Millikin University - Decatur, IL
Dr. Harold G. Jeffcoat named to serve as Millikin University’s 14th president
Millikin University > Presidential Announcement
November 16, 2010

DECATUR, Ill. – The Millikin University board of trustees today announced the selection of Dr. Harold G. Jeffcoat as Millikin’s 14th president.

Jeffcoat brings more than 30 years of experience in higher education to Millikin, most recently serving as president and CEO for 10 years at Texas Wesleyan University in Fort Worth.

“After months of outstanding work by the presidential search committee, input from the campus community, and careful consideration by the board of trustees, we are pleased to announce Dr. Jeffcoat as Millikin’s next president,” remarked Mikel Briggs, chairman of the Millikin board of trustees. “Dr. Jeffcoat’s extraordinary experience and career accomplishments, combined with the dedication and talents of the campus community will help position Millikin to grow and improve, while serving our mission of delivering on the promise of education. We are excited to watch the next chapter of the Millikin story unfold.”

"Marie and I are excited to join the Millikin University family and the Decatur community,” remarked Jeffcoat. “The University's reputation for preparing students for meaningful and productive lives, the excellent faculty and loyal alumni, and the strong support of the Decatur community all make Millikin an exceptional place to live and learn."

Jeffcoat’s selection concludes a search process that began nearly a year ago. Millikin’s board of trustees launched a nationwide search shortly following outgoing president Douglas E. Zemke’s October 2009 retirement announcement to ensure the orderly, unrushed transition of leadership for the University. Jeffcoat was chosen from a pool of more than 80 applicants. 

“As members of the board of trustees, we have no greater responsibility than protecting the health and vitality of the institution in which we serve,” remarked Briggs. “Selection of a president is one of the most important decisions we make as trustees, and we feel Dr. Jeffcoat’s significant experience in higher education provides the talent and expertise required of this position.”

A native of Nashville, Tennessee, Jeffcoat began his career in higher education in 1975 at Baker University, a United Methodist college located in Baldwin City, Kansas. He earned a B.A. and M.A. in history from the University of South Florida, a doctorate in educational policy studies from the University of Kentucky, and a graduate law degree from the University of Leicester in England.  He previously served as assistant vice president at Purdue University and vice chancellor at the University of Missouri. This past June, he completed his tenth year as president and CEO of Texas Wesleyan University. In addition, he holds the rank of tenured full professor of humanities and professor of European Union law at Texas Wesleyan University.

He and his wife, Marie, have three children (Jennifer, Jacqueline and James) and two grandchildren (Julianna Marie and Ava Grace).

Jeffcoat will assume the presidency on April 1, 2011. A press conference and introduction to the community will be scheduled for that time. A complete biography, photo, and curriculum vitae for Jeffcoat can be found at

Peg Luy, vice president for university development, will serve as interim president and CEO from January 1 through March 31, 2011. Luy, a 1975 graduate of Millikin, is a longtime employee of the institution with nearly 30 years experience in higher education. 

Millikin University is a private comprehensive university with a diverse student population of approximately 2,300 students set in an experiential learning environment that promotes hands-on opportunities in over 50 majors from the College of Fine Arts, College of Arts and Sciences, College of Professional Studies and Tabor School of Business. Millikin is a 75-acre residential campus, which affords its students the opportunity to live out their learning through performance, generating the confidence to succeed before and after graduation. More information is available at

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Amy Hodges
Media Relations Coordinator
Millikin University
1184 W. Main. St.
Decatur, IL 62522
T: 217.420.6636
F: 217.424.3953
Millikin University - Decatur, IL
Millikin University - Decatur, IL