Retiring Rep. Mike Ross (D) announced Friday that he is donating his papers to Ouachita Baptist University, becoming the fourth major Arkansas public figure to leave such a legacy with the Arkadelphia school.
According to an OBU press release, Ross will donate more than 200 boxes of materials, about 16,000 digital photos and an estimated 300 gigabytes of data.
The papers will be archived as part of the Riley-Hickingbotham Library Special Collections, which also contain the papers of Gov. Mike Huckabee (R), Rep. Jay Dickey (R) and Sen. John McClellan (D). The donation will be processed and made available to researchers.
OBU is a private liberal arts university that is affiliated with the Southern Baptist Convention and currently enrolls 1,532 students.
Ross, a Blue Dog Democrat, has served in the U.S. Congress since 2001 and will retire in early January 2013 after serving six terms. Before joining Congress, Ross served in the Arkansas State Senate from 1991-2000.
He was also a staff member for Lt. Gov. Winston Bryant (D) prior to entering elected office and he was a staffer on former Gov. Bill Clinton’s campaigns.
Ross and his wife, Holly, live in Prescott and have two children.
He will be joining Little Rock-based Southwest Power Pool as Senior Vice-president of Government Affairs and Public Relations in January. Ross had considered running for Arkansas Governor in 2014 before ruling out a bid last summer.