Dr. Rick Harper, Ph.D. / Associate Vice President
University Of West Florida Center for Research and Economic Opportunity
Rick Harper’s career as an economist began in 1979 at the Research Triangle Institute in North Carolina. He earned his Ph.D. in Economics from Duke University in 1989 and joined the UWF faculty that same year.
Rick directs UWF’s Center for Research and Economic Opportunity (CREO), which oversees the UWF Office of Research and Sponsored Programs, the Florida Small Business Development Center Network, the UWF Office of Economic Development and Engagement, and the Haas Center for Business Research and Economic Development. During 2013 and 2014, he was on loan to the Florida Senate where he served as Senior Policy Advisor on Economic Affairs under President Don Gaetz. In 2015 he was appointed as UWF’s Associate Vice President for Research and Economic Opportunity, and he also serves as Senior Research Fellow of the Studer Community Institute.