May 11, 2021

Former college president succumbs at 98

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The president of Carbon College from 1959-62, Claude J. Burtenshaw, 98, passed away in Logan. One of the college’s four-residential life buildings is named after the former president whose residents shortened the name to B-shaw.
The third president of the Price college was born in Shelton, Idaho. He attended Ricks College [BYU Idaho] and earned a two-year-teaching certificate. Burtenshaw’s first job was teaching in Osgood, Idaho, where he met his wife Frances, another teacher at the school.
World War II began and he spent the next three years in the Army Air Corp as a cryptographer and assistant chaplain in North Africa and Italy.
After the war, he was accepted into the University of Utah where he earned his bachelor’s, master’s and doctorate degrees in political science and philosophy.
He returned to Ricks College in 1952 as a political science professor and debate coach. Active in politics, he was involved in local and state politics, serving two sessions in the Idaho Legislature. He also ran three times for the U.S. Senate and was a strong advocate to keep Ricks College located in Rexburg, Idaho.
He left Idaho to become president of Carbon College for three years. Utah State University came knocking on Burtenshaw’s door and offered him the position of dean of students for the Logan school. While there, he served as vice president and political science professor plus directed the Peace Corps and honors program.
During the volatile ‘60s of campus revolts, he formed combined student, faculty and administration councils to find solutions to student concerns. Burtenshaw spent 53 years in education where he taught political science, philosophy, ethics, American government and the U.S. Constitution.
Civic duty was always one of Burtenshaw’s passions and he served on Logan City Council six terms. He led the proposal to form the first major/council form of government in Utah plus organized the Toastmaster Club where he served as president and area governor.
Retirement for Burtenshaw meant a mission teaching government and political science at BYU Hawaii plus directing the Elder Hostel program for the Church of Jesus Christ of latter-Day Saints.
The Burtenshaw children established an endowed scholarship in their father’s and mother’s name to assist USU Eastern students with their educational expenses. Online donations to the Claude J. and Frances D. Burtenshaw Scholarship Endowment can be made at www.usu.edu/advancement/cjburtenshaw/

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