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2012 News Releases

Dr. Ken Perkins appointed provost and vice president for academic affairs

May 21, 2012

Dr. Ken Perkins Dr. Ken Perkins
Dr. Ken Perkins has been appointed provost and vice president for academic affairs at Longwood University, effective June 1, 2012.

Perkins, a member of Longwood's faculty since 1984, has served as interim vice president for academic affairs since July 2010. Before that, he served for three years as executive assistant to the president for student success, where he focused on student recruitment and retention.

"On behalf of the Board of Visitors, I would like to say that we feel privileged to have an individual in this role who understands Longwood's history and values and who has a bright vision for the university's future," said Rector Marianne Radcliff '92.

In his Longwood career, Perkins chaired the Sociology Department for five years; served as associate vice president for academic affairs for two years; and directed the university's reaffirmation of accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, which culminated successfully in 2003 after a three-year effort. He received the Maria Bristow Starke Award for Faculty Excellence in 1999 and a Fuqua Excellence in Teaching Award in 2004.

"It is an honor to serve Longwood," Perkins said during the Board of Visitors' meeting May 12 after his appointment was announced.

Referencing two current initiatives, Perkins said he wants the Longwood Salary Study by Sibson Consulting to "move forward" and the Academic Strategic Plan to "become part of the fabric of how we do business. I want my office to enhance the ability of the faculty to do what they were hired to do-and what they love to do-which is to teach, conduct research and explore their creative interests. What takes place in the classroom is sacred in the sense of engagement, enlightenment and stimulation of the curiosity of students. We must make sure we never compromise the integrity of the classroom experience-whether it's a virtual or a real classroom."

"I am a faculty member at heart. I miss the classroom every day," he said.
As a sociologist, Perkins' research has focused primarily on volunteer fire and rescue organizations in the United States and Canada. He is the co-author of two books on this subject, The Future of Volunteer Fire and Rescue Services: Taming the Dragons of Change and Leading Career and Volunteer Firefighters: Searching for Buried Treasure, and numerous scholarly articles. He has been a member of the Prospect Volunteer Fire Department since 1985.

A native of Cochran, Ga., Perkins has an associate degree from Middle Georgia College, bachelor's and master's degree from Valdosta State College, and a Ph.D. from Virginia Tech. He previously served two terms on the Prince Edward County School Board. He and his wife, Marie Hoge-Perkins, a social worker for Prince Edward County, have two children, Drew and Whitney. Perkins' hobbies include motorcycles (he owns two), and he is a "huge" fan of the fiction writer Larry McMurtry, whose books line the shelves in his office.