UCA Names Houston Davis as New President

by Morgan Embry, Taylor Fulgham & John Anderson
Associate Editor, Staff Writers

In a UCA Board of Trustees meeting on Nov. 2, the board voted unanimously to name Houston D. Davis as the university’s 11th president.

Davis will be stepping in to take over for President Tom Courtway at the beginning of spring 2017, after moving into the president’s house.

Davis said his goal is to make sure students are successful and thriving in their field. He also said he has a passion for bringing internships and study abroad opportunities to the university.

“I really love … the idea of taking every student and providing them with the support they need to be successful,” Davis said. “And that can be in class, it can be out of class. And a lot of that is taking the students and where is their passion around things like internships? Where is their passion in doing community service?”

According to a previous article from The Echo, Davis has been the interim president of Kennesaw State University in Georgia since June 2016 after the university’s former president retired. Before Davis was KSU’s interim president, he was the executive vice chancellor and chief academic officer of the university system of Georgia for four years.

“Out of all four applicants he was a good choice,” trustee Kay Hinkle said. “He was all of our choice. We look forward to working with him.”

The board of trustees met earlier that day at 10 a.m. in a closed meeting, then called an open meeting at 7 p.m. to vote Davis into office.

The board decided on Davis after talking to all four candidates during their visits to campus last week, Hinkle said.

According to UCA’s 2016 fiscal budget, which spans from July 2016 to July 2017, the president is allocated a salary of $242,400. However, Davis’ salary has not been confirmed.

Davis has a Ph.D. in education and human development from Vanderbilt University, along with a master’s degree from Tennessee State University and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Memphis.

Davis said he is naturally attracted to all that the university has to offer. He said he is excited about the work he has planned for the university and is excited to move his family to Arkansas.

photos by Lauren Swaim

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