Chuck Ambrose

EdD, 1989


A fervent advocate for servant leadership and engaged learning, Dr. Charles (Chuck) Ambrose became the University of Central Missouri’s 15th president in 2010.  His dedication to new approaches in higher education to accelerate the time it takes for students to complete a degree, reduce college debt load, and provide experiential learning led to the establishment of The Missouri Innovation Campus in 2012.  With nearly 14,000 students, UCM has experienced record enrollment under Dr. Ambrose’s leadership where he has sought to keep tuition costs down, provided leadership for the largest capital building project in the university’s history, The Crossing – South at Holden, and established the Learning to a Greater Degree Contract for student completion. 

Prior to joining UCM, Dr. Ambrose became Pfeiffer University’s youngest president at age 36 and served for 12 years.   His career in higher education administration also took him to Carson-Newman College, Western Carolina University, Furman University, and to the American Association of State Colleges and Universities, where he served as executive assistant to the president. 

President Ambrose attended Furman University, where he was a four-year letterman and captain of the soccer team. After graduating from Furman with a bachelor’s degree in sociology, he earned two advanced degrees in higher education administration, a master’s from the University of Louisville and a Doctor of Education degree from the University of Georgia. 

Dr. Ambrose and his wife, Kris, a former golf professional, have two children, Charlie, who received his master’s degree from the University of Northern Colorado, and Kathryn, who is currently pursuing her master’s degree at the University of Edinburgh.