Harry M. Drake '50

2005 Distinguished Citizen Award

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Harry M. Drake has long supported Macalester College, the Twin Cities and the greater community in ways both roundly celebrated and quietly noted. A longtime Macalester benefactor, he made a gift of lasting significance in 1998 in establishing the Harry M. Drake Distinguished Professorship in the Humanities and Fine Arts. Professor and Music Department Chair Marjorie Merryman is the first to hold the chair.

An art major at Macalester, Drake also studied at Art Center School in Los Angeles and worked with designer Frank Gianninoto & Associates in New York. Drake has supported the college in many ways, including a decade as the college archivist. A dedicated curator of the college’s legacy, he inventoried artifacts from Macalester history, researched and identified faces in old photos, and made numerous calls to obtain copies of missing materials. He is also serving as archivist and arts benefactor at another alma mater, St. Paul Academy. Drake has actively volunteered with many beloved community organizations, serving on the boards of the Courage Center Foundation, Minnesota Foundation for Better Hearing and Speech, Minneapolis Institute of Arts, Minneapolis College of Art & Design and the St. Paul Philharmonic (now the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra). Knowing personally the challenges of living with a hearing loss, Drake has made free or low-cost hearing aids available to qualified people through a program at Courage Center.

"Harry Drake always has remembered his Macalester roots and been a tremendously loyal supporter of the college in so many ways," wrote Macalester Ttrustee David Ranheim ’64. "It is most fitting that he be recognized in this way for his distinguished service to Macalester and the community."