Richard & Trish Davidson

Richard & Trish Davidson

donor plaque
Richard & Trish  Davidson

Born and raised in Allen, Kan., Richard K. Davidson entered Washburn on a basketball scholarship. He earned a bachelor's degree in history in 1966 and an honorary doctorate in 1994. He also earned a graduate degree in the Program for Management Development from Harvard University in 1973. Davidson began his distinguished railroad career in 1960 as a brakeman/conductor with Missouri Pacific. He joined Union Pacific Railroad in 1982 when it merged with Missouri Pacific and Western Pacific Railroads. He held various operating department positions until his appointment to chairman and chief executive of the railroad in 1991. He was named chairman and CEO of the corporation in 1997. Davidson stepped down as chief executive officer on January 1, 2006, and retired as chairman on January 31, 2007.  Mr. Davidson was a Trustee of the Washburn University Foundation from 1996 to 2004. He served on the finance, development, and executive committees. He has been a Trustee Emeriti since 2004. He is married to Trish Davidson. A native of Freeport, Ill., Trish is a 1972 graduate of the University of Iowa. After a 20-year career with Union Pacific Railroad, Trish retired in 1996 as assistant vice president of community relations and corporate giving. Trish served on the boards of the Durham Western Heritage Museum, the University of Nebraska at Omaha Women's Athletic Steering Council and the Nebraska Humanities Foundation. The Davidsons have three married children and seven grandchildren. They are currently enjoying retirement and traveling extensively.