Utah Tech University

Past Presidents


Hugh M. Woodward


Known as the “Father of Dixie,” Woodward was the Pioneer President. Under his leadership, the original Administration Building and the Gymnasium were constructed on Main Street in downtown St. George. Through his efforts, approval was given for the establishment of Dixie Normal College in 1916. This guaranteed that St. George Stake Academy would offer two years of coursework post-high school.


Erastus S. Romney


While he was president, the St. George Stake Academy became known as Dixie Normal College, offering 60 hours of college work. Character-building was considered to be the primary duty of the college, as was maintaining high standards of scholarship and efficiency. He was well known for arousing enthusiasm in a group of students like none other, and he wisely directed their efforts.


Joseph K. Nicholes

1920-23 & 1927-33

During his presidency, Dixie Normal College became Dixie Junior College. In 1931, he received a letter from the LDS Church Commission of Education stating that all junior colleges would be terminated. He had a mind for finance, and since the college was destitute, his talents were needed and used. Through his firm leadership the college continued to exist under Utah State control.


Edgar M. Jenson


A methodical, precise, and professional leader, he initiated a program for teacher training. He organized and supervised the program, training teachers who served Washington County and the surrounding areas for many years (some serving their entire lifetime). A skilled artist, he created the Art Circle and Art Gallery at Dixie Junior College.


B. Glen Smith


While he was president, the LDS Church relinquished control of Dixie Junior College and turned it over to the State of Utah. No financial support was offered, and the faculty took salaries of hay, wood, nuts, fruit and anything parents and students could contribute for tuition. Smith offered leadership and operated in a smooth and efficient manner under stress and unfavorable circumstances.


Glenn E. Snow


He was known for his close-knit faculty and his and their dedication. Dixie Junior College had just come through a period of starvation, and he was instrumental in putting the college on its feet. He began the move to get Dixiana constructed, as he was determined to have a women’s dormitory because some were told not to send girls to Dixie Junior College as there were no suitable living accommodations.


Matthew M. Bentley


Bentley was known for holding Dixie Junior College together while faced once more with its doors being closed. He was keenly knowledgeable and diligent, and a financial wizard as well, handling every facet of administrative responsibility. Those who worked with Bentley say that the one year he was president was the most pleasant of the years at Dixie to that date.


Ellvert H. Himes


He brought the concept of a community college to Dixie and the vision of a new expanded campus location. He organized a campaign not only to solicit donations to finish the Dixiana dormitory, but for the new campus. The first block on the new campus was purchased in December of 1951, his first year as president.


Arthur F. Bruhn


Under his direction, Dixiana was finished and ready for inspection by Governor J. Bracken Lee, who had come to inform Bruhn that Dixie’s doors would have to be closed. After the inspection, and learning that Dixiana had been constructed entirely from community funding, Lee declared, “If this community wants Dixie College that badly, they should have it.” Bruhn also oversaw the move from the old campus to the current campus location.


Ferron C. Losee


Losee was known as “the Builder of the Dixie College Campus.” The name of the college was officially changed from Dixie Junior College to Dixie College while he was president. He oversaw the completion of the beautiful outside water fountain and the dedication of the Outdoor Mosaic Mural as well as the building of the Obert C. Tanner Amphitheater.


Rolfe Kerr


Kerr spearheaded the Cooperative Education work program with local businesses, brought about salary increases for the faculty, and promoted closer ties between the college and community. His leadership changed the word “competition” to “cooperation” between Dixie College, Dixie High School, and the Washington County School District.


Alton L. Wade


With clear vision and a keen sense of humor, Wade became the essence of the “Dixie Spirit.” He became the first president to see a Dixie College athletic team win a national championship when the Rebels won the 1985 NJCAA men’s basketball title. A beautiful Sculpture Garden was dedicated during his tenure, and computerization was introduced across campus. Hansen Stadium and the Dixie Bell Tennis Courts were built while he was president.


Douglas D. Alder


“An Academic Climate” was the slogan for Dixie College during Alder’s tenure. He emphasized the importance of academic rigor. Thanks to his fundraising efforts, the Val A. Browning Learning Resources Center was built and additions to the Science Building and Browning Library were completed during his administration. Construction of the Udvar-Hazy Business Building and Gardner Student Center also began. The college expanded continuing education offerings, particularly the Elderhostel program for senior citizens, and funding was secured for library additions. Additionally, Alder made a move to promote fine arts as a way to emphasize academic excellence.


Robert C. Huddleston


Tremendous growth occurred, student enrollment soared, and an average of $3 million in private donations was raised annually under the Huddleston administration. Huddleston oversaw the transformation from Dixie College to Dixie State College and the offering of the first baccalaureate programs. Dixie athletics won four national championships during his tenure. He established a community education television channel, increased faculty salaries, and supervised the building of the Dolores Doré Eccles Fine Arts Center, business and student services buildings, a seven-acre encampment mall, athletic facilities, and the Hurricane and Kanab extension campuses.


Lee G. Caldwell


During Caldwell’s term as president, DSU received approval to offer seven new baccalaureate degree programs, and a number of other offerings were created. Additionally, Dixie State’s intercollegiate athletics became a full member of the NCAA at the Division II level. Also under Caldwell’s leadership, the college began moving its health sciences program into the newly built Russell C. Taylor Health Science Center. DSC also received significant increases in legislative funding, and Caldwell worked tirelessly to improve the academic landscape and economic development opportunities in Washington and Kane counties.


Stephen D. Nadauld


Nadauld’s tenure at Dixie State included an unprecedented 30 percent increase in enrollment, the addition of 15 baccalaureate degree programs, the hiring of faculty members with doctorate degrees, and an increased number of graduating students. As Dixie State celebrated its centennial in 2011, Nadauld oversaw the construction of the Jeffrey R. Holland Centennial Commons, the Edward H. and Idonna E. Snow Science Center, memory gardens, several athletic additions and upgrades, and the University Tower. Thanks in large part to Nadauld’s effort, on February 16, 2013, Utah Governor Gary R. Herbert signed HB61 into law, granting Dixie State university status.


Richard B. Williams


Williams guided the institution in becoming one of the nation’s only open, inclusive, comprehensive, polytechnic universities. He also facilitated the addition of more than 200 academic programs including the institution’s first graduate degrees, increased student enrollment by 42 percent and grew scholarship funding by 90 percent. Additionally, he led Traiblazer Athletics to Division I status, oversaw the rebrand of the University’s athletic identity to the Trailblazers and the institutional name change to Utah Tech University, dramatically increased donations to the institution, and oversaw the construction or renovation of 42 campus facilities.