New Cumberland University Board of Trust Chairman Named After Longtime Chairman Retires

Sam Hatcher and WP Bone

After serving three terms as the Cumberland University Chairman of the Board since 2017, W.P. Bone, III, passed the gavel to Sam Hatcher. The Cumberland University Board of Trust unanimously elected Hatcher as the new Chairman during their June meeting. 

Hatcher, longtime Lebanon resident and community leader, graduated from Cumberland University in 1973 before pursuing a career as a journalist for the Lebanon Democrat and MainStreet Media. He has served as a Cumberland University Trustee since 1980. 

“Our university has absolutely soared under the leadership of Chairman Bone and for this we are all so very grateful,” said Hatcher. “Over the past six years we’ve seen new enrollment records, extraordinary academic achievements, many successes on the athletic fields, and so, so many other recorded accomplishments.”

Hatcher believes Cumberland’s future is more promising than ever before in its 182-year history, as a result of the solid foundation laid by leadership.

“The school is financially sound and has an outstanding and dedicated Board of Trust comprised of members who are recognized as national and regional leaders in the areas of banking, the law, professional sports, healthcare, business, and education. The university, which many say is no longer just a local school because it is attracting students from almost all of Tennessee– 39 states and 48 countries– will certainly continue to make strides forward, see new benchmarks made, and new records established.”

Hatcher served in the Tennessee National Guard for more than 35 years before continuing to influence his community in a positive way through civic engagement. He is a director and serves as treasurer of the Nashville and Eastern Railroad Authority and serves or has served on the boards of Cumberland Region Tomorrow, Equal Chance for Education, Alive Hospice, The Community Foundation of Wilson County, the Lebanon-Wilson County Chamber of Commerce, and Lebanon’s University Medical Center Hospital (now Vanderbilt Wilson County). He is a former member of the faculty of Cumberland and Lipscomb Universities.

“I am so very appreciative to have the opportunity to be a part of the Cumberland story going forward and to share in this exciting period with other Trustees, President Stumb, and members of the faculty and staff,” Hatcher said.

“W.P.’s leadership has helped transform this university over the past six years, making it possible for Cumberland to extend its reach across the nation and around the world,” said President Paul C. Stumb. “I cannot overstate how grateful we are for his generous leadership. While I will miss having him as our Board Chairman, I am certain he will continue to be a vital member of our board, and I am confident that our esteemed university will continue to rise under the direction of new Chairman Sam Hatcher.”

At the conclusion of the meeting, the university presented Bone with the first-ever Labry School of Science, Technology, and Business Professorship in celebration of his service and numerous contributions to the university and Middle Tennessee. Because of many generous donors, this Labry School Professorship will provide a faculty member the funding to support projects such as course upgrades, research opportunities, experiential learning, and teaching enhancements.

Cumberland University will announce the recipient of this professorship during Convocation in August. To learn more about Hatcher and Cumberland University’s Board of Trust, visit

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