PIKEVILLE – The University of Pikeville Board of Trustees has named James L. Hurley president-elect of the institution, effective July 1, 2013. Hurley, a native of Perry County and a graduate of Buckhorn High School, currently serves as the vice president for enrollment and retention and special assistant to the president.
The action was taken during the board’s spring meeting May 18. University President Paul Patton informed the board that he would not ask for an extension of his contract, which expires June 30, 2013.
“The Patton-Hurley team has brought us tremendous progress,” said Board Chairman Terry Dotson. “The Hurley-Patton team will continue that progress.”
An experienced educator and administrator, Hurley spent 11 years in the public education system, serving in numerous roles, including as principal, assistant principal, dean of students, teacher and athletic coach. He joined Patton at the University in 2009, providing leadership in the administration of campus operations, program development, strategic initiatives, recruiting, financial aid and retention efforts. Along with his wife, Tina, he is a graduate of the University of Pikeville, formerly Pikeville College. He earned his master’s degree from Indiana University, a Rank I from the University of Kentucky and his superintendent’s certification at Morehead State University. He will complete his doctorate at Morehead in the fall.
“James Hurley is bright, energetic, motivated and a self-starter. He has been an integral part of the tremendous progress we have made at the University these past three years,” said Patton. “As our chief executive officer, he will lead this University to new heights.”
The board also voted to establish the position of chancellor, which Patton will assume on July 1, 2013. As chancellor, Patton, who was governor of Kentucky from 1995-2003, will represent the University and concentrate on fundraising.
“I am humbled and honored by the board of trustees’ decision in naming me president-elect to succeed Governor Patton next year,” said Hurley. “My wife and I love this institution and we look forward to our continued journey with the administration, faculty, staff and students at UPike. Governor Patton’s willingness to accept the role of University Chancellor will make for a seamless and smooth transition.”
The announcement also has historical significance, as Hurley will become the first alumnus to lead the institution, which was established in 1889 to serve the youth of Appalachia.
“A great university can measure its worth by the quality of its alumni,” said Kay Hammond, president of the Alumni Association. “Vice President Hurley is certainly one of our most accomplished. He has always sought to protect and preserve all that is special about the University of Pikeville.”