Parkinson Appointed Coker College Provost

For more information, contact Barb Steadman - 843.857.4199

HARTSVILLE, S.C. – April 7, 2011 – Dr. Tracy Parkinson, dean of the faculty and associate vice president for academic affairs at King College in Bristol, Tenn., has been appointed to serve as Provost of Coker College beginning July 1. 

“It is with great excitement that we welcome Dr. Parkinson to Coker and to our community,” said Coker College President Robert Wyatt.  “The selection committee was overwhelmingly enthusiastic in its recommendation, seeing in Dr. Parkinson both the drive and the talent to help Coker realize the highest ideals of a liberal arts institution of higher learning.”

As Provost, Parkinson will be responsible for the planning, development, coordination, review, and administration of Coker’s academic programs. 

“I could not be more pleased to have been selected,” said Parkinson.  “It was going to take an exceptional opportunity for me to leave a place I love, but I think I've found something special at Coker and in the Hartsville community. 

“The enthusiasm for learning and the sense of common purpose among faculty, staff and students is remarkable.  Coker has a wonderful heritage and a very bright future, and I feel fortunate to have the chance to be a part of it,” he added.

Parkinson served at King College, also a member of Conference Carolinas, since 1999. While he began his career teaching French, throughout his tenure Parkinson served in various leadership roles, including as the acting director of athletics, dean of the faculty, acting dean of the school of business and economics, chair of the division of humanities and social sciences and chair of the department of languages and literatures.

Parkinson has a Bachelor of Arts with honors in French and Spanish from Carson-Newman College and a Master of Arts in French Language and Literature from the University of Tennessee and a Doctor of Philosophy in Modern Foreign Languages and Literatures also from the University of Tennessee. He has also continued scholarly pursuits in such international venues as American University of Paris, University of Santiago de Compostela in Spain and the Salzburg Global Seminar in Austria. 

He received the 2008-2009 Outstanding Young Alumnus award from Carson-Newman and served on the institution’s alumni association board of directors.

Parkinson replaces Provost Patricia Lincoln, dean of the faculty and professor of biology, who is retiring after 28 years of service to the college.


Coker College readies undergraduates for personal and professional success through a distinctive four-year program that emphasizes a practical application of the liberal arts as well as hands-on and discussion-based learning within and beyond the classroom. Coker is ranked among the “Best Colleges” in the South by U.S. News & World Report as well as The Princeton Review. Located in Hartsville, S.C., Coker is within two hours of the cultural, financial and recreational resources of Charlotte, Columbia, Charleston and Myrtle Beach.

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