Published October 23, 2018
On October 12, the UB Alumni Association recognized 12 outstanding alumni and friends for their achievements and for bringing distinction to the University at Buffalo. These alumni accomplishments significantly benefit both society and the university community, advancing the common good and inspiring others with passion and creativity.
Graduate School of Education alumnus Robert Davies (PhD ’05, Higher Education) is a 2018 recipient of this prestigious award. Davies is currently the president of Central Michigan University, a position he began in September 2018. Davies previously served as the presidents of Murray State University and Eastern Oregon University. He is known for his student-centered philosophy, commitment to the community and inclusive leadership style.
Davies comes from a family that values education. His father was an assistant professor who eventually became a dean, provost and interim president. “Growing up in that environment, we always talked about education and how education transformed lives in society,” said Davies.
Realizing that education was his passion, Davies, like his father, pursued a career in higher education. Davies’ first position was the director of annual giving and the assistant director of alumni relations at the University of Nevada, Reno. He then served as the executive director of the alumni association at Boise State in Idaho.
While working on his doctoral degree, Davies was the UB associate vice president for alumni relations and development until 2006, when he was appointed the vice president for university relations at Indiana University of Pennsylvania. Davies became the president of Eastern Oregon in 2009 and Murray State in 2014.
Davies also has a distinguished scholarly career as the author of numerous papers, as well as giving presentations throughout the country on a variety of university leadership topics. Davies has been invited to president seminars at Harvard University and received a leadership certificate from Harvard.
Throughout his career and all of his achievements, transforming student lives has remained a constant for Davies. Discussing his vision for Central Michigan University, he said, “Our role, being student centered, is to ensure that our students have the foundation for a livelihood of success that will span their entire career.”