Blanchard Elected Chairman of the ATU Board

Charles H. Blanchard of Russellville was elected by his fellow trustees to serve as chairman of the Arkansas Tech University Board of Trustees for the 2018 calendar year during the board meeting at Chambers Cafeteria West Dining Room on Wednesday, Jan. 17.

A resident of Russellville for more than 35 years, Blanchard is chairman and chief executive officer for First State Bank. He joined the bank and brought it to Russellville in 1999. Previously, Blanchard was with First National Bank of Russellville from 1981-98.

Blanchard is a former president of the Russellville Chamber of Commerce and was the 2001 Russellville Citizen of the Year. He has served as treasurer and campaign drive chairman for the River Valley United Way.

He is a past president of the Russellville Industrial Development Corporation and the Russellville School Board. Blanchard was chairman of the Arkansas Bankers Association in 2011-12.

Blanchard’s wife, Cynthia Blanchard, was a member of the Arkansas Tech faculty from 1981-2007. They have two grown children: Mary Pat Blanchard Hardman and Chip Blanchard.

Gov. Mike Beebe appointed Blanchard to the Arkansas Tech Board of Trustees in 2009 and 2014. Blanchard’s second term as a trustee expires on Jan. 14, 2019.

Other Arkansas Tech Board of Trustees officers for 2018 elected on Wednesday are Fritz Kronberger of Russellville, who will serve as vice chairman, and Tom Kennedy of Little Rock, who will serve as secretary.

Eric Burnett of Fort Smith and Stephanie Duffield of Russellville complete the five-person board for Arkansas Tech in 2018.