Adkins Named 'One to Watch' by Celebrate Arkansas

Meredith Adkins
Whit Pruitt

Meredith Adkins

Meredith Adkins was named to the 2022 "Ones to Watch" class by Celebrate Arkansas magazine, honoring her among the "trendsetters and trailblazers in the Northwest Arkansas community."

Adkins serves as director for NWA Industry and Community Engagement in the Division of Economic Development. The magazine praised her work in this role, building "bridges between the community, industry partners, and the numerous and varied resources at the university."

"Meredith is so talented that I'm not surprised at all that she was selected for this honor," said Mike Malone, vice chancellor for economic development. "She's good at many, many things but one of the things I love is that she's a great connector. Meredith works tirelessly to help organizations and industry find the resources, knowledge, talent and expertise at the U of A to solve problems and build upon opportunities in our state."

Adkins recently completed her doctorate in public policy — community development at the U of A, one of a number of remarkable achievements in her education and career. After earning a bachelor of arts in political science from the University of Colorado, Adkins enrolled at Colorado State to pursue a master's degree in the same field. While at CSU she served as a public policy intern in the U.S. Department of State in the Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor.

Following her M.A. she took on a new challenge as a public diplomacy intern at the U.S. Embassy in Nigeria where she organized U.S. speaker program tours across the country and worked with its educational advising center. This role led her to an international education foundation and a work assignment in Senegal where she served as regional representative for a teacher training center.

Since returning to her hometown of Fayetteville she has held a number of roles of increasing responsibility at the U of A from the Office of Study Abroad to the Sam M. Walton College of Business to the Division of Economic Development. Along the way she has devoted herself to causes that make a positive difference, including cofounding the People, Planet, and Profit Project — a graduate student-led social enterprise consultancy — and working with Arkansas Global Changemakers and Arkansas Impact Investing.


Andy Albertson, director of strategic communications and engagement
Institute for Integrative and Innovative Research


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