Dr. John R. Campbell became OSU's 15th president on August 1, 1988.
Formerly the dean of agriculture at the University of Illinois, Campbell helped further the development of distance learning at OSU, emphasized research and graduate education, and expanding OSU's role at the University Center in Tulsa.
The student honors program was revised and a scholars program for freshmen was initiated during Campbell’s tenure.
New administrative positions, including the post of provost and vice president for academic affairs, were established.
Campbell helped promote OSU’s leadership role in global higher education and sought funding for a planned $14 million food and ag products research center that later became a reality. The Noble Research Center and the Center for International Trade Development were completed while Campbell was president.
He resigned in 1993.