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Bob HellerRobert Heller
BS ’68, industrial engineering
2018 Service Award
The Service Award recognizes exceptional service and leadership in the area of volunteer fundraising.

Robert Heller is president of Heller Capital, Inc., a consultant to growing businesses.

A graduate of NDSU’s College of Engineering and Purdue University’s Krannert School of Business, Heller enjoys a successful career in manufacturing and manufacture consulting. In top management roles at several companies, Heller has specialized in improving manufacturing processes, expanding market share and increasing annual sales.

Heller spent nearly 20 years at Advance Circuits, Inc., a manufacturer of circuit boards and other electronic components. The Minnesota company’s sales totaled $3 million when Heller was hired as vice president of manufacturing in 1978. He steadily rose through the ranks and was promoted to CEO in 1991. During his tenure, Advance Circuits increased its annual sales to $150 million.

Heller led other manufacturing companies, including Cirus Controls and PPT Vision to similar growth trajectories. In some companies, Heller accepted a minority ownership position and went to work to increase their profitability and value.

In 1991, Bob was awarded the NDSU Alumni Achievement Award, which was followed by NDSU’s Industrial Engineering Outstanding Alumni Award in 2011.

As Heller’s career moved forward, NDSU remained an important part of his life. His energy, generosity and counsel have made a lasting difference in the lives of NDSU students.

Heller is a member of the Old Main Society and the main contributor to the Gordon Heller Scholarship Fund for NDSU students. He also supports the university through the Heller Family Charitable Fund. He has served on the NDSU Foundation and Alumni Association’s investment committee for more than 20 years and became a life trustee last year. Heller is always willing to assist with fundraising activities in support of students and the university’s advancement, not to mention making his own meaningful contributions.

Heller also makes time to support the Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering Department where he has donated state-of-the-art lab equipment and continues to serve on the alumni advisory board.

He earned a bachelor’s degree in Industrial Engineering at NDSU and a master’s degree in industrial administration at Purdue University. While attending NDSU, Heller was a member of the wrestling team, the Alpha Tau Omega Fraternity and the Alpha Pi Mu Industrial Engineering Honor Fraternity.

Heller and his wife, Diane, also support Hope Academy, an educational program for underprivileged children. The Hellers have four children - Michelle, Stacy, Peter and Melissa - and five grandchildren who they visit as often as they can.

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The NDSU Foundation is a nonprofit, tax-exempt charitable organization under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. Donations are tax-deductible as allowed by law.
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