Posted by Jack Brymer on 2010-11-05

Keith Herron of Nashville, Tenn., a 1986 graduate, was elected President of the Samford University Alumni Association at the start of annual Homecoming Weekend Nov. 5.  Herron, president of the Midsouth Region of Regions Bank, succeeds Greg Powell of Birmingham.

Speaking at the annual Alumni Association meeting, Herron said he felt “a tremendous responsibility and obligation” to give back to the school which had given him so much. “Samford is a university that has tremendous momentum and it’s because of you,” he told the Alumni Association members. “Thank you for what you have done in the past and what you will do for Samford in the future.”

One of Herron’s immediate goals for the association is to increase the number of alumni giving. The percentage in the year just completed, June 31, was 10.36 percent. The goal for 2011 is 13.3 percent, an increase of two percent. The national average for private institutions is 16 percent.

“There is no reason why we can’t double alumni participation in the next couple of years,” he said.

“Keith was chosen as president of the Alumni Association for several reasons,” said David Goodwin, Samford’s Director of Alumni and Parents Programs. “He has a long history of dedication to supporting Samford, lives in one of Samford’s major markets (Nashville), and he brings a serious, executive leadership style that works well for this post.”

Goodwin shared that the alumni department had identified 900 potential volunteers to be enlisted to increase alumni participation and to make Samford “as strong as possible.”

Randy Pittman, Vice President for University Advancement, reported that enrollment was at a record of 4,715 students and that the GPA of entering freshmen had increased as well. “The trajectory of Samford is infectious,” he told the group. He praised students, faculty, staff and administration for having and reflecting a “servant’s heart.”

Herron earned the Bachelor of Science degree from Samford in 1986 and a master's degree in finance from DePaul University, Chicago, Ill. He also graduated with honors from Stonier Graduate School of Banking at the University of Delaware.

Active in civic and professional organizations, he serves on the Boards of Directors of the Middle Tennessee Chamber of Commerce, Nashville Symphony, Cheekwood Botanical Gardens, Nashville Visitors and Conventions Bureau and Martha O'Bryan Center. He has also been actively involved with United Way and Middle Tennessee Boy Scouts.

Alumni Association officers continuing to serve, listed with their graduation years, are Vice President, Activities, Kathy White Curtin, 1994; Vice President, Development, Michael Kopecky, 1996; and Alumni Council Executive Committee members—Kitty Brown, 2001; Jack Brymer, 1967; Rick Moon, 1977; and Katie Murnane, 2007.

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. The Wall Street Journal ranks Samford 1st nationally for student engagement and U.S. News & World Report ranks Samford 66th in the nation for best undergraduate teaching and 104th nationally for best value. Samford enrolls 5,683 students from 47 states and 19 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.