The Rodel Foundation
Don Budinger is one of the founders and the former President of Rodel, Inc. – a garage start up that grew to become the world’s largest manufacturer of the surface finishing chemicals used to make computer chips, rigid memory disks and specialty optics.
When Rodel was sold in 1999, a significant portion of the proceeds was contributed to create The Rodel Foundations. The purpose of the Rodel Foundations is to improve the pre-kindergarten through 12th grade public education systems in Delaware and Arizona so that they will be widely recognized as two of the best in the nation.
Currently Don is chairman and founding director of The Rodel Foundations, chairman and founding director of Science Foundation Arizona, and chairman and founding director Emeritus of College Success Arizona( formerly Arizona College Scholarship Foundation). He is a board member of Morrison Institute, Basis Charter Schools, Greater Phoenix Leadership and the Grand Canyon Board of Trustees. In addition, Don serves on the Southern Arizona Leadership Council, the O’Connor House Advisory Group, ASU President’s Club Trustees, Phoenix Biomedical Campus Advisory Council and No Labels in Washington DC.
Don has been the recipient of several awards including being named one of the Morrison Institute for Public Policy’s Distinguished Associates, the 2010 O’Connor House Community Leadership Award; an Honorary Doctorate degree in Humane Letters from Northern Arizona University; the “Science of Early Learning Award” from New Directions Institute; the “Horace Steele Child Advocacy Award” from Children’s Action Alliance, the “Outstanding Achievement in Higher Education” award from the Arizona Board of Regents; the “Homeroom Heroes” award from Teach for America and the “Distinguished Service” award from the University of Arizona College of Engineering.
Mr. Budinger graduated from the University of Arizona with a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1964.