Harding University announces College of Sciences leadership changes

Provost Larry Long has named Dr. Ben Bruner, assistant professor of biology, and Dr. Ron Smith, assistant professor of mathematics, chairs of their respective departments effective June 1, 2013.

Bruner replaces Dr. Mike Plummer, who agreed to serve as biology department chair until the end of the 2012-13 school year. Bruner, a graduate of Oklahoma Christian University, came to Harding in 2008. He has a Ph.D. from University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center; his research focused in the area of immunopathology.

“Ben Bruner is a bright, young leader who has the potential to continue the good work already going on in the biology department and to advance those programs further,” Long said. “In the context of our growth at both the undergraduate and professional levels in health sciences, Bruner’s leadership will be instrumental to our work.”

Smith, who has served in the mathematics department since 2007, will replace Dr. Steve Smith, who is stepping down from the position after 27 years at the conclusion of the spring 2013 semester. Ron Smith came to Harding in 2005 to serve as secondary math specialist in the Cannon-Clary College of Education. In 2012, he completed his doctorate in mathematics education at University of Tennessee.

“Ron Smith is a solid teacher and a committed professional in the field of mathematics education,” Long said. “He brings the skills and experience that will allow him to do a very good job as chair of the mathematics department. I look forward to working with him in that capacity.”

Harding is the largest private university in Arkansas with 6,815 students and attracts more National Merit Scholars than any other private university in the state. Harding also maintains campuses in Australia, Chile, England, France, Greece, Italy and Zambia. For more information visit www.harding.edu.