by Austin DuVall
The Winthrop Rockefeller Institute is pleased to announce it has hired Carder Hawkins as chief strategy officer of the nonprofit organization. As such, Hawkins will be responsible for developing, executing, communicating, and sustaining strategic initiatives that support the mission of the Institute.
“As a lifelong resident of Perry County, Carder has deep ties to Petit Jean Mountain and the River Valley area,” Janet Harris, Institute Executive Director/CEO, said. “A well-respected and experienced administrator with an excellent record in public service, Carder brings strong communication, leadership, and collaboration skills to our senior team. I look forward to his leadership in helping us perpetuate the legacy of Winthrop Rockefeller and his collaborative approach to creating transformational change.”
Hawkins comes to the Institute following a 20-year career in state government, which began with serving in the Arkansas Secretary of State’s elections division for more than eight years. He also served as the Arkansas Insurance Department’s chief information officer and as deputy director for the Arkansas Department of Information Systems — a position that oversaw the department’s human resources, legislative affairs, fiscal, procurement, security, enterprise architecture, and IT planning teams. Most recently, Hawkins served as the chief information officer for the Arkansas Division of Workforce Services.
“The decision to leave a long career in state government and join the Institute boiled down to where I could make the most impact, make the biggest difference for Arkansas, and help the most people,” Hawkins said. “Practicing and evangelizing the Rockefeller Ethic with an experienced team is a dream come true. The possibilities for this organization and its people to do great things for Arkansas and our region is endless.”
Hawkins holds a bachelor’s degree in political science with an emphasis in international relations from the University of Central Arkansas. He was also part of the university’s inaugural Community Development Masters class and completed a master’s degree in community development while working full-time at the Arkansas Secretary of State’s office.