David Barnett

Acting President & Chief Financial Officer, Brenau University


David L. Barnett, PhD, serves as the Acting President and Executive Vice President/CFO at Brenau University. A native of Georgia, he earned a doctoral degree in educational leadership and organizational development and education specialist degree in educational administration at the University of Louisville after completing a master of divinity degree at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary and bachelor degree at Mercer University. Barnett received many academic awards and honors as highlighted by a Graduate Dean’s Citation at the University of Louisville. 

Barnett has served in executive leadership roles at six public and private universities in Kentucky and Georgia. In addition to his current role serving as university president, he has held positions including enterprise risk officer, chief financial officer, academic dean, dean of students, and dean of distance learning programs. Barnett currently serves on many non-profit boards and is a member of the Executive Committee of the Board of Trustees for the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges. 

In addition to Barnett’s current administrative role, he teaches doctoral level educational finance courses and chairs doctoral student dissertations. He has presented at numerous national and regional professional conferences on the topics related to strategic planning for accreditation, finance in higher education, adult learning theory, and effective distance learning programs.