2014 Senator Orrin Hatch Award for Advancing Healthy Aging

Congratulations to our 2014 Senator Orrin Hatch Award for Advancing Healthy Aging Winner, Mitchell E. Daniels, Jr.


Mitchell E. Daniels, Jr. is the 12th president of Purdue University, a post he assumed in January 2013, at the conclusion of his term as Governor of Indiana.

Daniels was elected Indiana’s 49th governor in 2004, in his first bid for any elected office. He was re-elected in 2008, receiving more votes than any candidate for any public office in the state's history. As governor, Daniels spearheaded a host of reforms aimed at strengthening the Indiana economy, and improving the ethical standards, fiscal condition and performance of state government.

As governor, Daniels’ conservation efforts set aside record acreages of protected wetlands and wildlife habitats and added more than 3,000 miles of hiking and biking trails. His efforts earned him the nickname “The Teddy Roosevelt of Indiana” by the Nature Conservancy.

Daniels came from a successful career in business and government, holding numerous top management positions in both the private and public sectors. He served as CEO of the Hudson Institute and President of Eli Lilly and Company's North American Pharmaceutical Operations. He also served as a senior advisor to President Ronald Reagan and as Director of the Office of Management and Budget under George W. Bush.

At Purdue, President Daniels has made student affordability and student success top priorities, and has pledged to keep a Purdue education within reach for students and families. Purdue tuition was held constant this school year and Daniels intends to ask the university’s Board of Trustees to freeze tuition through at least the 2015-16 academic year.

Other top priorities include accelerating growth in three areas that are key to the national economy and support Purdue’s strengths (engineering, technology and computer science); infusing resources in selected areas of research; and facilitating commercialization of research.

Daniels earned a bachelor's degree from the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton in 1971 and his law degree from Georgetown in 1979. He is the author of three books.

Daniels and his wife Cheri have four daughters.