Pederson has worked for the university for a total of 29 years, joining the faculty as an assistant professor of physics in 1972. From 1978-83 he was chairman of the department. He was named associate dean for research and faculty development of what is now the J. William Fulbright College of Arts and Sciences in 1983, before being appointed as acting vice chancellor for academic affairs in 1985. He was appointed vice chancellor for finance and administration in 1998.
In a press release Friday, the University of Arkansas said Pederson played an integral role in the transformation of the U of A, overseeing campus growth and budget savings during his tenure.
"Don Pederson has been a key individual in the growth and development of the University of Arkansas," said Chancellor G. David Gearhart. "It has been his role to take the visions and plans of campus leaders and find the ways and means to make them a reality. The University of Arkansas would not be where it is now - with record enrollment, a record number of new and restored facilities, and a record budget surplus - without Don Pederson.
"I have worked with many university administrators through the years, but none more capable, hardworking and committed to quality than Don Pederson. His institutional knowledge and experience will be impossible to replace. He told me a year ago that he was thinking about retirement, and I appreciate all he has done for me and the University of Arkansas through many years of incredible leadership."