Alumni Honorees

James R. GriesemerJames R. Griesemer

B.A. Political Science, 1966
M.A. Public Affairs, 1971


One of the early graduates of what is now the M.P.A. program at NIU, Professor Griesemer has achieved national stature both as a public administrator and city manager, and then as a teacher, writer, and leader in the academic community.

While still completing his graduate program, Griesemer was appointed city manager of Lake Park, Florida, one of the youngest city managers in the U.S. He subsequently served as the city manager of Pompton Plains, New Jersey (1970-72), Downers Grove, Illinois (1972-83), and Aurora, Colorado (1984-90). During his city management career, he received numerous national and regional awards for excellence, including a National Innovation Award for his work in public finance. In 1989 he was named Outstanding Public Administrator in Colorado.

In 1990, Dr. Griesemer joined the University of Denver as CFO where he helped lead the financial turnaround of the University. From1994-2004 he served as Dean of DU’s Daniels College of Business, a period when the college achieved national stature. He currently is Professor and Dean Emeritus of the Daniels College and directs the University's Strategic Issues Program.

Griesemer is the author of two books and numerous articles.  Among his many community contributions has been his service as a board member of the Daniels Fund, Colorado's largest foundation; the Iliff School of Theology; the Colorado Symphony and various civic committees and task forces.