Liston came to UT in 1970 as the assistant vice chancellor for academic affairs and a professor of mechanical engineering. He went on to be named associate vice chancellor before retiring in 1990.
Liston attended Knoxville College before earning his bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from Howard University. He received his master’s from George Washington University. While carrying a full teaching load at North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University in 1953, he was one of two African Americans who enrolled in graduate study at North Carolina State University.
Each year, UT’s Commission for Blacks presents the Hardy Liston Jr. Symbol of Hope Award to faculty, staff, or alumni who have made outstanding, proactive contributions to the educational community and have promoted cultural diversity at the university.
Funeral services are being held at Highland South Funeral Home in Knoxville. Visitation will begin at 1:00 p.m. Saturday, July 14, with the service following at 2:00 p.m.
Liston’s grandson, Steven McKinnon, graduated from UT in 2003 with a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering.