Chester A. Berry set a standard marked by his intellectual approach
to the field. This award honors a man whose writings seem to travel
through time; pieces written by Berry are as relevant today as they were
decades years ago. In the 1971 annual conference keynote, “The Union
and the Two Cultures,” Berry wrote, “A union, at least a good one, is
interdisciplinary. Its program should involve whatever is important or
interesting. Its very operation demands the balancing of both the fiscal
and the intellectual budgets. It brings together components that the
community needs to synthesize an approach to living.”
As the director of Rhode Island and Stanford Unions, Berry was a
visible leader in the profession—advancing education through conference
programs, proceedings, and The Bulletin; authoring Planning A College Union Building and editing College Unions—Year Fifty;
and leading the association’s research committee for many years.
Serving as the association's president in 1960, his presidential address
spoke on setting standards for college unions and union professionals,
and almost 20 years later, Berry led ACUI, along with eight other
associations, in forming the Council for the Advancement of Standards in
Higher Education (CAS).
Berry also served as the first full-time employee of ACUI, working as executive secretary from 1968–81.