President honored by Board of Trustees for lasting legacy
W. Ellis Arnold III ’79 receives a framed copy of the citation naming him President Emeritus from Board of Trustees Chair Jo Ann Biggs ’80.
CONWAY, Ark. (February 14,
2023) — The Hendrix College
Board of Trustees honored current President W. Ellis Arnold III ’79 with the
title of President Emeritus, effective upon his retirement this June.
The honor was announced formally at the board’s meeting on Friday, February 10,
and President Arnold was presented with a citation from the board expressing
its appreciation for his service and numerous accomplishments.
“The Board of Trustees is deeply grateful to
Ellis for his commitment to the long-term prosperity of the College, his calm
and steady focus on the institution’s highest priorities through both
challenging and rewarding times, his thoughtful analysis of strategic planning
initiatives and decision making, and his deep love for the mission of Hendrix,
which has served the College well through his tenure and resulted in the
successful completion of historic campaign fundraising milestones, enrollment
and endowment growth, and growing recognition of Hendrix as a leading national
liberal arts college,” said Jo Ann Biggs ’80, Chair of the Board of
“I am humbled to be named President Emeritus
and grateful to the Board of Trustees for this incredible honor,” said
President Arnold. “It has been a privilege to serve my alma mater in
various leadership roles over the years, especially leading the College as
“I am grateful to my Hendrix colleagues, board
members, donors, faculty, staff, students, and fellow alumni for their
commitment to moving Hendrix forward,” said Arnold. “We could not have
accomplished the milestones in recent years without the strong sense of community that exists at Hendrix. I know that the College is
strongly positioned to overcome the challenges facing higher education and to seize
new opportunities uniquely suited to Hendrix and the academic and campus life
experience we offer.”
After earning his juris
doctorate and practicing law in Little Rock, Arnold returned to his alma mater in 1990 as Vice President for
Development and College Relations. He led Lambuth University in Jackson,
Tennessee, and Pulaski Academy in Little Rock, before returning to Hendrix as
Senior Executive Vice President, Dean of Advancement, and General Counsel.
Arnold served as Acting President on two occasions and was elected the College’s 12th
President by the Board of Trustees in December 2019.
Arnold’s retirement in June
Karen K. Petersen will become
the 13th President of Hendrix College.
About Hendrix College
A private liberal arts
college in Conway, Arkansas, Hendrix College consistently earns recognition as
one of the country’s leading liberal arts institutions, and is featured in Colleges That Change
Lives: 40 Schools That Will Change the Way You Think About Colleges. Its
academic quality and rigor, innovation, and value have established Hendrix as a
fixture in numerous college guides, lists, and rankings. Founded in 1876,
Hendrix has been affiliated with the United Methodist Church since 1884. To
learn more, visit www.hendrix.edu.