Belhaven University Names New Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs
March 9, 2023 (Jackson, Miss.) – Belhaven University has appointed Dr. Audrey Kelleher as provost and vice president of academic affairs.
Kelleher served as vice president of adult and graduate marketing and development for 10 years before moving into her current role of vice president for adult, graduate, and online studies. For that last five years and under her leadership, Belhaven University initiated a massive effort to rewrite and strengthen the online curriculum, improve the online student experience, and add several new online programs, including doctoral-level education.
In addition, she spearheaded entrepreneurial partnerships with China, India, Canada, Third Mill Institute, and others. Kelleher also serves as Belhaven’s Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) accreditation liaison and represents Mississippi on the SACSCOC Peer Review Advisory Board.
Before joining the University, Kelleher served other educational institutions as associate vice president of enrollment services, dean/director of external campuses, and executive director for a non-profit organization. She also has 20 years of experience in business, coming up through the leadership ranks at J.C. Penney, until she was called to education, where she began as an elementary classroom teacher and then as principal.
Kelleher earned her Ph.D. in Leadership and Education from Barry University and her M.Ed. in Educational Leadership from the University of Central Florida (UCF). Her undergraduate work at UCF was a double major in management and marketing.
Belhaven University President Dr. Roger Parrott said, “I was pleased we received many applications from so many qualified candidates from across the nation and internationally, many of whom are serving as provost, vice president, or president. But at the end of this rigorous and prayerful process, the answer was found close to home. I'm thrilled that Dr. Audrey Kelleher will serve as provost and vice president of academic affairs. She has been a proven innovator and problem solver, demonstrating effectiveness in working collaboratively across lines of responsibilities and interdepartmentally.”
With Kelleher’s appointment, Belhaven is restructuring the academic division of the University to bring all academic functions under the umbrella of the provost's office. Parrott adds, “The timing is right to make this change because the initiatives Audrey was asked to lead these past five years have reached a point of maturity and stability. These functions will be guided by the solid leadership team currently serving.”
Kelleher and her husband, Jerry, celebrate 41 years of marriage and have three married daughters and two grandchildren. Following the retirement of Dr. Bradford Smith, Dr. Kelleher will begin her responsibilities as provost Monday, May 1.
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