University Presidents

George F. Simmons<br />




In 1934 Simmons graduated from the University of Chicago with a PhD in zoology and began his career at the University of Montana-Missoula as the assistant professor of zoology. Two years later, he was appointed president of the university. Simmons oversaw the bulk of the WPA beautification and building projects on campus. He retired from the university in 1941and returned to his studies in zoology.

Ernest O Melby<br />




ERNEST O. MELBY 1941-1945
In 1928 Melby received his doctorate in education from the University of Minnesota. Melby taught high school, became a principal and eventually superintendent of schools in Minnesota. He later served on the faculty of the education school at the University of Minnesota. In 1941, he became president of the University of Montana-Missoula. During his tenure Melby oversaw the prewar planning on campus. In 1945, he left Montana to teach at the University of New York.

James McCain<br />




JAMES A. McCAIN 1945-1950
McCain received his doctorate in education from Stanford University in California and served in the United States Navy in the early days of World War II. He oversaw the University of Montana-Missoula post-war campus plan including building proposals and acquisition of lands. McCain was instrumental in the hiring of architect John Paul Jones, and in the development of the 1946 campus plan. In 1950, McCain left the university to become president of Kansas State College.

Carl McFarland<br />

CARL McFARLAND 1951-1958
McFarland was a three-time graduate of the University of Montana-Missoula earning his BA in 1926, MA in 1929 and LBB in 1930. In 1932 he graduated from Harvard Law School. McFarland inherited McCain’s post-war campus plan and with state funding was able to transform the plans into reality. He oversaw the construction of many new buildings and expanded the boundaries of campus. In 1958, McFarland left Montana to teach at the University of Virginia.