James Davis


James A. (Jim) Davis stepped down as President of Shenandoah University in 2008 after 26 years of service as President of the institution, after which he joined a higher education search firm and worked for three years conducting searches for presidents, vice presidents and deans at private and public colleges and universities.  Dr. Davis subsequently joined AGB Search, where he has been engaged in numerous searches for senior higher education executives.  Dr. Davis has most recently conducted searches for:

  • Clark Atlanta University (GA) – President
  • Gammon Theological Seminary (GA) – President
  • Bethune Cookman University (FL) – President
  • Oakland City University (IN) – President
  • Centenary University (NJ) – President

During his career as President of Shenandoah University, he served in executive leadership roles in the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools and chaired more than 20 reaffirmation committees.  He served as president of the Council of Independent Colleges in Virginia, president of NASCUMC, the United Methodist association of presidents, Board member of NAICU, CIC, and was a member of the University Senate of the United Methodist Church.  Dr. Davis also chaired the EIIA Insurance consortium for 130 colleges and universities.  He has travelled extensively to more than 30 countries and established international relationships with colleges and universities.

Earlier in his career, Dr. Davis served as Senior Vice President, Academic Dean, Division Chairman and a tenured faculty member at Ferrum College. He served in many lay leadership roles in the United Methodist Church and as a member of many boards and agencies.  His master’s thesis, 51st Regiment, Virginia Volunteers was published in 1970 and stayed in circulation for more than 30 years.  He recently published a small volume entitled, Rules of Civility for the Modern Society and it has more than 20,000 copies in circulation.

More than 30 years ago, Dr. Davis served three terms in the House of Delegates of the Virginia General Assembly.  He has used this experience to assist many colleges and universities and higher education groups.  He has subsequently been appointed by four different governors of the Commonwealth to state boards and agencies and recently served on the Commonwealth Transportation Board.  He has served on the boards of the Durell Foundation, Datatel Foundation, and Public Television, and has led United Way campaigns. He is a Senior Member of Rotary International, Chairman of the Board of Westminster Cantebury Retirement Community and Board member of the Winchester Medical Center.  He is currently a Director of the National Fruit Products Company.

Dr. Davis holds an Associate in Arts Degree from Ferrum College, Bachelor of Arts degree in history at Randolph-Macon College, Master of Arts degree from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University in history, and Ph.D. from Florida State University in higher education administration.  He has been awarded honorary degrees from Bridgewater College, Randolph Macon College, Ulyanovsk State University (Russia), Kuyshu University of Health Sciences (Japan), Tokashima Bunri University (Japan).