Skip to Content

News Release

Chancellor McCall Names Dr. Alisa White Sole Finalist for Sam Houston State University Presidency (6/18/20)

(AUSTIN) - Chancellor Brian McCall has selected Alisa White, Ph.D., as sole finalist for the presidency of Sam Houston State University. Dr. White, currently president of Austin Peay State University in Clarksville, Tennessee, was selected from a field of 120 candidates following a national search.

Dr. White, a Texas native, previously served as vice president for academic affairs at the University of Texas at Tyler and Midwestern State University. During her tenure as president of APSU, the university has experienced record enrollment growth, added new academic programs, increased its endowment, completed several large capital projects, and elevated its athletic program.

“I want to thank Regent Alan Tinsley for chairing a successful presidential search, Regents Charlie Amato and Duke Austin for their active participation, and all members of the advisory search committee for their time, energy, and thoughtful consideration throughout the search process,” said Chancellor McCall. “The quality of candidates in this search and of the successful finalist is a testament to Sam Houston State University’s strong national reputation.”

Dr. White earned a Ph.D. in Mass Communication and an M.S.L.S. degree from the University of Tennessee in Knoxville, and a B.A. in Business from Lee College (now Lee University) in Cleveland, Tennessee. In addition to her experience in Tennessee and Texas, she has held faculty and leadership positions in Alaska, Louisiana, and Georgia. Dr. White and her husband, Elliott Herzlich, a jeweler, have three married children and four grandchildren, with another grandchild due in July.

Dr. White said, “I spent several days on Sam Houston State University’s campus last year and, as impressed as I was by its beautiful architecture and grounds, I was even more impressed by campus community members who embrace the university’s role as a transformative agent in the lives of individuals, families, and communities. I appreciate Chancellor McCall for his confidence in me, and I appreciate the Texas State University System regents for their consideration.”

Texas law requires a 21-day waiting period before the Texas State University System’s governing board can consider Dr. White’s nomination. If confirmed, she will become Sam Houston State University’s 14th president, succeeding Dr. Dana Hoyt, who is retiring after 10 years of outstanding service to the university.

Academic Search, an executive search firm, assisted TSUS in the Sam Houston State University presidential search process.

Sam Houston State University is a member of the Texas State University System, which consists of seven institutions, including Lamar University (Beaumont), Sul Ross State University (Alpine, Del Rio, Eagle Pass, and Uvalde), Texas State University (San Marcos and Round Rock), Lamar Institute of Technology (Beaumont), Lamar State College Orange, and Lamar State College Port Arthur, serving more than 86,000 students.