For the past five years, the role of chief of staff at the University of Central Arkansas has been filled by Conway's Kelley Erstine but come August, Amy Whitehead will be taking on the position.
Erstine announced his plan to leave the university in March. Employees were notified via email from President Houston Davis.
"I would like to make you all aware that Chief of Staff Kelley Erstine has accepted a position as CEO of the Independent Insurance Agents of Arkansas, a professional trade association of independent agents, effective August 15, 2019," Davis wrote to faculty and staff. "This is the same position Kelley held previously for eight years in Arkansas and for seven years at the North Carolina Agents Association."
Whitehead's new job was announced by UCA on Tuesday.
At this time, Whitehead serves as assistant vice president for community and workforce development in UCA's Division of Outreach and Community Engagement where she oversees the Center for Community and Economic Development, Community Development Institute (CDI), the Arkansas Coding Academy and online workforce initiatives. She herself is also a graduate of the CDI and the center and is a certified professional community and economic developer, designated by the National Community Development Council, according to her bio on the campus website.
"I am honored to support President Davis and the university by serving as chief of staff,” she said in a news release. “UCA has been an important part of my life for 17 years, and I will work hard every day to represent the university to the best of my abilities."
In her new role, Whitehead will:
• Manage the office of the president located in Wingo Hall.
• Provide support to Davis as he carries out the mission of UCA.
• Interact closely with varying on- and off-campus groups, including members of the board of trustees, students, faculty and staff, alumni, elected officials and other leaders.
• Provide supervision to the UCA Police Department, media relations and special events.
“I am excited to have Amy join our executive team as chief of staff," Davis said. "With two degrees from UCA and more than a decade working at the university, she brings tremendous experience within our campus and with our many external constituencies. I am certain she will do an exceptional job helping to advance and support the mission of the university.”
Whitehead, who has lived in Conway for 17 years, has earned both bachelor's and master's degrees from the university.
In regard to other accomplishments and recognitions, Whitehead also:
• Serves as a board member of the Arkansas Community Development Society, the University of Arkansas Cooperative's Extension's Breakthrough Solutions Advisory Council and CREATE Bridges Initiative.
• Received two appointments to Arkansas Geographical Information Systems Board.
• Is a regular contributer to the Arkansas Municipal League's City and Town Magazine.
• Was recently named to the 2019 Arkansas Business 40 Under 40 class.
• Serves as the vice chair of the Community Development Council.
• Appointed to a three-year term on the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis Community Development Advisory Council in 2016.