Former UT Chancellor Dan Burck dies of lung cancer at 82

Matthew Adams

Former UT Chancellor Dan Burck died at the age of 82 on Saturday morning after undergoing complications with lung cancer.

Chancellor William McRaven released a statement Saturday about Burck’s death.

“Today the state of Texas and The University of Texas lost a champion of education and the truest of friends,” McRaven said in a statement. “Dan Burck served The University of Texas System with great distinction and oversaw a period of significant growth, both in size and reputation. Dan provided instrumental guidance for me when I first became chancellor and, I’m proud to say, also became a close friend. “

Burck was a member of Kappa Sigma fraternity at UT and graduated in 1956.

While finishing his degree, Burck worked for Getty Oil Company. Following his time at Getty, Burck went on to help create ESPN, the first cable television sports network, acting as a vice president and founding director.

Between 1984 and 1988, Burck worked as president and director for Block Watne, a Norwegian construction company.

From 1988 until his retirement in 2002, Burck worked with the UT System, where he transitioned from vice chancellor for business affairs to executive vice chancellor in 1992 and chancellor in 2000.

Since his retirement, Burck served as chairman for the largest student housing provider in the U.S., American Campus Communities.

Former Chancellor Bill Cunningham worked with Burck for eight years and remained friends with him until his death.

“Dan Burck was an amazing individual,” Cunningham said. “He understood the role that higher education and the University of Texas at Austin played in the development of young people of Texas and the state’s economic development. Very few people that I’ve known see both of those aspects of the University.”

Cunningham said while Burck was his vice chancellor for business affairs, he worked to transform education in South Texas, created the University of Texas Investment Management Company and worked with Wall Street to get university bonds upgraded to triple-A ratings. While chancellor, Burck oversaw an increase in students attending UT System campuses and an increase in research expenditures.

Funeral services are planned for 3 p.m. on Sept. 16 at the Episcopal Church of the Good Shepherd.