Guide to the Dale P. Parnell Papers

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Overview of the Collection

Creator: Parnell, Dale, 1928-
Title: Dale P. Parnell Papers
Dates: 1965-1998 ( inclusive )
1979-1995 ( bulk )
Quantity: 8.1 cubic feet, including 40 videotapes and 5 photographs (9 boxes)
Collection Number: MSS Parnell
Summary: The Dale P. Parnell Papers document Parnell's career through personal correspondence, articles, publications, speeches, books, photographs, and videotapes.
Repository: Oregon State University Libraries, Special Collections & Archives Research Center
Contact Information: Special Collections & Archives Research Center
121 The Valley Library
Oregon State University
Corvallis OR
Telephone: 541-737-2075
Fax: 541-737-8674
Languages: Materials in English . 

Biographical Note

Dale Paul Parnell was educated at Willamette University (B.A., 1951) and at the University of Oregon (M.Ed., 1956, D.Ed., 1964). He served as principal of Springfield High School, superintendent of Lane Intermediate Education District, and was instrumental in founding Lane Community College, serving as the College's first president from 1965 to 1968. When he left in 1968, Governor Tom McCall appointed Parnell to the position of Oregon Superintendent of Public Instruction. In 1974, he became the chancellor for San Diego Community College; two years later, in 1976, he became president of San Joaquin Delta Community College. He was president of the American Association of Community Colleges from 1981to 1991, followed by a year as Oregon's community college commissioner.

He served on the faculty for Oregon State University's School of Education from 1992 through 1996, where he helped establish the Western Center for Community College Development. The Center was established at Oregon State University in 1991 to provide professional development, opportunities for partnerships, and assistance with curriculum to community colleges in the western United States.

Retiring from OSU in 1996, Parnell was named Professor Emeritus of Education. After retiring, he was a visiting professor at the University of South Florida in Tampa. Parnell was a prolific writer; his many publications include the book The Neglected Majority, which was published in 1985.

Content Description

This collection documents Parnell's career through his personal correspondence, articles, publications, speeches, books, photographs, and videotapes.

It contains Parnell's speeches and articles (1969-1996); statements issued by Parnell as president of San Joaquin Delta College (CA) (1977-79); books written and edited by Parnell; The Community and Junior College Journal, which was published by Parnell (1980-1992); the American Association of Community and Junior Colleges (AACJC) publications and project records; AACJC Letter, which was edited by Parnell (1981-1991); clippings and other news items pertaining to Parnell's accomplishments and activities (1965-1981); correspondence pertaining to his changes in jobs (1974-1992); Contextual Learning Institute and Consortium Research Project final report (1997); and 40 videotapes of speeches by Parnell, the Tech Prep Associate Degree Program series, and other activities.

Use of the Collection

Restrictions on Access :  

Collection is open for research.

Preferred Citation :  

Dale P. Parnell Papers, Oregon State University Archives, Corvallis, Oregon.

Administrative Information

Additional Reference Guides :  

Preliminary container list available online.

Processing Note :  

This collection is not fully processed; this guide is preliminary.

Acquisition Information :  

These materials were donated by Dale Parnell and by the Lane Community College Archives in 1997.

Related Materials :  

There are materials related to Parnell in The Western Center for Community College Development Records (RG 235). Brochures and news clippings about the Center are available in the Memorabilia Collection (MC-Western Center for Community College Development). Materials pertaining to community colleges in the 1960s thru 1980s are available in the School of Education Records (RG 184). The Archives' collections also include the papers of OSU School of Education faculty member E. Wayne Courtney.

The Lane Community College Archives houses the President's Office (Dale Parnell) Records, 1964-1969 (A-033) . Additional information about Parnell can be found in the Assistant to the President (Bert Dotson) Records (A-032 ), the online exhibit Lane Community College: The Parnell Years , and a 2003 oral history with Dale Parnell.


  • Corporate Names :
  • Oregon State University. School of Education.
  • Subject Terms :
  • Community colleges--Oregon.
  • Community colleges--Oregon--Administration.
  • Education--Study and teaching (Higher)--Oregon.
  • Universities and colleges--Oregon.
  • Vocational education.
  • Form or Genre Terms :
  • Photographic prints.
  • Videotapes.
    • Other Creators :
    • Lane Community College (Eugene, Or.)

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