FHSU celebrates university icon with naming of registrar’s suite

BY FHSU FOUNDATION

The registrar’s suite at Fort Hays State University now has a new name.

In a ceremony last week, those offices on the third floor of Picken Hall were named the Standlee V. Dalton Registrar’s Suite after the university’s legendary first registrar.

“When I think about the registrar’s office, I think about it representing the heart and integrity of this institution,” said Dr. Tisa Mason, FHSU president. “It gives us great joy to celebrate the work that this office does every single day and to honor the legacy of Mr. Dalton.”


The late Standlee V. Dalton was an icon of Fort Hays State. He joined the university faculty in 1935 as a biology instructor, teaching botany, biology, and bacteriology. As the university grew, there became a need for a full-time registrar. Dalton was named the first registrar of FHSU in 1937, and he served in that capacity until his retirement in 1971.

Dalton served Fort Hays State as registrar through four presidents and made friends with faculty, staff, administration, and students along the way. While in the biology department, Dalton shared an office with Lyman Wooster and stood as his best man at his wedding. Wooster went on to become the fourth president of FHSU in 1941.

Dalton was also friends with Dr. Morton Albertson and was considered a regular when it came to attending fossil digs with George Sternberg or helping in the apple orchard and faculty garden behind Custer Hall. Dalton was among the group that traveled to Gove County with Sternberg 70 years ago to successfully collect and bring the world-famous fish-within-a-fish fossil back to campus.

Dalton loved teaching biology and working with the FHSU students. Throughout his tenure as registrar, he continued to teach classes because he treasured his time teaching and surrounding himself with students. He also wanted to be on both sides of faculty and administration.

Dalton’s only son, Standlee H. “Bud” Dalton, was in attendance to commemorate the naming and dedication of his father in Picken Hall last week. Bud grew up on the FHSU campus, moving to Hays at the age of 2. Bud was ecstatic about the naming of the registrar’s suite in memory of his dad.

“If my dad were alive today, he would be super impressed and amazed at what Fort Hays State has become and all that it is,” Bud remarked. “It was such a small school back then and we couldn’t fathom the growth that it has had and its importance to the university system.”

Standlee V. Dalton passed away in 2004 at the age of 103. His love for Fort Hays State was immense and will live on through those who knew him and in the naming of the Standlee V. Dalton Registrar’s Suite.

The suite is the second area on campus to bear Dalton’s name. The “Pieces of the World” art sculpture outside Tomanek Hall was dedicated in honor of Dalton and James Kellerman in 1997. Dalton and Kellerman were the university’s first two registars who collectively served in that position for 57 years.

Nearly 20 members of the Dalton family were on hand for the ceremony, including Tom Dalton from the Kansas City area, a grandson of Standlee V.

Tom Dalton said that his grandfather would be “humbled and proud of this honor and excited for the future of Fort Hays State and its vision for generations to come.”

“Leading the Office of the Registrar was the role he cherished most,” Tom said, “because he loved people and loved being the first point of contact for every student who set foot on campus. If he could greet students today, Stan would tell them to embrace the future, to remain optimistic, and to never stop learning. Never be afraid to adapt and evolve.”
To learn more about the FHSU Foundation and how you can name a space on campus in honor of a loved one, call 785-628-5620, email foundation@fhsu.edu or visit https://foundation.fhsu.edu.

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