25th Anniversary Celebration

25th Anniversary Celebration

Sidney A. Ribeau President's Leadership Academy


Celebrating 25 years of credibility, integrity, service, and learning.

Bowling Green State University is proud to celebrate 25 years of the Sidney A. Ribeau President's Leadership Academy. The Sidney A. Ribeau President’s Leadership Academy (PLA) was established in 1997 by former BGSU President Sidney A. Ribeau. In the fall of 1998, the first cohort of students committed to developing their leadership skills were selected for the PLA. In the spring of 2009, the University’s Board of Trustees honored the former president’s initiative by renaming the program the Sidney A. Ribeau President’s Leadership Academy. For the past 25 years, the PLA has recruited and supported BGSU students in their leadership development. Learn more about the celebration.

PLA is a significant example of the power of philanthropy and the impact of paying it forward. Without support and spirit to give back, the PLA would not have the same transformative experiences it provides to each student. We are proud of the legacy of servant leadership you helped to create and look forward to the continued support of our student leaders.

Eyes on tomorrow, feet on today.

During the 25th celebration, Early Bird Films joined us to capture the stories and perspectives of PLA alumni. Current scholars, alumni, friends of the program, and university dignitaries gathered to commemorate this important celebration and shared the importance of the PLA from their perspectives.

Early Bird Films is owned by Matt Henkes, PLA Alumni (2013 cohort).

Read more abut the celebration in the BG Independent News and Sentinel Tribune.

The President’s Leadership Academy provides a comprehensive leadership curriculum grounded in the ideals of servant leadership. Through the development of a community of scholars, students are empowered to grow and develop as they seize opportunities and maximize their academic success while at Bowling Green State University.

President Emeritus Sidney A. Ribeau (1995-2008)

A Servant Leader, Serves First

President Emeritus Sidney A. Ribeau (1995-2008) had a vision for the University – to prepare BGSU students to lead with integrity and make meaningful contributions to society during their student years and in their professions and communities as alumni. In 1997, Dr. Ribeau's vision became a reality with the establishment of the President's Leadership Academy. Today, over 450 PLA scholars from various disciplines and geographic locations strive to uphold Dr. Ribeau's vision.

Dr. Ribeau’s dream, coupled with the immense generosity of the program’s supporters, has resulted in 25 years of integrity, service, learning and credibility. Dr. Robert M. ’55, ‘06 (Hon.) and Dr. Ellen Bowen ’54, ‘06 (Hon.) Thompson of Plymouth, Michigan, and Boca Grande, Florida, fund scholarships, known as Thompson Scholarships, for Detroit-area youth to participate in the President’s Leadership Academy as well as other scholarships. Dr. Peggie J. Hollingsworth ’71 and the late Dr. Charles B. Smith of Ann Arbor, Michigan, have provided support for the Smith & Hollingsworth PLA Scholarship Fund and numerous other BGSU initiatives and scholarships. Randy L. Gardner '81 '87, chancellor of the Ohio Department of Higher Education, has recognized leaders who have committed themselves to a lifetime of public service and teaching through an award in his honor. These exemplary servant leaders involved with the Sidney A. Ribeau President’s Leadership Academy have been instrumental in the program’s success.

Updated: 09/08/2023 09:50AM