CARS, without sacrificing its central on-campus mission as a Fulbright College program dedicated to scholarly attention to the history and culture of this region, aspires to serve these interests throughout the state of Arkansas.  Accordingly, the director is assisted by an advisory board made up of twelve prominent professional and avocational advocates for such purposes.  Eight are directly affiliated with UA’s Fayetteville campus, while four have important ties to other communities and institutions across the state.  Board members serve three-year terms, and are counted on for alerts and ongoing counsel concerning the whole range of events, programs, and research initiatives worthy of CARS support.


CARS director Robert Cochran, a Professor in UA’s Department of English, came to Fayetteville in 1976 with no inkling whatever of an occupational future rooted in regional studies. That path opened with a serendipitous nursing home encounter with Vance Randolph and Mary Parler Randolph, he a prolific hack writer and celebrated chronicler of Ozark traditional life, she a great folksong collector in her own right and long-time teacher of UA folklore classes—Cochran’s initial teaching assignments filled in at Parler’s lectern; his first book-length study was a biography of Randolph. Forty years later he’s still walking that path, most recently by serving as editor of the “Arkansas Character” series published by the University of Arkansas Press.

CARS Advisory Board

Mike Bieker (Director, University of Arkansas Press)
Lynda Coon (Dean, Honors College, UA Fayetteville)
Annette Dove (Executive Director. TOPPS, Inc., Pine Bluff)
Bill Gatewood (Director, Old State House Museum, Little Rock)
Lisa Hinrichsen (Associate Professor, Department of English, UA Fayetteville)
Ben Johnson (Ragsdale Professor of Arkansas Studies, Southern Arkansas University, Magnolia)
Allyn Lord (Director, Shiloh Museum of Ozark History, Springdale)
Scott Lunsford (Associate Director, Pryor Center for Arkansas Oral and Visual History, UA Fayetteville)
Stephanie Schulte (Associate Chair, Department of Communication, UA Fayetteville)
Calvin White (Chair, Department of History, UA Fayetteville)
Patrick Williams (Professor, Department of History, UA Fayetteville/Editor, Arkansas Historical Quarterly)
Joshua Youngblood (Research and Outreach Librarian, Special Collections, UA Library, UA Fayetteville)