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Theodore U. Horger 1961

Theodore Horger graduated from Lehigh University with a bachelor of science degree in engineering mechanics in 1961. While at Lehigh, Ted was a member of the Tau Beta Pi Honor Society, a prestigious national society for engineering students. He continued his education by earning a master of science degree from New York University in 1963.

Ted’s career began on an international note. He volunteered for two years for the Peace Corps, teaching courses at the University of Concepcion’s School of Engineering in Concepcion, Chile. After returning to the United States, he worked for the research unit at AT&T and Bell Laboratories. At Bell Labs, Ted worked on fascinating and highly impactful research projects that included designing telephone facilities capable of enduring the potential damage of nuclear weapons. His career flourished at AT&T, where he rose to the level of senior engineer. He remained a dedicated employee until his retirement in 2003.

In addition to engineering, Ted’s passion also included the arts, which he enjoyed as an alumnus by frequently visiting Zoellner Arts Center. Ted’s love of the visual arts, music, and theatre manifested itself in his philanthropy as well. Upon his passing in 2013, his estate established the Theodore U. Horger ’61 Visual & Performing Arts Endowed Scholarship to support the highly creative students in the departments of art, architecture and design (AAD), music, and theatre. 

Ted’s generous estate gift also established the Theodore U. Horger ’61 Endowed Artist-in-Residence for the Performing and Visual Arts to bring visiting faculty artists to the university. A visiting artist will be in residence rotating each year among the AAD, music, and theatre departments. Akin Babatunde, a 40-year theater professional whose career spans off-Broadway, regional theatre, film, and television, inaugurated this artist-in-residence program in 2016. Christopher Gross, head of cello at the Thurnauer School of Music and teaching artist with the New York Philharmonic Orchestra, was selected as the next Horger Artist-in-Residence. In addition to the lasting legacy that Ted created for the arts at Lehigh, he was a generous member of the Asa Packer Society, supporting the Lehigh Fund and the programs and operations of the Zoellner Arts Center. 

Ted grew up in Taylor, Pennsylvania, and spent his retirement serving in various volunteer capacities in the communities where he lived, including Princeton and Plainfield, New Jersey. He is survived by his siblings, Paul, James, and Louise Hawk, and several nieces and nephews.