Thomas Jon Switzer was born May 16, 1939 in Marshalltown, Iowa, son of Howard R. Switzer and Gladyce Niederhauser Switzer. He died August 29, 2012. He graduated from Marshalltown High School in 1957 and received a B. A. from the University of Northern Iowa in 1961. After teaching history for five years at East High School in Waterloo, Iowa, he worked for the American Sociological Association project funded by the National Science Foundation to develop curricular materials for high schools.
Switzer received a Ph. D. in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Michigan in 1973, where he served as Teaching Fellow and later as Assistant Professor, Undergraduate and Certification Chairman, Associate Professor, and Associate Dean. From 1987-2003, he was Dean and Professor at the College of Education, University of Northern Iowa. In 2003, he became Dean of the Judith Herb College of Education in Toledo, Ohio, where he retired in 2010 as Dean Emeritus.
Some of his many accomplishments include establishment of the Renaissance Group as a force in the national initiative to reform teacher education, development of the Judith Herb College of Education at the University of Toledo as a state of the art technology-mediated facility, receipt of an IBM teacher education grant for initiatives in technology for the College of Education faculty at UT, recipient of a PT3 catalyst grant for implementation of technology into teacher education at UT, launching of the Camp Adventure program on the Toledo campus, establishment of a UNI Center for Early Developmental Education, creation of a new early childhood education school at UNI, development and implementation of a state-wide network of clinical supervisors and teacher cadres to support the UNI student teaching program, recipient of the AACTE Award for Excellence in International Education, author of numerous publications on education, grantee of major awards from Kellogg, IBM, the McElroy Foundation, USAID, the U. S. Deptartment of Defense, and the U. S. Department of Education.
He was preceded in death by his parents and one brother (Don Switzer). He is survived by his four children: Tim (Donna) Switzer, Brad (Pam) Switzer, Beth (Michael) Haworth, and Jeremy Switzer; sister Patricia (Robert) Metge of Marshalltown; eight grandchildren: John Patrick Medicus, Thomas Switzer, Ryan Switzer, Christopher Haworth, Andrew Haworth, Haley Switzer, Brad Haworth, and Colton Switzer. He is also survived by nieces Kellie Meyer, Jill Weiskerker, Doniese Switzer, Darcy Switzer, nephew Jeff Metge, grand nieces and grand nephews.
--Obituary written by Thomas Switzer's children and distributed to friends.