Commissioner's Bio

Dr. Ken Warden began service as Commissioner of the Arkansas Division of Higher Education on June 1, 2023; however, his breadth of work in higher education is extensive.  Having worked in adult education, two-year colleges, and university systems, Dr. Warden has experience in program design, project management, community partnerships, career pathways, grant implementation, and senior level academic leadership.

Dr. Warden previously worked for the University of Arkansas – Fort Smith for nine years, most recently serving as the Associate Vice Chancellor for Compliance and Legislative Affairs. Dr. Warden also served as the Dean of the College of Applied Science and Technology for six years and as the Associate Vice Chancellor for Workforce Development for one year.
Dr. Warden spent seventeen years working with Arkansas Tech University – Ozark serving as the Department Chair of Automotive Service Technology, Business and Industry Coordinator, and Chief Officer for Business and Community Outreach. 
His research interests are focused on adult learners and non-traditional students, credit and non-credit workforce aligned programs, student retention, and sustainability initiatives on college campuses.
Dr. Ken Warden holds a Doctorate in Education in Workforce Development from the University of Arkansas, a Master of Education in Educational Leadership from Arkansas Tech University, a Bachelor of Science in Vocational Education from the University of Arkansas, and an Associate of Applied Science in Automotive Service from Westark Community College, now University of Arkansas – Fort Smith.


Commissioner's Photo