By Lisa Stone
University of Mississippi Communications
David Whitcomb, an attorney with more than 25 years of experience across the corporate, governmental and higher education sectors, has been appointed as chief legal officer and general counsel at the University of Mississippi.
Whitcomb comes to Ole Miss from the University of Tennessee System, where he served as deputy general counsel. In his new role, Whitcomb will report to Chancellor Glenn Boyce and provide advice and counsel on a wide array of matters including governance, research, athletics, student affairs and finance.
A member of the chancellor’s senior leadership team, Whitcomb also will coordinate with the University of Mississippi Medical Center on legal matters, working closely with its general counsel.
“I am honored and excited to join Ole Miss,” Whitcomb said. “I look forward to contributing to the work of this great university, which is such a valuable asset to the state of Mississippi.”
Whitcomb has a long and distinguished background in legal practice. He joined the University of Tennessee System in 2018, overseeing the university’s litigation across all campuses, as well as nonlitigation controversies involving students, faculty, employees and the general public.
He has experience with constitutional and civil rights matters and the anti-discrimination statutes, including Title IX, Title VII and the Americans with Disabilities Act. Additionally, he has handled matters involving reasonable accommodations and program accessibility; the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act, known as FERPA; free speech; and public records.
Previously, Whitcomb was a partner with BakerHostetler in Columbus, Ohio, a national law firm ranked by The American Lawyer as one of the top 100 in the country. There, he was a litigator and employment lawyer and advised clients on public sector issues. He also worked as a trial attorney for the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and served as a law clerk for two U.S District Court judges.
“I’m pleased to welcome such a dynamic, accomplished leader with vast experience to Ole Miss and to our leadership team,” Boyce said. “David is a highly respected attorney with exceptional legal experience in higher education, corporate, government and private practice.
“His extensive expertise and knowledge will be a tremendous asset in addressing the university’s complex legal needs.”
Whitcomb is a graduate of the University of Michigan Law School. He also holds a bachelor’s degree in political science from Ohio State University.
His wife, Brooks, is a sixth-grade math teacher, and his daughter, Margaux, is a high school sophomore. As a family, they enjoy visiting national parks, hiking and boating. He also plays soccer and enjoys reading nonfiction.
Whitcomb and his family are looking forward to joining the Ole Miss community.
“It is such a wonderful place, and everyone has been so kind and welcoming to me and my family,” Whitcomb said. “I am thankful for the trust that Chancellor Boyce and the search committee have placed in me.”
Whitcomb will start with the university on August 9.