John Davis

Dr. John Davis, director of governmental relations and assistant professor of political science at the University of Arkansas at Monticello, is one of eight Arkansans named to the Delta Regional Authority’s Delta Leadership Institute Executive Academy, according to Chris Masingill, DRA co-chairman.

The DRA receives about $31 million annually from the federal government to invest in projects to help spur economic development in an area that covers eight states along the Mississippi River from Louisiana to Illinois. Roughly half of Arkansas is located in the DRA coverage area.

“This is a wonderful honor for Dr. Davis,” said UAM Chancellor Karla Hughes. “John is a dynamic leader who is held in high regard by his colleagues in academia and who is building a reputation as an invaluable asset to the state and region.”

As a member of the Leadership Academy, Davis will spend the next year learning about the Delta region from an economic standpoint and will also learn what resources are available to the region. He and other members of the Academy will travel to Washington, D.C., and other locations across the DRA coverage area to attend classes in economic development, leadership, workforce training, education and entrepreneurship.

A native of Hot Springs and a graduate of Lakeside High School, Davis joined the UAM faculty in 2015. He holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Arkansas-Fayetteville and a Ph.D., from the University of Missouri.

In addition to teaching classes, Davis works with the Arkansas General Assembly and local and county officials as an advocate on behalf of UAM, tracking legislation as it’s being formed to explore its impact on higher education.