University of Houston System chancellor names sole finalist for UH-Victoria president

HOUSTON, June 6, 2011– Philip D. Castille has been selected as the sole finalist for the presidency of the University of Houston-Victoria (UHV).

Castille, a veteran educator, respected scholar and experienced administrator, currently holds the position of special assistant to the chancellor at the University of Hawaii at Hilo. Previously, he served as vice chancellor for academic affairs at that institution. Castille also served as a professor of English at the University of Houston-Downtown from 1981-1994.

UH System Chancellor Renu Khator made the sole finalist recommendation today to UH System (UHS) Board of Regents Chair Carroll Robertson Ray. Texas law requires that the board give public notice at least 21 days prior to a meeting in which final action is taken on the employment of a university chancellor or president. The UHS board can meet any time on or after June 27, 2011 to confirm Castille.

“Dr. Castille offers a wealth of administrative experience, academic insight and personal commitment to the ideals of higher education,” said Chancellor Khator. “We are fortunate to have someone of his caliber available to continue our efforts to help UHV fully realize its potential as a destination university.”

Khator thanked the search committee, chaired by UH-Clear Lake President William Staples, and praised the leadership of Don Smith, who has served as interim president at UHV since August 2010.

Castille expressed excitement at the prospect of being confirmed as the next president of UHV.

“I greatly enjoyed my visit to the campus this spring,” he said. “I look forward to getting to know the students, faculty and staff and working with the whole community to plan our future as a fast-developing institution with a strong reputation for student success.”

Castille cited his decade-plus tenure at UH-Downtown as the foundation for “the basic lessons I have learned about the importance of higher education.” As a result, he said, “the opportunity to return to the UH System is very fulfilling.”

Castille earned a Ph.D. in English from Tulane University as well as a bachelor’s degree in philosophy and English. He has a master’s degree in English from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

He has held positions at Tulane, the University of Memphis, Louisiana Tech University and Eastern Washington University, where he was the founding dean of the College of Arts & Letters.

Castille is married and has a young son, Edward.

The University of Houston-Victoria, located in the heart of the Coastal Bend region since 1973 in Victoria, Texas, offers courses leading to more than 80 academic programs in the schools of Arts & Sciences; Business Administration; and Education, Health Professions & Human Development. UHV provides face-to-face classes at its Victoria campus, as well as an instructional site in Katy, Texas, and online classes that students can take from anywhere. UHV supports the American Association of State Colleges and Universities Opportunities for All initiative to increase awareness about state colleges and universities and the important role they have in providing a high-quality and accessible education to an increasingly diverse student population, as well as contributing to regional and state economic development.

Shawn Lindsey