Emeritus status conferred on five long-serving Penn State trustees

September 17, 2021

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Five former Penn State Board of Trustees members have been conferred the rank of trustee emeritus in recognition of their years of meritorious service to the board and the University.

At the Board of Trustees meeting on Friday, Sept. 17, the board conferred emeritus status on former trustees Donald Cotner, David Han, George Henning Jr., Ira Lubert and Robert Tribeck.

Emeritus status is an honorary designation granted to past board chairs, as well as to other board members who have served for six or more years with distinction and have been recommended by the board’s Committee on Governance and Long-Range Planning. Trustees emeriti draw on their previous board service to provide counsel as needed, and they are invited to attend University events, activities and public meetings of the board. The board chair also can appoint a trustee emeritus to serve as a nonvoting member of certain standing committees. 

Donald Cotner, a 1971 College of Education alumnus, was first elected to the board by delegates from agricultural societies in July 2012 and re-elected in 2015 and 2018. He is an officer of Cotner Farms Inc., a Dansville, Pennsylvania, company that distributes eggs throughout the northeastern United States. He is also a partner in Don Cotner Farms and Boyd Station LLC. Cotner serves on the Danville Area Community Foundation Board and continues to serve Penn State as a member of the Mount Nittany Society.

David Han is a physician and professor of surgery, radiology and engineering design at the Colleges of Medicine and Engineering and Penn State Health Milton S. Hersey Medical Center. A member of the Penn State Faculty Senate, Han was first elected to the board in 2015 as an academic trustee, a position to which he was re-elected in 2018. He also served as Penn State Alumni Association president from 2007 to 2009 and was recognized as a Penn State Alumni Fellow in 2011.

George Henning Jr. is a business consultant and the retired chief financial officer of LTV Corporation. He also served as chief executive officer, president and chief financial officer of Aventine Renewable Energy Holdings Inc. Henning is a 1963 College of the Liberal Arts graduate and holds a master’s degree in business administration from Harvard University. He was first elected to the board by alumni in 2004 and served two, three-year terms. He also serves as a member of the Lion’s Paw Alumni Association, the Centre County chapter of the Penn State Alumni Association, and on the boards of multiple local charitable organizations. 

Ira Lubert is a former chair of the Board of Trustees who graduated from the University in 1973 with a degree in food service and housing administration. Lubert is chairman and co-founder of Independence Capital Partners and Lubert Adler Partners LP. First elected to the board in 1997, he also served as a trustee from 2007 to 2013 and was re-appointed to the board effective January 2015 to fill an unexpired term. He was elected vice chair in 2015, and chair in 2016. He previously served on the Penn State Abington Advisory Board and the steering committee for the seven-year Grand Destiny fundraising campaign.

Robert Tribeck is a 1991 Penn State graduate with a bachelor’s degree in economics. He also holds a doctoral degree in law from Ohio Northern University Pettit College of Law. Tribeck was first elected to the board by alumni in 2015, and re-elected for a second term in 2018. Tribeck is the chief legal officer at Acute Post Medical LLC, a Pennsylvania-based health care system, and serves as counsel to the Harrisburg law firm Barley Snyder. He also previously completed a federal judicial clerkship with U.S. District Judge William Caldwell.

Last Updated September 17, 2021