(CHICAGO, IL) – The HBCU Campaign Fund (HCF) has announced its inaugural Emerging Higher Ed Professionals Award recognition that identifies a generation of higher education professionals who demonstrate leadership and a drive to grow professionally. The individuals must serve a historically black college and university (HBCU) or Minority-Serving Institutions (MSI).

The recognition honors professionals who are inspiring others by demonstrating a commitment to the value, mission, and vision of the student affairs space, prioritizing a steadfast commitment to student success through their work, and positively impacting, engaging, and supporting their division and the campus community.

“Each of the recipients has had an impressive career and a wealth of experience as a higher education professional. They also continue to make an impact on the important mission and have met the characteristics of what defines an emerging professional,” said Demetrius Johnson Jr., president and CEO, Founder at HBCU Campaign Fund. “I am extremely proud of their continued work and commitment of support for students on a daily basis, to the higher education space, and in the HBCU community. It is an honor to recognize their work and observe their progressive growth throughout their careers.”

Recipients will be granted the opportunity to participate in year-long professional development activities, including mentoring, continuing education opportunities, leadership skills, development, and networking with other senior leaders. Senior leaders will be identified from honorees who are president and chancellor recipients of the Ten Most Dominant HBCU Leaders Award by HCF.

Support is appreciated to assist with professional development activities for the recipients; click here to make a financial gift to the organization.

Click here to view the inaugural recipients of the 2021 Emerging Higher Ed Professional Award.


About the HBCU Campaign Fund
The HBCU Campaign Fund (HCF) was founded in 2012 and is a non-profit educational organization that remains a strong advocate for students and higher education. The mission of HCF is to support the significance and raise funds for scholarships, programs, and private and public HBCUs and MSIs. For more information, visit www.hbcucampaignfund.org.

Wednesday, the U.S. Senate introduced H.R. 748 or Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act ensuring just over $1 billion of dedicated funding for institutions like Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), Tribal Colleges and Universities (TCUs), and other Minority-Serving Institutions (MSIs) in response to the effects of the Coronavirus pandemic on operations. The United Negro College Fund (UNCF) took a leadership role calling on Congress to respond to the needs of HBCUs, which serve a disproportionately high percentage of low-income and first-generation college students. The disruption of classroom-based education to transition to distance learning and even assisting some students with travel back home has put a tremendous unforeseen financial strain on institutions that have historically been underfunded.

“I want to thank the congressional leadership for responding to our call and the needs of HBCUs, and indeed the rest of the higher education community,” said Dr. Michael L. Lomax, UNCF President and CEO. “I call on the House and Senate to swiftly pass this legislation. Also, let me be clear: the COVID-19 pandemic is hitting HBCUs hard. All emergencies that hit the higher education system seem to hit HBCUs harder because we serve mostly Pell Grant eligible students. However, thankfully, this time Congress remembered us, our institutions and our students. Now, we will have the resources to ensure our colleges can make the transition to distance learning platforms that are necessary to continue educating our students.”

Thurgood Marshall College Fund (TMCF), who also played an crucial role in advocating for the COVID-19 relief for HBCUs, applaud Congress and Senate for allocating a plan to necessary fund HBCUs during this critical time.

“The deal developed by the Senate is another powerful example of the Congress’ recognition of the importance of and need to deliver for HBCUs, PBIs and their students,” said Harry L. Williams, TMCF President and CEO. “The road to full financial recovery from this crisis will be a long one for our schools, but the collective engagement and tireless bipartisan advocacy of our community has helped to secure the much needed resources our schools require to both navigate this crisis and continue to pursue their respective missions.”

In addition to the supplemental aid, the CARES Act also authorizes the Department of Education to loosen the restrictions on currently appropriated Title III funds. This additional flexibility will allow schools to put previously restricted funds directly to use in addressing new challenges that our school and their students face during the ongoing health emergency.

Senate Letter Led by Sen. Booker and Sen. Jones on Need for HBCU and MSI Funding

Senate Letter Led by Sen. Scott on Need for HBCU Funding

HBCU, TCU, and MSI Community Letter Advocating for Stimulus Funding


About UNCF

UNCF (United Negro College Fund) is the nation’s largest and most effective minority education organization. To serve youth, the community and the nation, UNCF supports students’ education and development through scholarships and other programs, strengthens its 37 member colleges and universities, and advocates for the importance of minority education and college readiness. UNCF institutions and other historically black colleges and universities are highly effective, awarding nearly 20 percent of African American baccalaureate degrees. Today, UNCF supports more than 60,000 students at more than 1,100 colleges and universities across the country. It’s logo features the UNCF torch of leadership in education and its widely recognized motto, “A mind is a terrible thing to waste”®. Learn more at UNCF.org, or for continuous updates and news, follow UNCF on Twitter at @UNCF.

About TMCF

Established in 1987, the Thurgood Marshall College Fund (TMCF) is the nation’s largest organization exclusively representing the Black College Community. TMCF member-schools include the publicly-supported Historically Black Colleges and Universities and Predominately Black Institutions, enrolling nearly 80% of all students attending black colleges and universities. Though scholarships, capacity building and research initiatives, innovative programs and strategic partnerships, TMCF is a vital resource in the K-12 and higher education space. The organization is also the source of top employers seeking top talent for competitive internships and good jobs. For more information about TMCF, visit www.tmcf.org.


“As we look ahead into the next century, leaders will be those who empower others.” – Bill Gates.

The dynamics of higher education in America today are driving the demand for a new set of skills and capabilities for tomorrow’s leaders. Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) and Minority Serving Institutions (MSIs) provide quality education to low-income, first-generation, and academically underprepared students. Those institutions of such also serve a diverse population while maintaining the role as the backbone of educational institutions for more than 140-year history.

As President and CEO, Founder at the HBCU Campaign Fund, a non-profit that advocates for HBCUs and MSIs, leadership plays a substantial role in the management of the day-to-day operations of an institution. This third select group of individuals has proven their responsibilities for shaking policies, changing perspectives and making decisions that affect millions of individuals in the higher education sector and the daily needs of an HBCU or Minority-Serving Institution.

Below, HCF has compiled a list of ten chancellors and presidents that currently serve an HBCU or MSI who is a dominant and influential leader that presently displays the following responsibilities in the progress of moving their institutions forward.

President Zaldwaynaka Scott

10. Zaldwaynaka Scott was unanimously voted by the Board of Trustees’ to serve as the 12th permanent president of Chicago State University and assumed the role on July 1, 2018. Under her leadership, CSU has a renewed focus on growing student enrollment, building the school’s regional and national reputation for scholarship and academic research, improving the resources and opportunities available to the student body, and increasing alumni and community engagement.

Prior to her current role, President Scott spent more than 16 years as an Assistant U.S. Attorney in the Northern District of Illinois where she served as Chief of the General Crimes Section. She also served as Illinois’ first Executive Inspector General for the Agencies of the Governor and Public Universities. President Scott has taught at some of the nation’s most competitive law schools, including Northwestern University School of Law, The University of Chicago Law School and John Marshall Law School. She also served on the Board of Visitors at Indiana University Maurer School of Law and was the Board’s elected Vice President of the Chicago State Board of Trustees from 2010-13.

President Scott’s peers rank her among the nation’s top lawyers, resulting in her inclusion in Chambers and Partners USA, U.S. News Best Lawyers, Women in Business Law Guide, The Best Lawyers in America, Lending Lawyers 2015, Top 10 Women in Criminal Defense and Illinois Super Lawyers.

President Scott holds a law degree from Indiana University Maurer School of Law and a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana.

Dr. Patricia G. Sims

9. Dr. Patricia G. Sims was named as the fourth president of J.F. Drake State Community and Technical College in Huntsville, Alabama, in December 2018 by the Alabama Community College System Board of Trustees. Under her leadership, Drake State is transitioning to become the premier training destination for businesses in greater Huntsville.

Dr. Sims has 25 years of experience in K-12 and higher education. Most recently, she served as dean for the College of Education at Athens State University after 12 years as an administrator for the Alabama Community College System. Before that, she was the director of student services management and dean of instructional and student services at Drake State for more than 12 years. She has also served as a teacher and principal in the Huntsville City Schools Systems.

Dr. Sims was featured in the May 2019 issue of Business Alabama Magazine, representing a diverse field of industry and education, recognizing her work as president.

Dr. Sims holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of West Alabama, a master’s degree in secondary education from Alabama A&M University, and a doctorate in educational leadership and organizational development from Peabody College at Vanderbilt University in Nashville.

Dr. Kevin W. Cosby

8. Dr. Kevin W. Cosby was named the 13th President of Simmons College of Kentucky (SCKY) in 2015. Two years later, the college returned to its original campus. In the 13 years of his tenure, he has led the institution in generosity and vision, as demonstrated by his refusal to accept a salary from the college. Under his visionary direction, SCKY was granted accreditation by the Association of Biblical Higher Education (ABHE) in February 2014, expanded its campus and added three new degree programs, and was officially designated as the nation’s 107th Historically Black College and University (HBCU) in April 2015. Prior to Simmons College, Dr. Cosby has held administrative and teaching assignments at Kentucky State University, the University of Louisville, The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary and United Theological Seminary. Additionally, his exceptional oratorical skills have garnered lecture engagements at universities and institutions all over the world, including Harvard University.

Since 1979, Dr. Kevin Cosby has served as Senior Pastor of St. Stephen Church in Louisville, Kentucky. Due greatly to his practical and dynamic Bible teachings, the congregation has grown from 500 to approximately 14,000 members, and has been recognized by Outreach magazine as one of the 100 largest churches in America (2010) and Emerge magazine as one of the six “super churches” in the South.

Dr. Cosby has authored five highly-acclaimed books: Get off Your But!: Messages, Musings & Ministries to Empower the African-American Church; As They Want; Treasure Worth Seeking; Who’s Your Daddy?: Life Lessons from the Prodigal Son and Loyal to the Royal. He has been a contributing writer to a number of books, journals, and periodicals.

Dr. Cosby earned a bachelor’s degree from Eastern Kentucky University in Richmond, a master of divinity degree from The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, and a doctor of ministry degree from United Theological Seminary in Dayton, Ohio. He has been awarded honorary doctorates from Eastern Kentucky University, Bellarmine University, and Campbellsville University.

Dr. Karrie G. Dixon

7. Dr. Karrie G. Dixon was named the 12th Chief Executive Officer and 7th Chancellor of Elizabeth City State University in December 2018. Prior to her appointment as interim chancellor, Dr. Dixon served as co-lead on the ECSU New Directions Phase 2 Operational Team since early 2017.

Dr. Dixon has served as a senior administrator at the University of North Carolina System since 2008. In 2014, she was promoted to Vice President for Academic and Student Affairs. During her tenure, she was responsible for providing University-wide guidance for policy that shapes the work and practice within academic and student affairs divisions. For nearly ten years, she has provided the UNC System office with her expertise in academic policy while leading various student success initiatives and managing processes to increase student access, enrollment, retention, and graduation rates. She has also served as the Chief Student Affairs Officer for the UNC System, working closely with the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs and other University leaders on efforts regarding community college transfers, enrollment, and minimum admissions requirements, campus safety, and military student success.

Setting an institution-wide expectation for accountability, commitment, and excellence at ECSU from the beginning of her tenure, Dr. Dixon ensures that faculty, staff, alumni, internal and external stakeholders, and other community members know how valuable they are to the success of the university and its students. She was recently featured as one of the “Young HBCU Leaders Look to Carry the Torch” by Diverse Issues in Higher Education.

Dr. Dixon holds a bachelor’s degree in Communications and Public Relations from NC State University, a master’s degree in Speech Communications and Rhetoric from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, and a doctorate of education for NC State.

Dr. W. Franklin Evans

6. Dr. W. Franklin Evans is the 9th President of Voorhees College, has been in the position since 2016. Prior to being named the President of VC, he served as the Interim President of South Carolina State University in Orangeburg, SC, where he also served as the provost and chief academic officer. Evans is well-versed in many areas; these include leadership and supervision in all academic programs and curriculum development, faculty recruitment, enrollment management, strategic planning, and the accreditation process. During his leadership, the institution has launched its first fully online degree program, unveiled a new surface at its track and field complex, and ended its fiscal year raising $1,150,850.35.

Several years ago, Dr. Evans served as the Vice President for Academic Affairs at VUU and was instrumental in leading the university through a successful reaffirmation of accreditation. He also held academic leadership roles at Elizabeth City State University, J.F. Drake State Community and Technical College, Alabama A&M University, and Tennessee State University.

Dr. Evans earned a doctoral degree in higher education administration from Georgia State University. He earned a degree in journalism, middle childhood education, curriculum and instruction, as well as administration and supervision from Georgia State University. He earned a bachelor’s degree in entomology from the University of Georgia in 1984.

Dr. Paul A. Jones

5. Dr. Paul A. Jones was appointed as the 10th president of Fort Valley State University in December 2015. Under his leadership, overall enrollment has grown by 0.9%. Before joining FVSU, he served two years as interim president at Darton State College in Albany, Georgia.

Prior to his interim presidential appointment, he served in numerous senior leadership roles at Georgia College & State University, including senior vice president for finance and administration, vice president and chief of staff, vice president for institutional research and enrollment management, and several interim roles including interim vice president of academic affairs and president. Dr. Jones was also a Professor of Educational Administration at Georgia College.

Dr. Jones earned his bachelor’s and master’s degree at Utah State University, and also holds a doctor of philosophy degree in education and human resource studies from Colorado State University.

Dr. Elwood L. Robinson

4. Dr. Elwood L. Robinson was named Chancellor of Winston-Salem State University in, September 2014, by the Board of Governors of the 17-campus University of North Carolina, and assumed his duties in January 2015. Dr. Robinson was inducted as a member of the National Black College Alumni Hall of Fame on September 27, 2019.

In 2016, the university rolled out a five-year strategic plan that focuses on strengthening liberal education, enhancing academic excellence, and building a commitment to social justice through community engagement. Under his leadership, the university has made great strides in integrating what students learn in the classroom into every element of campus life. Additionally, WSSU maintains the highest six-year graduation rate of any of the UNC System’s minority serving institutions and is ranked as Money Magazine’s no. 1 public HBCU for 2019-20.

Prior to his appointment, Dr. Robinson served as Provost and Vice-President of Cambridge College. As a Cambridge College’s chief academic officer, Robinson has advised the president on matters of educational policy and the development of teaching and academic programs. Before, he was named Director of the Minority Access to Research Careers (MARC) Program, which provides research-training opportunities for students and faculty from minority groups underrepresented in the biomedical sciences.

From 1993-1996, Dr. Robinson also served as chair of NCCU’s Psychology Department. During his three-year term, he instituted a new clinical master’s program, developed a faculty development program, increased external funding, and improved graduation rates by 25 percent. In 2006, he was named founding Dean of the NCCU College of Behavioral and Social Sciences, where he oversaw nine departments, five centers and over 200 faculty and staff.

Dr. Robinson earned his bachelor’s degree in psychology from North Carolina Central University; a master’s degree in psychology from Fisk University. He earned a doctorate in clinical psychology from Pennsylvania State University. He later completed his clinical training as a research associate at Duke University Medical Center.

Dr. George T. French, Jr.

3. Dr. George T. French, Jr., was named the fifth president of Clark Atlanta University in September 2019. He served as president of Miles College, 2006-2019 before taking the lead at CAU. During his tenure, Miles College exceeded capital campaign goals – besting previous fundraising records, achieved an unprecedented financial composite score to position the school for growth, increased student access to educational funding, and more than doubled the size of the existing campus with key land acquisitions.

Prior to serving as the president of Miles College, Dr. French served in the roles of acting and interim president for the institution between October and December 2005. Before serving as interim president, Dr. French served as a member of the President’s Cabinet in the capacity of director of Institutional Planning and Development, and as such directed the offices of Alumni Affairs, Federal Contracts and Grants, Title III, Institutional Research and Effectiveness, Congressional Relations, and Public Relations.

Dr. French earned a bachelor degree in political science with an emphasis in policy analysis from the University of Louisville. He was competitively accepted into the University of Richmond Law School and completed two years of studies before being recruited by Miles College to serve as the Director of Development. He completed his final year of law school at Miles Law School, earning a Juris Doctorate. Dr. French received his Ph.D. in higher education from Jackson State University.

In 2015, Dr. French co-founded Higher Education Leader Foundation to help prepare highly-skilled talent for positions of leadership at historically black colleges and universities.

Dr. Cynthia Warrick

2. Dr. Cynthia Warrick was named the 7th president of Stillman College in July 2017, prior to her appointment she served as interim president. Dr. Warrick raised roughly $2 million through alumni outreach to cover debt service and summer operating expenses as well as boost recruiting efforts.

A pharmacist and health services researcher, Dr. Warrick has 20 years of Higher Education experience as faculty and administrator. She previously served as an Assistant Professor in the Division of Management, Policy and Community Health at the University of Texas School of Public Health, Center of Health, Promotion and Prevention Research. Dr. Warrick then served as an Associate Professor and Director of Environmental and Occupational Health at Florida A&M University before she served at Elizabeth City State University as a Tenured Full Professor of Pharmacy, Dean, and Chief Research Officer.

In 2012, Dr. Warrick was selected as Interim President at South Carolina State University. In 2014, she was appointed as Interim President of Grambling State University, where she brought stability to the institution in its crisis. In 2017, Dr. Warrick was appointed as Interim President of Stillman College. Prior to, she was a Senior Fellow at Thurgood Marshall College Fund (TMCF) and also served as President of the Society for Diversity in the Biomedical Sciences, based in Houston, Texas.

Dr. Warrick earned her bachelor’s degree in Pharmacy from Howard University; and completed the masters of science in public policy from the George Institute of Technology, and the doctorate in environmental science & public policy from George Mason University.

Dr. Warrick is focused on connecting students and the college to opportunities that advance academic excellence, degree completion, admissions into graduate and professional schools, and fruitful careers.

Dr. Billy C. Hawkins

1. Dr. Billy C. Hawkins has served as president of Talladega College since January 1, 2008. During his tenure, he has stabilized finances, increased fundraising, expanded academic offerings, successfully guided the College in reaching record-breaking enrollment increases.

A 45,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art residence hall opened in January 2019. In 2020, two new facilities will open. On January 31, 2020, a ribbon-cutting will be held for the Dr. William R. Harvey Museum of Art, which will house six critically-acclaimed Hale Woodruff murals, including the renowned Amistad Murals. To construct the museum for Woodruff’s murals, which are valued at 50 million dollars, Dr. Hawkins secured Talladega’s largest-ever financial gift, a one-million-dollar donation from alumnus Dr. William R. Harvey. Dr. Hawkins also secured a 1.5 million dollar contribution from Alabama Kay Ivey and the State of Alabama.

Dr. Hawkins spearheaded a similar transformation at Texas College, where he also served as the 20th President. Prior to his arrival, the College had lost both its accreditation and its membership in the United Negro College Fund (UNCF). Prior to joining Texas College, Dr. Hawkins served as Provost, Vice President for Academic and Professor of Education at Mississippi Valley State University. He began his career as an educator in the Lansing Michigan Public Schools System. Dr. Hawkins also served as Vice President for Academic Affairs/Professor at Saint Paul’s College; Acting Dean, Associate Dean, and Assistant Dean/Professor in the College of Education at Ferris State University; and Director of Educational Opportunity Program, State University of New York at Morrisville College.

Dr. Hawkins earned a bachelor’s degree in Teacher Education from Ferris State University; a master’s degree in education administration from Central Michigan University; and a Ph.D. in education from Michigan State University. He completed post doctorate study at Harvard University.


CHICAGO, IL – The HBCU Campaign Fund (HCF) cordially invites Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) and Minority Serving Institutions (MSIs) to participate in part of its Supported Institution of the Month Initiative Program for the year 2020 and 2021.

The Supported Institution of the Month program is intended as a monthly awareness and another avenue of advertisement for HBCUs and MSIs, which targets the areas of academic excellence, fundraising, recruitment, and student success.

The program will annually select twelve (12) partner schools with support from HCF. The partner schools will be exposed to the organization’s audience and support system socially and publicly as well as given the opportunity to be advocated by taking over HCF’s social media handles (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, WordPress, and Website) for a month.

During the partner schools month, HCF will aim awareness towards student success, recruitment, and fundraising (if the school has chosen to agree to through its institutional advancement or foundation office).

The partner school will be assigned a partnership page on the organization’s website, dedicated to its designated month. The page will include academic and student success, student spotlights, alumni spotlights, the institution’s history, recruitment information, admissions link, and information provided for donating through its institutional advancement or foundation office. HCF will designate a hashtag for social media engagement.

TIMELINE – Partner schools will be selected in three parts:

  • Interest institutions must submit an application via the organization’s website at www.hbcucampaignfund.org/programs/supportedinstitutions. Deadline is no later than January 17, 2020.
  • January 2020: all submitted applications and proposals for the year 2020 will be reviewed. The partner schools advancing in the process will be notified.
  • January 2020: the organization will make an official announcement of the selected partner schools for the year 2020.
  • February-March 2020: all submitted applications and proposals for the year 2021 will be reviewed. The partner schools advancing in the process will be notified.
  • April 2020: the organization will make an official announcement of the selected partner schools for the year 2021.

Individuals may request the Supported Institution of the Month Initiative Program Handbook or electronic application by email to djohnsonjr@hbcucampaignfund.org. You may also direct any questions that rise to the following email as well.


About HBCU Campaign Fund

Founded in 2012, HCF is the vision and brainchild of founder Mr. Demetrius Johnson, Jr. In 2015, HCF incorporated its mission to supporting the significance and raising funds for scholarships and services at HBCUs and MSIs. HCF today remains as a strong advocate for students and higher education. For more information, visit www.hbcucampaignfund.org.