Robert B. Pamplin, Jr., PhD, DMin, '68 MBA, '72 Hon, '75 MEd

President/CEO R.B. Pamplin Corporation

Robert B. Pamplin, Jr. PhD

Robert B. Pamplin, Jr., whose ties to the University of Portland go back several decades, talks about “a red hot spark of enthusiastic excitement” on The Bluff. The University, he says, blends “important ingredients of faith and education with the qualities of being a whole person.” Pamplin, who earned master’s degrees in business and education from the University, has long been one of Oregon’s most creative and successful businessmen. He’s primarily known for his role as president and CEO of the R.B. Pamplin Corporation, a family-owned company with annual sales of about $650 million. He is the author of some 13 books and founder of the Portland Tribune, Columbian Empire Farms, and Your Northwest retail stores. Furthermore, he has served on Presidential and state commissions, and as chairman of the board of trustees for three colleges and the Portland Art Museum. His generosity over the years to the University of Portland helped establish the Dr. Robert B. Pamplin, Jr. School of Business and the Pamplin Professorship.

He earned an honorary doctorate at the University in 1972 and the University’s first Distinguished Business Alumnus Award in 1989. “The University of Portland has a unique quality of trust and purpose,” he notes. “It captures a significance of building emotional spirit and a commitment of value of character. Those are significant ingredients to illustrate the importance of a university. Because of that, it causes people to want to link up to the mission and make what the University stands for possible.”