Born on January 26, 1932, Joanne Lantz received degrees from University of Indianapolis (B.S.), Indiana University–Bloomington (M.S.), and Michigan State University (Ph.D.). She came to Indiana University–Purdue University Fort Wayne (IPFW) in 1965 as part of the psychology faculty. After a successful career as both a professor and an administrator, she was IPFW’s chancellor from 1988–94. She retired as both professor emerita of psychological sciences and chancellor emerita of IPFW in 1994.
As chancellor, Lantz oversaw one of IPFW’s largest building programs. During her tenure, the Visual Arts Building (1991), the Williams Theatre (1992), the Engineering and Technology Building (1992), and the first parking garage (1991) were constructed.
As well as being an advocate for IPFW, Lantz was involved in many community groups. Often, like in her professional career, she was breaking barriers and creating connections. Lantz, for example, was one of the first female members of Fort Wayne’s Quest Club, a professional and business club established in 1911 by a collective of prominent local businessmen, as celebrated in the celebratory presentation found at this link.
In an interview available through IU’s Oral History Archive, Lantz discusses regional campuses, with a special emphasis on the development and details of IPFW. In addition, she speaks of the influences and effects of the Vietnam War and financial problems on Indiana University campuses.
Lantz was also an avid supporter of IPFW Athletics. She attended many events, and, in 2007, she was recognized as part of IPFW’s Athletics Hall of Fame. Arnie Ball, former IPFW volleyball coach proclaimed, “Joanne Lantz was IPFW’s number one cheerleader.” Lantz was also proud to represent IPFW at the NCAA men’s volleyball championships in Honolulu, Hawaii.