Dr. Joe E. Walthall (’62) has been dedicated to University of Central Arkansas students and alumni for decades. “I’ve stayed active with the university for so long that it’s become a big part of my life and always will be,” Walthall said. Walthall taught in UCA’s Department of Early Childhood and Special Education for 30 years.
During that time, he earned a doctorate in special education and co-authored two textbooks. “Habilitation of the Mentally Retarded Individual” was co-authored and published with Dr. Harold Love in 1974. Three years later, the authors published another textbook, “A Handbook of Medical, Educational, and Psychological
Information for Teachers of Physically Handicapped Children.”
After he retired in 1999, he served on the Alumni Association Board of Directors
from 2002 to 2008. He was president of the association board from 2003 to
2005.During his time as president, Walthall helped build up the Alumni Association by bridging relationships between students and alumni.
Walthall helped spread a positive message about the university and encouraged alumni to stay in touch with the school to support incoming students. Walthall served on several alumni association committees and helped secure the location and construction for the Crafton Alumni Pavilion.
In 2012, the Dr. Joe and Charlene Walthall Scholarship Fund became fully endowed at UCA. The scholarship fund is for students pursuing a degree in early childhood education or special education.
Walthall and his wife, Charlene who is a UCA alumna, remain active in the association and university. The couple are sponsoring members of the Reynolds Performance Hall, UCA Purple Circle members and “general fans of the university,” Walthall said. They visit the campus once or twice a week.
The Walthalls have been married for more than 50 years. They have one son, Brooks Walthall, and two grandchildren, Audrey and Brooklyn.