Gale Sullenberger grew up in Norman, Oklahoma and became interested in computing when, during his junior year of college, he enrolled in a computer programming course taught by the director of the University of Oklahoma Computer Center. Following completion of this course, he was employed by the OU Computer Center as a programmer and taught labs for programming courses. This experience led to a life-long interest in teaching and computer applications in business and industry.
Dean Sullenberger received a doctorate in industrial engineering from the University of Oklahoma in 1971. He also received a Bachelor of Science degree in engineering physics and a master’s degree in engineering from OU in 1963 and 1965, respectively. He was a Distinguished Military Graduate and served in the U.S. Army as a Captain following college.
Dean Sullenberger joined the faculty of the University of Arkansas in 1971. He held numerous positions at the University of Arkansas from 1971-1986, including acting vice-chancellor for finance and administration, associate vice-chancellor for academic affairs, associate dean of the College of Business Administration, and chair of the computer information systems program, which he founded. For four years, the UA Computer Center reported to Sullenberger, and during this time, he was responsible for the construction of a new university computing center, installation of the first remote computer labs in the five undergraduate colleges, and the implementation of new online enrollment, human resource and accounting systems.
Dean Sullenberger left the UA to accept the deanship of the Foster College of Business Administration at Bradley University in Peoria, Illinois, where he served as dean from 1986 to 1995. In 1995, Sullenberger was named dean of the College of Business and Economics at Washington State University in Pullman, Washington, where he served as dean until 1999.
Dean Sullenberger moved back to his home state of Oklahoma in 1999, when he accepted the position of dean of the Collins College of Business at the University of Tulsa. In addition to the deanship, Sullenberger holds the rank of professor of management information systems and operations management.
Dean Sullenberger’s business experience includes working for a startup computer services company in Oklahoma City, consulting engagements with a number companies and teaching professional development programs in computing for industry employees.
Dean Sullenberger was inducted into the Arkansas Academy of Computing in 2006 in recognition of his pioneer work in computing in the State of Arkansas.