Kyle Longley signs a copy of his book, LBJ's 1968, for Friends of the LBJ Library member Patrice Schexnayder. June 14, 2018.

Historian Kyle Longley named Director, LBJ Presidential Library

Jul 18, 2018

Longley Assumes Duties on July 29, 2018

Kyle Longley

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(AUSTIN, TX) – On July 18, David S. Ferriero, Archivist of the United States, named Dr. Kyle Longley as the next Director of the LBJ Presidential Library in Austin, Texas, effective July 29, 2018. Longley will be the fifth director of the LBJ Library, which opened to the public in 1971.

As a historian with research focusing on U.S. foreign relations and modern American politics, Longley brings unique qualifications to the position as director of the Library. His most recent book, LBJ's 1968: Power, Politics, and the Presidency in America's Year of Upheaval, was published this year. He is also the author of In the Eagle's Shadow: The United States and Latin America; Senator Albert Gore, Sr.: Tennessee Maverick; and, The Morenci Marines: A Tale of Small Town America.

In making the announcement, Ferriero said, "Dr. Longley's extensive historical knowledge, combined with his teaching, research, and leadership experience, will be of great value to the National Archives, the Johnson Library, and its constituents. We welcome him and look forward to working with him on future projects and programs."

Larry Temple, Chairman of the LBJ Foundation, added, "Kyle Longley is no stranger to the LBJ Library since he has pursued significant research there, including for his widely acclaimed recent book LBJ's 1968. As a highly respected historian with a national reputation, Kyle is a worthy successor to the superb former LBJ Library Directors Harry Middleton, Betty Sue Flowers, and Mark Updegrove. We are grateful to Archivist of the United States David Ferriero for his wise selection of Kyle Longley."

Recently, Longley joined Bill Moyers, Tom Johnson, and Lynda Johnson Robb in a panel discussion about the turbulent year 1968. That conversation was moderated by Mark K. Updegrove, previous director of the LBJ Library who currently serves as President and CEO of the LBJ Foundation. "Well before Kyle threw his hat in the ring as a candidate for the directorship of the LBJ Library, we knew him as an esteemed scholar and author who has written thoughtfully and prolifically on LBJ and his times," said Updegrove. "He is the right person to bring the LBJ Library into a new era. We look forward to working with him toward the Library’s continued excellence."

Previous directors of the LBJ Library have been Chester Newland (1968-1970), Harry Middleton (1970-2002), Betty Sue Flowers (2002-2009), and Mark K. Updegrove (2009 -2017).

Most recently, Longley was the Snell Family Dean's Distinguished Professor of History and Political Science at Arizona State University in Tempe, Arizona. Longley joined the ASU faculty in 1995 after serving as a visiting professor at The Citadel. He served in many administrative positions at Arizona State University, including director of graduate studies for the history department, faculty head, associate director of SHPRS, and as a Dean's Faculty Fellow.

For his efforts in the classroom, Longley has received several awards including the Zebulon Pearce Teaching Award for Outstanding Teacher in the Humanities, the Associated Students of Arizona State University Centennial Professor, ASU Habitat for Humanity, "Making the World a Cooler Place to Live" prize for teaching, and the Kappa Alpha Fraternity National Teacher of the Year award.

Longley has been active at the national level in academic organizations including the American Historical Association (AHA), Organization of American Historians, Society of Historians of American Foreign Relations, and the Pacific Coast Branch of the AHA, having served as president of the latter.

Longley received a bachelor's degree in history and mathematics from Angelo State University, a master's degree in history and comparative literature from Texas Tech University, and a doctorate in history from the University of Kentucky.

LBJ Presidential Library
At the LBJ Presidential Library, visitors have an opportunity to learn about America's 36th President, Lyndon Johnson, one of the most complex and fascinating leaders. Through innovative, state-of-the-art exhibits, the political and personal lives of Lyndon and Lady Bird Johnson come alive. This contemporary experience allows visitors to understand the decisions President Johnson faced and experience his passion for critical issues such as education, civil rights, the environment, healthcare, and the arts. All aspects of Johnson’s presidency are explored, including the Vietnam War. Visitors can pick up a telephone to hear audio recordings of Johnson as he conducts business—a rare behind-the-scenes glimpse inside the White House, found only at the LBJ Library.
Located on The University of Texas campus in Austin, Texas, the LBJ Library is one of fourteen presidential libraries in the United States.

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