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Miles K. Davis, Ph.D.

portrait of President DavisMiles K. Davis, Ph.D.
Linfield University President

Dr. Miles K. Davis is the 20th president of Linfield University. Davis has a Ph.D. in human and organizational sciences from George Washington University, an M.A. in human resource development from Bowie State University and a B.A. in communications from Duquesne University. He was the inaugural chair of the management science department at the Harry F. Byrd Jr. School of Business at Shenandoah University and became the founding director of its Institute for Entrepreneurship. He went on to become the dean of the Harry F. Byrd, Jr. School of Business.

President Davis is an authority on entrepreneurship whose most recent work focuses on integrity, values and principles in the business world, as well as faith-based entrepreneurship. He helps organizations manage cultural and structural changes, strategic planning, leadership development and strategic growth initiatives.

He is a member of the Society of Leadership Fellows at St. George’s House (their first non-UK-based member), an organization based out of Windsor Castle in England that brings together world leaders in a variety of fields to analyze contemporary issues. Davis is also the first college president to come out of The Ph.D. Project, a network that helps members of underrepresented communities attain doctorates and become leaders in higher education. Recently, Davis was voted in as Chair of the Board of Directors of the Oregon Alliance of Independent Colleges & Universities. He was also appointed to the Board of Directors of the National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities (NAICU). NAICU is the official policy and lobbying arm of nonprofit private higher education in the USA.

Davis has won numerous awards including awards of service from the NAACP and the “Drum Major for Justice Award” from the United Churches of Christ. He has also won recognition for his interfaith work from the Islamic Society of North American and the United Methodist Church.

President Davis is a much sought-after speaker on the topics of organizational change, ethical, moral and principled leadership, and the need to transform higher education.

Curriculum Vitae

  • Education

    • B.A., communications, Duquesne University
    • M.A., human resource development, Bowie State University
    • Ph.D., management and organizational sciences, The George Washington University
  • Professional development

    • Harvard Graduate School of Education: New Presidents Program
    • Harvard Graduate School of Education: Institute for Management & Leadership in Education
    • Council of Independent Colleges: New Presidents Institute
    • Council of Independent Colleges: Senior Leadership Academy American
    • Council of Education: Advancing to the Presidency Workshop
    • TJ Walker Media Training
  • Academic experience

    • President, Linfield University, 2018 - present
    • Dean emeritus, The Harry F. Byrd, Jr. School of Business, Shenandoah University, 2019 - present
    • Dean, The Harry F. Byrd, Jr. School of Business, Shenandoah University, 2012 -2018
    • Professor of management and George Edward Durell endowed chair of management, The Harry F. Byrd, Jr. School of Business, Shenandoah University, 2012 -2018
    • Founding director, Institute for Entrepreneurship, 2006 - 2012
    • Inaugural chair of management science department, The Harry F. Byrd, Jr. School of Business, Shenandoah University, 2003 - 2005
    • Associate professor of management, The Harry F. Byrd, Jr. School of Business, Shenandoah University, 2006 - 2012
    • Assistant professor of management, The Harry F. Byrd, Jr. School of Business, Shenandoah University, 2006 - 2012
  • Board seats and leadership positions

  • Honors and awards

    • The Ph.D. Project Hall of Fame, 2018
    • NAACP Award of Service, 2018
    • Best Documentary or Public Affairs Program, Virginia Association of Broadcasters, 2017
    • Silver Good Citizenship Medal, The National Society of the Sons of the American Revolution, 2015
    • Dr. Martin Luther King Award of Justice, United Covenant Churches of Christ, 2013
    • Board of Trustees Resolution of Appreciation, International Day Convocation, Shenandoah University, 2006
    • Outstanding Teaching Award, the Harry F. Byrd, Jr. School of Business, Shenandoah University, 2006
    • Exemplary Teacher Award, the United Methodist Church and Shenandoah University, 2004
    • The Wilkins Award, Shenandoah University, 2003
    • Award for Exemplary Service to Student Body, Shenandoah University, 2003
    • Award for Exemplary Service to Student Body, Shenandoah University, 2002
  • Select keynotes and presentations

    Within the past five years:

    • Power Breakfast, The Portland Business Journal, on Zoom, September 2021
    • The Case for a Ph.D., The Ph.D. Project Annual Conference, on Zoom, November 2020
    • Successful Leadership is a Journey, African American Leadership Institute, On Zoom, October 2020
    • More Than a Dreamer: Martin Luther King, Jr., Annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Day Celebration, The Vancouver Street Baptist Church, Portland Oregon, January 2020
    • What’s Love Got to Do with It, First Baptist Church, McMinnville, OR, March 2019
    • Leadership in a VUCA Environment. John Maxwell’s Live2Lead, Stephen City, VA, October 2017
    • Diversity and Inclusion in the era of Donald Trump, The Forum National Conference, Minneapolis, MN, February 2017
    • Diversity, Equity and Inclusion: A Global Perspective (AACSB International) Annual Conference, Zoom Conference. December 2020
    • Diversity and Inclusion: Challenges and Opportunities. Eastern Academy of Management-International (EAMI) Biennial International Conference, Gold Coast, Australia. June 2017
    • International Symposium on Technology Entrepreneurship and Incubation. Islamabad, Pakistan, August 2016. Sponsored by Ministry of Information Technology, Government of Pakistan
    • How Religion and Entrepreneurship Interact, AOM Annual Conference, Anaheim, California, August 2016
    • Corporate Value Perspective: Leverage Your School’s Expertise, B-School Communications and
      Development Symposium (Plenary Speaker), March 2016
    • At the intersection of Old and New: Changing from the old AACSB standards to the new AACSB Standards – implications for faculty and schools, EAM-I Biennial International Conference, Lima, Peru, June 2015
    • Religiosity and Religious Expression: Outcomes among Christians, Muslims and Orthodox Jews, AOM Annual Conference, Vancouver, Canada, August 2015
  • Publications

    Peer-reviewed articles within the past five years:

    • Davis, M. K., and Thies, C. (2017). Perceptions of “Friendliness” by Small Business. Virginia Economic Journal.
    • Davis, M. K., Ghoul, A. G., and Thies, C. F. (2017). The Performance of Faith-Based Mutual Funds: A Matched-Pair Approach. Journal of Applied Business and Economics. 19(7), 75-83.
    • Gouldey, B. K., Davis, M. K., Thies, C. F., and Yavis, M. (2016). Stakeholder Theory and Market Value Rule. Financial Decision, 28(1).
    • Davis, M. K. (2015). Doing Business as a Business School: The Need for a Changing Model of Higher Education. Estrategia, 9(37).
    • Davis, M. K. (2013). Entrepreneurship: An Islamic perspective. International Journal of Entrepreneurship and Small Business Management, 20(1) 63-69.
    • Slocum, A. and Davis, M. K. (2013). Teaching and evaluating differences in an in international entrepreneurial environment. Academy of Business Disciplines Journal. Special Edition.

    Book chapters within the past five years:

    • Davis, M. K. and Thies, C. F. (In press). Religious and Wealthy: Can one be both? In Blessed, J. G. Smith and E. D. Renslow (Eds.). Information Age Publishing, Charlotte, NC.
    • Davis, M. K. (2018). Self-Efficacy and the Making of a Dean: An auto ethnographical exploration. In Black administrators in higher education: Auto-ethnographic exploration and personal narratives, T. Hocks and L. Watson (Eds.). Hamilton Books, Littlefield Publishing Group. New York, NY.
    • Davis, M. K. and Winn, J. (2016). Islamic Leadership Models: Lessons from Early Islam, In Entrepreneurship and management in an Islamic Context. V. Ramadani, L.P Dana, S. Gergui-Rashiti, and V. Ratten (Eds.). Springer Publishing: New York, NY.

Select media

President Davis speaking at the podium

Mar. 7, 2022

Linfield President Miles K. Davis named a Portland Business Journal executive of the year

The Portland Business Journal’s annual Executives of the Year awards honor leaders in six categories, including presidents. Nominees for the awards are evaluated by a panel of outside judges based on critical strategy, guidance and management leading to exceptional performance.

President Davis outside Riley and Walker Halls

Sept. 17, 2020

President Davis elected as chair of The Alliance

The Board of Trustees of the Oregon Alliance of Independent Colleges and Universities (“The Alliance”) elected Miles K. Davis, president of Linfield University, as its new chair.

Dr. Davis in deep thought

Feb. 10, 2020

Linfield president Dr. Miles K. Davis elected to the NAICU board

Linfield College president Miles K. Davis was elected to the board of the National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities (NAICU), the organization announced February 5.