S. Sidney Ulmer, a 1952 Furman graduate earned his Doctor of Philosophy from Duke University in 1956. He has taught and lectured at prestigious universities around the country including Michigan State University and the University of Kentucky, from which he retired as an Alumni Professor. He served as Chair of the Political Science Department at Michigan State in 1961-1962 and held the same position at Kentucky from 1963 to 1969.
During his long and distinguished career, Dr. Ulmer published numerous books and articles on law, courts, the judicial process, and social science methodology. He was a pioneer in the field of judicial behavior developing the best of normative and empirical research. His work has consistently been published in the very best journals in the field.
Dr. Ulmer has generously sponsored the Ulmer Medal since 1977. This award has been given to senior political science majors who have distinguished themselves in their study of politics at Furman and who intend to continue their studies in graduate school.
He has also been the recipient of numerous awards and marks of distinction – including selection as The Distinguished Professor in the College of Arts and Sciences, University of Kentucky; an honorary LL.D. from Furman University; and two Pi Sigma Alpha Awards for Outstanding Teaching in Political Science. In 2004, the University of Kentucky’s Department of Political Science honored Dr. Ulmer by establishing the S. Sidney Ulmer Project for Research in Law and Judicial Politics – a web-based depository of assorted judicial papers and court related databases. Dr. Ulmer married Margaret A. Lipscomb of Greenville in 1946. They have five children.