Date of this Version
Published in Journal of the National Collegiate Honors Council, Spring/Summer 2012, Volume 13, Number 1, special issue on The Economy of Honors
Famous as the Frequent Flyer of NCHC, Herbert Lasky was an influential member of the National Collegiate Honors Council for almost twentyfive years. Having received his bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees in history from New York University, and having taught at NYU, Queen’s College, and Hunter College, in 1966 Herb started his thirty-eight-year career at Eastern Illinois University, where he chaired just about every major university committee at one time or other. He founded the honors program at EIU in 1981 and later became founding dean of the EIU Honors College. He started occupying chairs in the NCHC in 1990 when he became chair of the Finance Committee, a position he maintained until 1996 when he was elected to the sequence of NCHC offices: vice president, president-elect, president, and past president. During the 1990s, he also took charge of the printing and distribution of Forum for Honors, the precursor of JNCHC, and he served on the Publications Board and numerous conference planning committees, chairing the committee that planned the 1997 conference in Atlanta. When Herb wasn’t chairing, he was flying . . . and figuring out new and ingenious ways to get the best deals from Delta and Avis. He gave a conference session on his famous travel tips one year, and NCHC became a beneficiary of this special talent when Herb wangled free airline credits and special deals for NCHC to sponsor travel to meetings. Herb perhaps flies less but certainly hasn’t settled down since his retirement in 2004. Very active in conservation and tree culture, he and his wife buy land, clear debris, plant trees, reduce erosion, develop wildlife habitat, and work to restore the balance of nature. Herb’s chair-sitting days may be over, but we honor and appreciate his hard work for the NCHC back in the day trying to restore the (ledger) balance of honors. We gratefully and appropriately dedicate this issue of JNCHC, with its focus on “The Economy of Honors,” to Herbert Lasky.