the State Board of Regents), served on the Board from 1949 to 1956. Preceded by Henry Shull, Rider assumed the Board presidency in 1951 and served in that capacity until his retirement from the Board in 1956.

Born October 29, 1897, Rider attended West Waterloo High School and enrolled at Grinnell College in 1916. A year later, Rider enlisted as a private in the First Iowa Field Artillery, which became part of the 126th Field Artillery during the First World War He was discharged as a lieutenant and enrolled at the State University of Iowa in 1919.

Rider was a member of the Phi Delta Phi and Phi Gamma Delta fraternities during his time at the University of Iowa. He graduated with a law degree in June, 1923 and began practicing law in Fort Dodge. In 1942, he was elected judge of the 11th Judicial District of Iowa. 

Governor William Beardsley appointed Rider to the State Board of Education in 1949. Following his service to the Board, Rider again served as a District Court Judge in Fort Dodge. In addition, he served as the president of the Fort Dodge Chamber of Commerce and was a member of the Elks Lodge and the American Legion. Rider died in 1965.

Regents Hall, the first of four new dormitories at the newly-named State College of Iowa (UNI), was renamed Rider Hall in his honor in May, 1964. The four dormitories, previously known as the Regents Complex, were named in honor of Rider, Shull, Harry Hagemann, and Alfred Noehren – all presidents of the Board. The Regents Complex dining center was renamed the Redeker Center in honor of Board president Stanley Redeker in 1974. Shull, Rider, Hagemann, Noehren, and Redeker served consecutively as Board presidents from 1941 until 1973.