Dr. Robert Hamilton Davis
June 1943 – July 2013
Born June 26, 1943 in Detroit, Michigan Bob grew up in Grandview, Ohio and earned bachelors, masters and doctoral degrees in English and Communications from Ohio State University. He also studied at the Columbus School of Art & Design. While at Ohio State he met his wife, Gail, and also became very involved in Army ROTC, rising to Brigadier General. He then served one year in Vietnam after attending Airborne School.
In 1977 he joined the advertising and public relations faculty of Florida Technological University as an Assistant Professor – doubling its ranks in those early days of its communications program. He was tenured and promoted to Associate Professor in 1982, promoted to Full Professor in 1986 and served as Ad/PR Division Head for many years.
Shortly after arriving in Orlando, he joined the Florida Public Relations Association (FPRA) went on to hold numerous local and state offices, including serving as statewide President in 1988. FPRA honors have included: Member of the Year, Past President’s Award and the association annually awards the Bob Davis Scholarship. In 1995 he was presented its highest honor, the John W. Dillin Award.
He was a tireless promoter of FPRA’s Roast & Toast Program, raising hundreds of thousands of dollars for scholarships. Bob created Quotes, a UCF student chapter of FPRA that has gone on to teach leadership skills to countless graduates and created the Knight Image Awards to annually recognize outstanding student PR efforts.
In 2008, Bob retired from the faculty, and truly enjoyed retirement, finding time to take up ballroom dancing, focus a longtime interest in martial arts and keep up his love affair with typography by studying calligraphy. In the last year he learned to speak Spanish giving him a good reason to stay in touch with an old college friend, talking regularly in his newly acquired language.
Dr. Davis was preceded in death by his daughter, Sandy and is survived by his wife of 47 years, Dr. Gail Davis, his daughter, Meredith Peeples and son-in-law, Phillip.