Humble servant

David Crouch | 1948-2022

From 1987 to 2016, David Crouch directed Public Relations, now known as University Communications and Marketing. As this magazine considered how to pay tribute to the humble man who served the University for 46 years, it seemed fitting to share thoughts from social media by some of those who knew him best.


David Crouch was a connection point between Harding and so many alumni, donors and friends. As such, he never got the kudos that he deserved for the behind-the-scenes support that he provided for the alma mater he loved so much. … His years at Harding were Harding at its best. 

Tim Bruner, director of information 1976-77

Perhaps the four words — humble servant of God — best describe my mentor and friend David Crouch. He set the example of a life filled with intentionality and love. When (my daughter) Becca received an encouraging, congratulatory and humorous email from him after he learned she passed her boards this fall, she said, “We don’t deserve this sweet man.” With David, God gave us more than we deserve.

Tom Buterbaugh, director of publications 1991-present

I don’t think I know anyone else with his gift to make so many of us feel so special while encouraging us to fulfill our personal and professional potentials.

April Fatula, director of news services 2000-08

He made a huge eternal difference at Harding, a quiet giant in every aspect of his life.

Kay Gowen, assistant director of public relations 1987-89

David Crouch was an unbelievable man. He meant a great deal to me and the kids in our track and cross-country programs. He made us feel important. He traveled the country to take pictures for us. … He made Harding a good place.

Stephen Guymon, head track and cross-country coach 2002-19

He was so much more than a friend. He was a mentor and a godly example who challenged me to always be better with a camera but more importantly to have a stronger faith. I will deeply miss his visits and being able to learn from his deep wisdom and experience.

Jeff Montgomery, director of photographic services 1991-present

His humility was inspiring. His love for his family was precious. His intentionality of asking me about my life and family made me feel at home in our office. When he retired, I missed getting to just sit around and talk to him. I loved catching up with him when I could, and that often happened through phone calls over the last couple of years. … He was a great man. 

Hannah Owens, director of digital media 2011-20

David Crouch (’70), 74, of Searcy, died Jan. 31, 2022. During his 46-year career with the University, he served in various roles including director of Placement and Alumni Relations and director of the Office of Public Relations for 29 years before retiring in March 2016. A member of the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education, he served CASE District IV in many capacities including 10 years on the organization’s board and two terms as treasurer and received their 2010 Distinguished Achievement Award. He also served nationally on the CASE Commission for Marketing and Communications. He was a member of College Church of Christ where he was a deacon. A member of Searcy Optimist Club, he served the club as president, vice president and secretary/ treasurer. In 2021 he was named Optimist Citizen of the Year. He is survived by his wife of 52 years, Lola Murry (’69); three children, Tracy Cunningham (’93), Eric (’99) and Brandon (’01); and five grandchildren.

Categories: Passages.

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