Posted by William Nunnelley on 2007-08-16

Biology professor Larry J. Davenport has been named director of the Vulcan Materials Center for Environmental Stewardship and Education at Samford University. Dr. Davenport, an expert in field botany with an emphasis on aquatic and wetland plants, has taught at Samford since 1985 and is the senior member of his department.

Davenport will continue to teach basic botany and ecology courses as well as specialized courses in plant taxonomy and local flora in the undergraduate program, and wetlands in the master of science in environmental management program.

He is an acknowledged expert on the Cahaba lily, a rare plant found only in 31 counties across central Alabama, Georgia and South Carolina. His work to protect the lily and its habitat helped in the establishment of Alabama's Cahaba River National Wildlife Refuge in 2002.

Davenport holds a bachelor's degree from Miami (Ohio) University and master of science and doctor of philosophy degrees from the University of Alabama.

The Vulcan Materials Center is a partnership between Vulcan Materials Company and Samford. It promotes environmental science education and research. Established in 2001, the partnership encompasses three areas-education, environmental stewardship and innovative solutions in environmental management.

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.