PIKEVILLE, Ky. — Dr. James Hurley resigned this morning from the University of Pikeville, where he had served as president since 2013.
In an email to the UPIKE community, pasted below, Hurley emphasized the university’s strong footing and significant recent accomplishments. He announced that Governor Paul Patton will be returning to the role of president on an interim basis while the UPIKE Board of Trustees conducts a national search for its next leader.
Dear UPIKE Family:
I want to start by personally thanking each and every person that makes up the wonderful UPIKE family. For the past six years, it has been my honor to work with an outstanding and supportive Board of Trustees, a world-class faculty, a high performing staff and the best student body a president could ask for. Thank you for allowing me to serve this great university!
It is after much thought and prayer that I submit my notice of resignation as President at the University of Pikeville. There comes a time in every leader’s journey that he must prioritize what matters most. For me that is to put my family first and to make a professional decision that is best for my family. God has provided several options for me to consider and I will be making a decision in the coming weeks. I truly want to follow His will for our lives.
Tina, Drew, Carter and I have loved serving as the first family of UPIKE. This institution is very special to us and we will always cheer for the Orange and Black. Once a bear – always a bear!
I have agreed to remain as a transitional consultant until the end of the year. Governor Patton will transition back into an interim role. The board of trustees will start an immediate national search for the next president. I will assist in any manner possible to make sure that UPIKE remains strong and vibrant.
I am very proud of our accomplishments, such as nationally ranked record enrollments; record fundraising gifts and campaign goals; founding of the Coleman College of Business, Kentucky College of Optometry and Patton College of Education. We have captured two national championships in athletics and produced a record number of All-American Scholar Athletes. We now have a global presence in China and an all-time high for campus diversity. Everyone should be very proud of our growth.
I want to especially thank Governor Patton and Chairman Dotson for their friendship and for giving me the opportunity to serve as the first alumni president of this great institution. They both are servant leaders that are dedicated to the health and success of UPIKE in immeasurable ways.
I can leave the presidency knowing in my heart that it is better shape than ever before. The best days for UPIKE are still ahead. There is no better time to be a Bear!
Please keep my family in your thoughts and prayers as we transition to the next chapter of our lives. To our students always remember faith, family and friends in that order, and everything else in this world will work to your favor.
God bless each of you and GO BEARS!
Dr. James Hurley
We wish Dr. Hurley and his family the best during this time of transition.