University of Arkansas alumnus Stephen E. Darr, founder and executive director of Peacework, will visit campus on Wednesday and Thursday, April 8-9 as the Arkansas Alumni Association’s 2015 Johnson Fellow.
Darr is the Alumni Association’s sixth Johnson Fellow, named after Dr. Jeff BA’70 and Marcia Johnson. The Johnsons endowed the program with the purpose of bringing prominent alumni back to campus to engage and inspire students. Darr will interact with study abroad students and the Student Alumni Association, and speak to students in non-profit management, international relations and sustainability.
Peacework, which celebrated its 25th anniversary last year, manages partnerships between organizations with unique resources and communities and villages in developing countries, often between academic institutions and corporations in a variety of fields that match local development standards and objectives. The organization seeks to alleviate poverty and economic disparity and build bridges of global cooperation by bringing people in these developing countries together with colleges, universities and corporations. Peacework has partners in 25 countries and has managed projects for departments or programs at more than 60 institutions of higher learning and corporations.
Darr, who graduated from the U of A in 1977 with a bachelor’s degree in psychology, is especially proud of his decade-long collaboration with the University of Arkansas and ongoing affiliation with the Office of Study Abroad and International Exchange, including expansion of the Belize program and creation of the Vietnam program for U of A students. In July 2012, Peacework and the University of Arkansas Clinton School of Public Service established a fellowship to promote international field service education. The organization’s director of academic engagement is housed in Little Rock at the Clinton School. Half of the 30-member staff of Peacework are U of A alumni, described by Darr as intentional.
In addition to his degree from the University of Arkansas, Darr holds a Master of Divinity from Duke University and additional studies at Georgetown University and Virginia Tech.
He has authored or co-authored numerous articles related to international development and service in the Journal of Business Research, Organization Management in Construction, International Educator and several academic journals.