Cornell University

Founding Faculty

vision · commitment · determination

Vernon Jensen

Vernon Jensen

"It was my belief from the beginning that it was intended by the framers of the School, and as it was embodied in the legislation creating the School, that collective bargaining was to be the heart and soul of the School."  Full Story


Jean McKelvey

Jean McKelvey

Jean loved telling the story of her first arbitration when she "walked into the room and there was nothing but men there; one looked up and said, 'Oh, you're the secretary' and I said, 'No, I'm the arbitrator'."
Full Story


Milton Konvitz

Milton Konvitz

I saw the U.S. Constitution as it has been interpreted as a magnificent depository of our ideals, both individual and social.
Full Story


Maurice Neufeld

Maurice Neufeld

"Keep in touch. I expect you to carry that torch, which in the ancient games, was passed on from runner to runner."   Full Story

leading The Distinguished Founding Faculty of the ILR School were true pioneers. They took the broad New York State Legislative mandate (1944) that created the School and forged ground-breaking academic programs for students, for practitioners, for labor, and for management. The Founding Faculty accomplished this feat in the absence of any educational models of a full ILR undergraduate and graduate program to draw upon. With vision, commitment, and determination, they shaped and reshaped resident, extension, and library programs in the face of diverse, often contradictory, crosscurrents in labor-management relations of the time. These pages are designed to introduce and honor the legacy and enduring contributions of the ILR Founding Faculty.

-Edward Lawler
Dean of the ILR School, 1997-2005