Tusculum College will have a new president, its 28th, beginning Oct. 1.
Dr. James Hurley will succeed the retiring Dr. Nancy B. Moody in the presidency of the state’s oldest college. He was selected after a nationwide search that was initiated following Moody’s retirement announcement earlier this year.
The announcement came after a called meeting of the Tusculum College Board of Trustees on Saturday on the main campus in Greeneville.
A news release says that Hurley comes to Tusculum from Lincoln Memorial University where he served as executive vice president, dean of the School of Business and professor of leadership and education. Under his guidance, LMU enrolled its largest class, added many new academic programs and the School of Business grew by more than 60 percent, the release says.
Hurley previously served as president of his alma mater, the University of Pikeville in Kentucky. According to the release, during his tenure, UPIKE achieved its largest enrollment in history, experienced unprecedented programmatic growth and was named the 20th fastest-growing college in the U.S. by “The Chronicle of Higher Education.” Three new colleges during his presidency were launched at the Pikeville institution, including the Coleman College of Business, the Patton College of Education and the Kentucky College of Optometry.
Hurley launched a capital campaign that raised more than $62 million.
“We are excited to announce that Dr. Hurley has been named president of the college and will lead us into the next phase of Tusculum College history,” said Dr. Kenneth A. Bowman, chair of the board of trustees. “We are extremely confident in his ability and excited by his enthusiasm to become part of the Tusculum legacy.”
Throughout his 20-year career in education, Hurley has served as instructor, professor, dean, vice president and president. He has had extensive and varied experience at private, liberal arts, faith-based institutions, according to the release.
“Dr. Hurley’s outstanding track record of executive leadership and administration has led to significant enrollment growth, faculty excellence, new programs and financial stability in the institutions he has served in his career,” said Dr. Greg Nelson, chairman of the Search Committee and member of the Tusculum College Board of Trustees. “His strong demonstrated capability to connect with students, faculty, staff and the greater community was evident to our entire Tusculum community during his campus visit. Not only does James bring a high energy level, knowledge and passion for higher education in the Appalachian region, he also brings a strong network of regional and national leaders, which will greatly benefit Tusculum College.”
Hurley holds a doctoral degree from Morehead State University in education leadership and finance; a Rank 1 Certification from the University of Kentucky in educational supervision; a Master of Science in education degree from Indiana University, and a bachelor’s degree in business education and management from Pikeville College.
He also completed the Institute for Presidential Leadership at Harvard University and received a certificate in higher education management from Vanderbilt University, the release says.
“I am honored and humbled to have the opportunity to lead Tennessee’s oldest college with its rich history, heritage and commitment to higher education in Appalachia. I was drawn to Tusculum because of its intentional mission of educating first-generation college students, the deliberate focus on the Civic Arts and deeply committed trustees, faculty and staff. Tusculum is a special place with a prolific history and a bright future,” Hurley said. “My family and I are eager to join the Greeneville community and will pour our hearts and souls into strengthening Pioneer Nation.”
Hurley has served on nonprofit boards and has extensive experience in globalization and diversity efforts, according to the college’s release. He has expanded international student opportunities and international campus partnerships on every campus he has served.
“Throughout his tenure at LMU, Dr. Hurley was integral in growing the university, strengthening our high-quality curriculum and recruiting excellent faculty and staff to improve our academic community. On behalf of LMU, I wish him well and offer him any support we can give,” said LMU Chairman Autry O.V. “Pete” DeBusk.
Hurley and his wife, Kindall, are expecting a child next year. They already have two sons, Drew and Carter.
Also at the meeting on Saturday, Moody was recognized on her nearing retirement by the board of trustees with the distinction of President Emerita.
“Through her tenure, Dr. Moody has provided strong and capable leadership to the institution and her students, faculty, staff, alumni and friends as the first female president,” said Bowman. “Under her guidance, the college has served its students to a greater and unequaled sense of accomplishment than ever before, and she has embraced the opportunity to encourage faculty, staff, students and volunteers to push Tusculum College forward through creative teaching and learning, responsible stewardship and a renewed commitment to service and civic engagement.
“Dr. Moody has led Tusculum College into a new era of growth and expansion, in terms of bricks and mortar, academic programs and opportunities, and fiscal responsibility,” a news release from the college says. “During Dr. Moody’s tenure the college has completed the most successful fundraising campaign in its history, raising more than $26 million, has constructed two new apartment-style residence halls, a 100,000 square foot, state-of-the art science building, and has increased the endowment by more than $6 million.
“The Ronald H. and Verna June Meen Center for Science and Math will impact math, science, computer science, biology, chemistry, environmental science and nursing students for generations to come. Dr. Moody’s warm relationship with Verna June Meen has led to the naming of the building, the development of an endowed scholarship and an endowed professorship.”