Dr. James Hurley is the 28th president of Tusculum University.
Dr. 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.
Under Dr. Hurley’s leadership as Tusculum’s president, many exciting changes have occurred. The Board of Trustees has officially approved the move to Tusculum University in July, and the Tusculum community is bustling to get ready for University Rising! Along with the name change, the Board approved new logos at their most recent meeting and previously announced plans to implement a School for Optometry, soon to be one of only a few approved optometry schools in the nation. It was also announced in early 2018 that the Cincinnati Reds are bringing a rookie league franchise to Pioneer Park, with the first games set for this coming summer. Additionally, exciting news for our students and community, Chick-fil-A is coming to the Greeneville campus in July.
Dr. Hurley previously served as president of his alma mater, the University of Pikeville. 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.” Dr. Hurley’s vision and leadership resulted in three new colleges during his presidency including the Coleman College of Business, the Patton College of Education and the Kentucky College of Optometry. A successful fundraiser, Dr. Hurley launched an ambitious capital campaign, raising and securing more than $62 million.
Throughout his 20-year career in education, Dr. 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 and has shown an understanding of the challenges facing higher education, such as the increasingly competitive environment in which these institutions must simultaneously attract, retain and graduate students, as well as stabilize their fiscal health, grow their academic portfolio, and raise additional external funds.
Dr. 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 has also completed the Institute for Presidential Leadership at Harvard University and received a certificate in higher education management from Vanderbilt University.
He is committed to the community and region through service on nonprofit boards and community participation, which will continue throughout the Tri-Cities region. Dr. Hurley has extensive experience in globalization and diversity efforts. He has expanded international student opportunities and international campus partnerships on every campus he has served.
Joining sons Drew and Carter, Dr. Hurley and his wife, Kindall welcomed Blayklee Caroline on January 4, 2018, to the Hurley family.