When Dr. Tommy Davis first returned to his alma mater in 1990, East Mississippi Community College was under threat of closure by the state due to its financial condition.
In the 14 years since, the school that was once the smallest community college in the state has experienced a dramatic turnaround.
"We've now passed all but five of them. And so, our rapid growth has to be one of the major accomplishments that I have enjoyed, with the help of many people," said Davis. "The board of trustees, faculty and staff, alumni and other supporters, and the Kemper and Lauderdale boards of supervisors and the legislature."
Davis started his career as a coach, first at Pachuta, then at Meridian High School, and on to other locations during a 21-year period, before moving into administration.
Now Davis is looking forward to taking care of other business.
"Rita, my wife, has some property down at Rose Hill in Jasper County, and she and I own the farm that I grew up on in Calhoun County. But we haven't had much time to take care of those things," Davis said.
The EMCC board has already formed a search committee to find a new president. June 30 will end Davis' 49 years in education. He and his wife have bought a house in Meridian.