Michael Benson

President and Professor of Government, Eastern Kentucky University

Michael T. Benson is President and Professor of Government at Eastern Kentucky University. Prior to his chief executive role at Eastern Kentucky, he was the 15th President of Southern Utah University. Born in Utah and raised in Texas, Michael completed his doctorate in modern Middle Eastern history from the University of Oxford (St. Antony’s College). He also earned a master’s degree cum laude from the Mendoza College of Business at the University of Notre Dame in non-profit administration, and a B.A. cum laude from Brigham Young University with a major in political science and double minor in English and history. Michael has worked and studied abroad for seven years in Italy, England and Israel. His book, Harry S. Truman and the Founding of Israel (Praeger 1997) has been hailed as a landmark work in the area of American foreign policy and the U.S. presidency. He has also served as a consulting historian and essayist for both the Skirball Cultural Center in Los Angeles and the Harry S. Truman Presidential Library in Independence, Missouri. He and his co-author, Hal Boyd, recently completed a book, College for the Commonwealth: Why American Democracy Needs Higher Education, which will be released by the University Press of Kentucky in fall 2017.