Alumnus of Murray State University, Dr. Ken Atwater will be recognized as a Distinguished Alumnus on Thursday, Sept 15 at 6 p.m. in Pogue Library on the campus of Murray State University.
This award established in 1962 acknowledges the service of outstanding alumni who have held responsible positions and made significant contributions to their professions on a national, state and local level. The Distinguished Alumnus Award is the highest honor granted and honors those who have learned to give of themselves to promote their profession and the interest of their fellow man.
Dr. Atwater graduated from Murray State University in 1977 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Speech, Theatre and Sociology and in 1978 with a Master of Science degree in Guidance and Counseling. While at MSU, Dr. Atwater, was a member of Omega Psi Phi, Black Student Union Association, the Student Government Association and on the dormitory advisory group for Richmond Hall.
Dr. Atwater, is the current president of Hillsborough Community College in Florida. Founded in 1968 as part of a 28-member community college system, Hillsborough Community College (HCC) is currently the fifth largest district in the State of Florida, serving more than 48,000 students each year at its five campuses and three centers. HCC offers more than 150 academic programs, including 18 Associate in Arts tracks and 140 workforce programs.
Most recently, Dr. Atwater served for 9 years as the President of South Mountain Community College (SMCC). For the five years prior to becoming President at SMCC, he was Vice President for Student Services at Kellogg Community College in Battle Creek, Michigan. In all, Dr. Atwater has served in community college leadership positions for the past 30 years.
Dr. Atwater currently serves on the Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors, the Board of Directors for the United Way of Tampa Bay, the 1844 Council of the Tampa Metropolitan YMCA, the Board of Directors of Memorial Hospital, and the CEO Council. Dr. Atwater is also currently serving on the board of Directors of the American Association of Community Colleges, The College Board, AACC’s Commission on Diversity, Inclusion, and Equity, and as a board member of the Presidents’ Round Table of African American CEO’s.