Council on Postsecondary Education
COUNCIL NAMES BRAD COWGILL PERMANENT PRESIDENT
The Council on Postsecondary Education appointed Brad Cowgill as its permanent president in a meeting today in Frankfort. Cowgill assumes the duties May 1.
Cowgill became interim president Sept. 1, 2007, replacing former president Tom Layzell. Cowgill’s current contract expires April 30, 2008.
Council Chairman John Turner said, “We are extremely pleased to offer this position to Brad. He has proven himself to be a very capable leader and has served with distinction during the past eight months.”
Among Cowgill’s accomplishments cited by Turner include leading a vigorous recommitment to the goals of postsecondary and adult education reforms by advancing a system-wide plan, issued in October, 2007, to “Double the Numbers” of college graduates in the state by 2020. The goals and objectives of the plan were the focus of a “performance based” budget request for postsecondary and adult education, drafted within 65 days following Cowgill’s arrival to the Council.
Also under Cowgill’s leadership, the Council convened the Kentucky Adult Learner Initiative, funded by the Lumina Foundation for Education. The initiative will create a comprehensive framework for adult learner policies and increase the responsiveness of postsecondary institutions to the needs of adult learners. A related initiative, Project Graduate, launched last fall and is a system-wide effort to re-enroll students with 90 or more credit hours.
Cowgill said that he is looking forward to serving the commonwealth as president of the Council. “I am very grateful for this opportunity. I pledge to work hard to maintain the momentum toward meeting the goals of postsecondary and adult education reforms,” he said.
Prior to coming to the Council as interim president, Cowgill served as the state budget director. Earlier, Cowgill practiced law with Stites and Harbison, PLLC, where his practice was concentrated in corporate matters and commercial litigation, with emphasis on construction-related claims and clients.
Cowgill received a bachelor’s degree in political science and economics from Vanderbilt University and a Juris Doctor degree from the University of Kentucky College of Law.
In recent years, Cowgill chaired the boards of the Lexington Community College, Saint Joseph Hospital, the United Way of the Bluegrass and the Continuing Legal Education Commission. For many years, he provided legal services and advice to the Fayette County Board of Education and its superintendents.
Kentucky is in the middle of the most dramatic economic and social transformation in its history. Double the Numbers: Kentucky’s Plan to Increase College Graduates explains that increasing bachelor’s degrees is the quickest, most direct way for Kentucky to increase its economic prosperity. College graduates earn more, are healthier, create a more robust economy, and enjoy a higher quality of life. The Double the Numbers plan outlines five statewide strategies for Kentucky to achieve this ambitious, but achievable goal. While this effort will not be easy, the benefits of Doubling the Numbers will be felt by all Kentuckians.