University System of Georgia Chancellor Erroll B. Davis Jr. announced he will retire at the end of his current contract year, June 30, 2011. Davis has served as chancellor of the system’s 35 colleges and universities since February 2006.
In his Oct. 7 announcement, Davis noted that he had made a number of commitments when the board of regents appointed him in December 2005 as the system’s 11th chancellor. He promised the board a five-year commitment, which will be fulfilled in February 2011 and he promised Gov. Sonny Perdue that he would continue as chancellor until the conclusion of Perdue’s term in January 2011.
“The advent of a new governor does mean that the university system chancellor needs to establish a long-term working relationship to be effective. It is therefore appropriate that I step down at the end of my contract year and allow my successor to establish this necessary relationship,” Davis said. “The opportunity to lead this great system of public higher education has been a tremendous experience with both challenges and rewards.
The system has certainly made great progress in its stated goal of educating more Georgians to higher levels than in the past.”
Board Chair Willis Potts said, “Chancellor Davis has been and is an impressive individual who has brought to the University System an extremely high level of experience and ethical leadership. The regents, the presidents, the state and, above all, our students, have benefited from his outstanding stewardship.”
During Davis’ tenure the system has seen a jump in enrollment from 259,945 students in fall 2006 to a preliminary 310,361 students in fall 2010, an increase of 50,416 students, or 19.4 percent. The USG’s annual economic impact on Georgia has grown from
$10.4 billion in fiscal year 2006 to $12.7 billion in fiscal year 2009 and the dollars generated from research, grants and contracts has increased $75.5 million, from $831 million in fiscal year 2006 to $906.5 million in fiscal year 2008.