Tennessee Names Interim Chancellor

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    (Photo via University of Tennessee)

    Not even 24 hours after the announcement that Beverly Davenport was being let go as the Chancellor of the University of Tennessee, the university has named an interim to replace her.

    Wayne Davis, dean of the UT Knoxville Tickle College of Engineering, will serve as the university’s interim chancellor. According to a release from Tennessee, he has agreed to serve in the role for six to twelve months and will take office on Monday.

    “The University is fortunate to be able to call on a proven and respected leader of Dean Davis’ caliber who has served the flagship campus in numerous capacities for more than four decades,” UT President Joe DiPietro stated via a release. “As its dean, he has presided over a thriving Tickle College of Engineering that has grown in enrollment and research productivity while achieving new heights of national recognition. I am grateful to both him and his wife, Sylvia, for postponing retirement to continue serving their alma mater during this critical time.”

    Davis has been at UT for the last 44 years as a member of the faculty and in administration. He was the assistant dean of the UT Knoxville Graduate School from 1985 through 1988 and was the associate dean from 1988 through 1991 for the same program. He became interim dean of the Tickle College of Engineering in 2008 before assuming the role permanently in 2009. He is also a two-time UT Knoxville graduate, with a master’s degree in Environmental Engineering and a doctorate in Civil Engineering from the Tickle College of Engineering.

    In 2003, Davis was named University Macebearer, the university’s highest faculty honor. He has been recognized for his service and accomplishments by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Department of Energy and Department of Transportation; the National Science Foundation, ORNL, and the American Society for Engineering Education.

    During his time as the engineering dean, UT’s engineering program has seen a large amount of growth and success. Enrollment has grown substantially, and fundraising has exceeded expectations.

    It was announced yesterday that Tennessee would be parting ways with Beverly Davenport as acting Chancellor after 14 months on the job. DiPietro stated in his termination letter to Davenport that there were “numerous areas of unsatisfactory performance” that led to his decision to make the decision when he did.