Posted by William Nunnelley on 2006-10-27

Samford University will inaugurate Dr. Andrew Westmoreland as its 18th president Thursday, Nov. 2, during 10 a.m. ceremonies in Wright Center Concert Hall on the campus.

An academic procession of more than 450 people will wind its way across campus for the start of program. The procession will include Samford faculty, representatives of 67 universities and learned societies and bearers of 117 flags of states and nations represented in the Samford alumni and student bodies.

The ceremony will feature remarks from Dr. Westmoreland and will include greetings from representatives of Samford constituencies and performances by the Samford Choral Union and University Brass.

Following the investiture ceremony, all guests are invited to an informal reception honoring President and Mrs. Westmoreland on the University quadrangle from 11:30 a.m. until 12:30 p.m.

Dr. Westmoreland was elected Samford president last January and succeeded retiring president Thomas E. Corts June 1. He served previously as president of Ouachita Baptist University in Arkadelphia, Ark.

Inauguration Day concludes a fortnight of inaugural activities that began with Evensong in Samford's Hodges Chapel Oct. 20. Various academic programs sponsored by Samford's eight component colleges, and service programs involving students, faculty and administration members were part of the schedule.

A Batesville, Ark., native and son of a Baptist minister, Westmoreland is a graduate of Ouachita with a master's degree from the University of Arkansas and doctorate from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock. He joined the Ouachita staff after graduation in 1979, and eventually served as vice president and executive vice president of the school before being elected president in 1998.

He and his wife, Dr. Jeanna Westmoreland, are parents of one daughter, Riley, 16. Jeanna Westmoreland was dean of the Ouachita School of Education and chair of the Arkansas State Board of Education until the move to Samford last spring.

Samford, with 4,478 students enrolled from 49 states and 27 foreign countries, has been Alabama's largest private university or college for more than 40 years.

Inauguration Details


Samford is a leading Christian university offering undergraduate programs grounded in the liberal arts with an array of nationally recognized graduate and professional schools. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th-oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. Samford enrolls 5,791 students from 49 states, Puerto Rico and 16 countries in its 10 academic schools: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy and public health. Samford fields 17 athletic teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference and ranks 6th nationally for its Graduation Success Rate among all NCAA Division I schools.