MISSISSIPPI – In the early morning hours on Tuesday, February 1, 2022, five of Mississippi’s Historically Black Colleges and Universities received an unsubstantiated bomb threat to our campuses. Once the threat was received, we each worked with our Department of Public Safety and local emergency response personnel to thoroughly investigate and determine the extent of the threat. Subsequently law enforcement officials cleared all campuses. The fact that these threats came on the first day of Black History Month proves these actions were intentional attempts to disrupt, invoke fear and discourage our faculty, staff, scholars, and the campus communities. Despite these threats, Mississippi’s Historically Black Colleges and Universities – WE STAND UNITED!
Alcorn State University, Jackson State University, Mississippi Valley State University, Rust College, Tougaloo College, Coahoma Community College, and Hinds Community College, Utica have long served our state and nation as educational beacons and have been a critical engine of life-changing opportunities for thousands of graduates and current students. We remain committed to ensuring each institution’s continued growth and success while guarding the safety of our greatest assets – our students.
Though we are forced to navigate some of the most politically and socially polarizing times in this nation’s history, collectively, we will remain strong and resilient and not be intimidated or fearful. As Mississippi’s HBCU community, we will continue our mission to inspire and empower the next generation of change agents who will go on to boldly confront hatred and injustice as it exists in all its forms.
The threats we received, along with several other HBCUs across the country, Illustrate the need for us to support one other. We are stronger together. As HBCUs, our histories speak of trials and triumphs, contest and courage, limitations and longevity. We are here on purpose, and we must be diligent in preserving and promoting our past, present, and future to further prove our importance and relevance to this nation’s economy and landscape.
Together we will forge ahead with a common purpose to advance academic excellence, promote good moral character, maintain professional integrity, and stand on the truth, and our institutions will continue to persevere as many of us have done for more than 100 years. We ask that the alumni and friend/supporters of our institutions join us as we stand against hatred, bigotry, and intolerance. This is our voice. This is our fight. These are our HBCUs.
Felecia M. Nave, Ph.D., President – Alcorn State University
Thomas K. Hudson, J.D., President – Jackson State University
Jerryl Briggs, Ed.D., President – Mississippi Valley State University
Ivy R. Taylor, Ed.D., President – Rust College
Carmen J. Walters, Ph.D., President – Tougaloo College
Valmadge T. Towner, Ph.D., President – Coahoma Community College
Stephen Vacik, Ed.D., President – Hinds Community College, Utica
CHICAGO, IL – The HBCU Campaign Fund (HCF) has released its annual The Ten Most Dominant HBCU Leaders Award & Class. The Ten Most Dominant HBCU Leaders Award & Class is a national recognition ranking that was created by the HBCU Campaign Fund, a non-profit that advocates for historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) and Minority-Serving Institutions (MSIs).
The dynamics of higher education in America today are driving the demand for a new set of skills and capabilities for tomorrow leaders. Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) and Minority-Serving Institutions (MSIs) provide a high-quality education to low-income, first-generation, and academically underprepared students. Also, these institutions as such serve a diverse population while maintaining the role as the backbone of higher education and well underrepresented for more than a 150-year history.
According to HCF’s Founder, President & CEO, Demetrius Johnson Jr., the fifth selected group of leaders have “proven their responsibilities for shaping policies, changing perspectives, and making decisions that affect millions of individuals in the higher education space, and the daily needs of what an HBCU or Minority-Serving Institutions contributes.”
The organization has identified ten chancellors and presidents currently serving an HBCU or MSI, who exemplify a prominent and influential role in leadership and model the characteristics of the following responsibilities in the progression of effectively moving an institution forward.
In addition, the organization announced the inaugural Dr. Lawrence A. Davis, Jr. Trailblazers of Higher Education Awardamong The Ten Most Dominant HBCU Leaders. A new honor that will recognize a current or retiring/retired president or chancellor that serve(s) a HBCU or MSI and upholds decade-long value and contributions to the field of higher education.
Receiving the inaugural award are retiring presidents Dr. Andrew Hugine, Jr., of Alabama A&M University, and Dr. William R. Harvey of Hampton University. Dr. Lawrence A. Davis, Jr. is also among Hugine and Harvey to receive the honor.
“This is a delightful time for us at HCF as we approach revealing the fifth class of honorees for the annual award recognition. As a student under Dr. Davis’ leadership, I appreciate all of his contributions to our beloved Dear Mother and am honored to acknowledge him in such a prestigious way,”said HC President & CEO, Demetrius Johnson Jr. “I commend Dr. Hugine and Dr. Harvey on a magnificent job well done for the roles that they’ve played at their institutions, and this could not be more than special to salute them for their leadership. We congratulate them both on their retirements and send our very best wishes.”
Click here to view the Ten Most Dominant HBCU Leaders of 2022 award recipients and fifth-class honorees.
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 for private and public HBCUs and MSIs. For more information, visit www.hbcucampaignfund.org.
(CHICAGO, IL) – The HBCU Campaign Fund (HCF) has released its annual The Ten Most Dominant HBCU Leaders Award recipients & fourth class. The Ten Most Dominant HBCU leaders Award & Class is a national recognition ranking that was created by the HBCU Campaign Fund, a non-profit that advocates for historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) and Minority-Serving Institutions (MSIs).
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 a high-quality education to low-income, first-generation, and academically underprepared students. Also, these institutions as such serves a diverse population while maintaining the role as the backbone of higher education and well underrepresented for more than a 140-year history.
According to HCF’s President & CEO, Founder Demetrius Johnson Jr., the fourth selected group of leaders have “proven their responsibilities for shaping policies, changing perspectives, and making decisions that affect millions of peoples lives in the higher education space, and the daily needs of what an HBCU or Minority-Serving Institutions contributes.”
The organization has compiled a list of ten chancellors and presidents that currently serve an HBCU or MSI who plays a prominent and influential role in leadership and displays the characteristics of the following responsibilities in the progression of effectively moving an institution forward.
Click here to see the complete listing of award recipients and fourth-class inductees.
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 for private and public HBCUs and MSIs. For more information, visit www.hbcucampaignfund.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.
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.
9. Dr. Patricia G. Simswas 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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
AUGUSTA, GA – Paine College Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs, Dr. Cheryl Evans Jones, has been named Acting President of Paine College effective July 1, 2019. The Board of Trustees voted unanimously to appoint Dr. Jones to succeed Dr. Jerry L. Hardee who retired citing recent bouts with health issues. Dr. Hardee will remain available to render support throughout the transition.
“We are confident that Dr. Jones will provide strong and effective leadership for Paine College,” said Barbara E. Bouknight, Trustee Chair. “Dr. Jones’ ties to Paine faculty and to the community, coupled with her academic experience and ability to connect with students make her the ideal person to lead the College at this time. She has been an integral part of the campus family for 26 years and during that time her peers, students and faculty recognized her for dedication and educational talent and leadership. We look forward to working with Dr. Jones who will further the College’s mission, growth and progress.”
Dr. Jones joined the faculty in 1993 and quickly advanced from Assistant Professor of Psychology to Associate Professor and later earned tenure. For more than two decades, Dr. Jones has played a vital role in the College’s accreditation efforts. She has served as the Accreditation Liaison to the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC), as well as Director of the Institutional Self-Study for Transitional Association of Christian Colleges and Schools (TRACS). She was appointed Paine College Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs more than four years ago, in March 2015 after filling that role in an acting capacity since September of the previous year. Dr. Jones has spent her career shaping students’ minds and preparing them for success in the marketplace and in life. At the same time, she has been a vital part of the Paine College faculty and family, helping to shape and prepare Paine to continue its mission of educating tomorrow’s leaders.
About Paine College
Paine College is a private institution steeped in the tenets of Methodism that provides a liberal arts education of the highest quality. The College emphasizes academic excellence, ethical and spiritual values, social responsibility, and personal development to prepare spiritually-centered men and women for positions of leadership and service. For more information, visit www.paine.edu.
JACKSON, MS – The Board of Trustees of Tougaloo College is pleased to announce the selection of Dr. Carmen J. Walters as the 14th President of the historic institution.
As the college celebrates its Sesquicentennial Anniversary and embraces what lies ahead in the new era of higher education, Dr. Walters brings a depth of executive-level leadership and knowledge in such vital areas as strategic planning in enrollment facilities management, grant and budget management, workforce development, community and diversity relations and athletics management.
According to a press release by the University, Dr. Walters succeeds Dr. Beverly Wade Hogan, who is retiring June 30. Dr. Hogan has served as Tougaloo’s president since May 2002. She is the first woman and 13th president to lead Tougaloo.
“This position is a dream come true for me,” said Dr. Walters. “Tougaloo has such a rich and powerful history. You can feel it when you arrive on the campus and walk these hallowed grounds. It’s a great challenge and opportunity for me to help preserve that wonderful history but also carry Tougaloo forward so that it’s here another 150 years.”
Walters has served more than 24 years in Community College education. She spent the past six years at Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College in Perkinston, where she is Executive Vice President for Enrollment Management, Student Success and Institutional Relations. Prior to that she worked 18 years at Delgado Community College in New Orleans.
Dr. Hogan said: “I am tremendously excited about the selection of Dr. Walters, and it will be my privilege to pass the baton of leadership to her. She brings a combined level of experiences, commitment and mature judgement that are useful in any leadership role. Her understanding and appreciation of the college’s history and mission, as well as her demonstrated commitment to faculty and student success, will be impactful in moving the college into its best years.”
Dr. Walters received her Bachelor of Science in accounting and business administration from Southern University in 1984, a Mater of Arts degree in post secondary counseling from Xavier College in New Orleans in 1990 and her Ph.D. in Community College leadership from Mississippi State University in 2009.
“A genuine leader is not a searcher for consensus but a molder of consensus.” – Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
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 provides a quality education to low-income, first-generation, and academically underprepared students. These institutions of such also serves a diverse population while playing the role as the backbone of education for more than 140 years.
As President and CEO of the HBCU Campaign Fund (HCF) organization, a supportive non-profit group for Historically Black Colleges and Universities, leadership plays a substantial role in the operation of an institution. This second select group of individuals is responsible for shaking policies, changing perspectives and making decisions that affect millions through their educational needs daily at an HBCU institution.
Below, HCF has compiled a list of ten chancellors and presidents of HBCU’s who are dominant influential leaders and currently displaying the following responsibilities in leadership in the progress of moving their institutions forward.
10. Dr. Christoper J. Hall – Interim President of Denmark Technical College – Denmark, SC
Dr. Christopher J. Hall currently serves as the Interim President of Denmark Technical College, located in Denmark, South Carolina. Most recently, he was the Dean of Business and Public Service at Central Carolina Technical College in Sumter, South Carolina. He served as the Academic Program Manager and Instructor for the Criminal Justice Technology Program for a little over thirteen years. In addition to his work at Central Carolina, he serves as a Reserve Deputy with Richland County Sheriff’s Department and is a Sergeant in the Provost Marhsal’s Command of the South Carolina State Guard. Prior to teaching for Central Carolina, Hall taught at Denmark Technical College and he previously served as a corrections officer and training resource officer for the South Carolina Department of Corrections.
Dr. Hall recently completed a Doctor of Management in Community College Policy and Administration Degree at University of Maryland University College. He holds a Master of Public Administration, with a concentration in Criminal Justice from Jacksonville State University, a Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice and a Graduate Certificate of Higher Education Administration from the University of South Carolina.
Dr. Hall was selected as the 2014 Governor’s Professor of the Year for Two-Year Colleges. A recipient of the 2013 E.C. “Red” Kneece Instructional Excellence Award presented by the Central Carolina Foundation and the 2004 Central Carolina’s Educator of the Year, Hall is a dynamic and outstanding master teacher who continually renews himself and his instruction, materials, and delivery methods to remain current and effective.
Dr. Hall is currently conducting additional research on persistence and retention at community colleges, improving student success, community college leadership and administration, and improving the quality of higher education
9. Dr. Aminta H. Breaux – President of Bowie State University – Bowie, MD
Dr. Aminta H. Breaux brings more than 30 years of diverse higher education leadership experience to her position as the 10th president of Bowie State University. Throughout her career, she has demonstrated a passion for ensuring student development and success. She is dedicated to building on the legacy and rich history of Maryland’s oldest historically black university.
Before joining Bowie State University in July 2017, Dr. Breaux served as vice president for advancement for Millersville University, where she oversaw fundraising, alumni engagement, event management, and external relations. Before that, she was vice president for student affairs at Millersville University, leading several student-centered areas, including athletics, counseling services, health services, the women’s wellness center, Greek life, campus recreation, university police, student programs, housing and residential programs, judicial affairs, and financial aid
Previously, she was dean of students at University of the Sciences in Philadelphia, known as the country’s first college of pharmacy. At Drexel University, she served as assistant provost, overseeing experiential and service-learning programs, and as director of co-operative education and career services. She got her start in higher education as a career counselor at the University of Pennsylvania.
Dr. Breaux holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Temple University, a master’s degree in psychological services in education from the University of Pennsylvania, and a doctorate in counseling psychology from Temple University. She is also a graduate of the Harvard Institute for Executive Management and the American Association for State Colleges and Universities Millennium Leadership Institute.
8. Dr. Laurence B. Alexander – Chancellor of the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff – Pine Bluff, AR
Dr. Laurance B. Alexander is the ninth Chancellor of the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff (UAPB). Before joining UAPB in 2013, he served as the Associate Dean of the University of Florida (UF) Graduate School, Director of the Office of Graduate Minority Programs, a Distinguished Teaching Scholar, and a Professor in the Department of Journalism.
Dr. Alexander has held several administrative positions throughout his career. he served as Chair of the UF Department of Journalism, Provost Administrative Fellow in the UF Office of Academic Affairs. He was a Fellow in the 2012-2013 Southeastern Conference Academic Consortium’s Academic Leadership Development Program (SECAC/ALDP).
A native of New Orleans, Alexander received a bachelor’s degree in Drama and Communications from University of New Orleans, master’s degree in Journalism and Communications from UF, Juris Doctor from Tulane University, and Ph.D. in Higher Education from Florida State University.
As a Professor, Alexander taught more than 10,000 students. He has received significant awards, honors and recognition for his research and undergraduate teaching. He was named the 12th UF Distinguished Alumni Professor, a UF Distinguished Teaching Scholar and member of the UF Academy of Distinguished Teaching Scholars, a UF Research Foundation Professor, and he received the Florida Blue Key Distinguished Faculty Award. Moreover, his national honors and awards include the Florida Education Fund President’s Award, the Freedom Forum Teacher of the Year Award, and the Baskett Mosse Award, given by the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communications and the accrediting council.
7. Dr. Lester A. McCorn – President of Clinton College – Rock Hill, SC
Named as the 13th President of Clinton College on August 15, 2018, Dr. Lester A. McCorn has been the acting president for the past year and has more than three decades of leadership experience. He joins Clinton College after serving as the senior pastor at Pennsylvania Avenue A.M.E. Zion Church in Baltimore, Maryland from 2008 to 2017.
For several years, Dr. Lester A. McCorn served as an adjunct professor/mentor of doctoral students at United Seminary. He is the author of “Standing on Holy Common Ground: An Africentric Ministry Approach to Prophetic Community Engagement.” He also served as Vice President of Urban Development of the Antioch School of Church Planting and Leadership Development.
Dr. McCorn attended Morehouse College, Yale Divinity School and Chicago Theological Seminary. He holds the Doctorate of Ministry (D.Min.) from United Theological Seminary. He is currently a candidate for the Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Ethical and Creative Leadership with a concentration in Martin Luther King Jr. Studies and Social Change, at Union Institute and University in Cincinnati, Ohio.
Dr. McCorn is the former Director of Young Adult Ministries for the A.M.E. Zion denomination. He served as the President of the Zion Development Corporation, Inc. and the Zion M.A.D.E. Institute. He is also a principal of Community Churches for Community Development, Incorporated, headquartered in Baltimore. Pastor McCorn is the spiritual father to over 30 sons and daughters in ministry, some of whom are active pastors.
Dr. McCorn has received many awards and honors. He was a fellow of the Rockefeller Foundation’s Next Generation Leadership Program (which included CNN host Van Jones and NAACP Legal Defense Fund President Sherrilyn Ifill) and Leadership Greater Chicago. He was served on the Boards of the United Way, Urban League and as chair of the Anti-Racism Task Force of the Illinois Conference of Churches. he is an inductee of the distinguished Martin Luther King Jr. Board of Preachers of Morehouse College. He is proud member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc., initiated at Morehouse College (Alpha Rho Chapter) in 1986.
6. Dr. William B. Bynum, Jr. – President of Jackson State University – Jackson, MS
Dr. William B. Bynum, Jr., a higher education professional with more than 27 years of experience, was unanimously selected to be the 11th president of Jackson State University by the Mississippi Institutions of Higher Learning Board on May 31, 2017. Before joining the Jackson State University family, Bynum served four years as president of Mississippi Valley State University.
Prior of his appointment at MVSU, Bynum served as the vice president for Enrollment Management and Student Services at Morehouse College from 2009-2013, where he was mentored by Morehouse’s 10th president Dr. Robert Michael Franklin. While serving at Morehouse, Bynum significantly enhanced student-administration relations and improved the efficiency and effectiveness of student services. He also started, envisioned and let the initiative which established the Parents Council and implemented the nationally acclaimed Morehouse “Appropriate Attire Policy.
Before joining the administrative leadership team at Morehouse, Bynum served as the vice president for Student Affairs and Enrollment Management from 2000 – 2009 at Lincoln University in Pennsylvania. During his nine years of service, he was successful in nearly doubling Lincoln’s enrollment and recruited the four largest new student classes in the University’s 150-year history. Before LU, Bynum served as the associate vice president and dean of students at Clark Atlanta University from 1993-2000, and he was the second person in the division that recruited the four largest classes in the then 125-year history of CAU.
In addition to his enrollment management and student affairs work, Bynum has lectured and/or taught as well. He served as Covington Distinguished Professor of Sociology at Davidson, and at Morehouse he was an adjunct professor in the leadership studies program and Department of Sociology. Bynum’s other professional experience includes research and teaching positions at Georgia Institute of Technology, Duke University and Durham and Edgecombe Community Colleges. He started his educational career as a teacher, football and wrestling coach in the Rocky Mount City School System 1984 to 1987 and the DeKalb County Georgia School System in 1987 to 1988
A native of Rocky Mount, North Carolina, Bynum earned his bachelor of arts degree in sociology from Davidson College while on a student-athlete scholarship. He was subsequently licensed and certified to teach social studies and math in North Carolina and Georgia. Bynum went on to earn his master’s and Ph.D. in sociology from Duke University while serving as a Duke Endowment Fellow. He was also a member of the inaugural class of the National Association for Equal Opportunity-Kellogg Leadership Fellows Program.
5. Dr. Roderick L. Smothers, Sr. – President of Philander Smith College – Little Rock, AR
Dr. Roderick L. Smothers, Sr. was named the 14th president of Philander Smith College on October 1, 2014 and officially began his tenure on January 5, 2015. A dynamic scholar, transformative leader and forward-thinking visionary, Smothers is committed to building upon the institution’s strong and historic legacy, while advancing its mission to new levels of excellence.
Previously, Dr. Smothers served as vice president for institutional advancement at two historically black universities: Huston-Tillotson University in Austin, Texas, and Langston University in Langston, Oklahoma, respectively, where he was responsible for university development and fundraising, sponsored programs, marketing and public relations, external affairs, community engagement and alumni affairs. As an accomplished fundraiser, he has worked extensively with individuals, non-profits organizations, corporations, and foundations along with federal, regional and state agencies, and holds a cumulative fundraising/grant writing record that exceeds $60 million.
As a higher education professional, he is also experienced in conducting scientific and applied research, facilitating date-driven, community-based interventions, and training educators aspiring to leadership roles in elementary and secondary school administration. His research agenda includes: the past, present and future of historically black colleges and universities; the transformation of toxic urban school districts, strengthening the secondary and post-secondary educational pipelines for African-American males, effective mentoring programs, the access dilemma in higher education for minority students, and the effectiveness of state merit-based tuition programs.
A native of Vidalia, Louisiana, Smothers earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology, a master’s degree in public administration (with a concentration in higher education administration), and a doctoral degree in educational leadership, research and counseling, all from LSU. He also holds a certification in fundraising management from The Fund Raising School at The Center on Philanthropy at Indiana University through the Thurgood Marshall College Fund Initiative. Additionally, he has served as a U.S. Air Force reservist with active-duty time spent during Desert Shield/Desert Storm.
Smothers has held membership in several professional organizations, including the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education (CASE), Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP), American Association of Governing Boards (AGB), Research Association for Minority Professor (RAMP) and the American Society for Public Administration (ASPA).
4. Richard J. Gallot, Jr. – President of Grambling State University – Grambling, LA
The University of Louisiana System (ULS) Boar of Supervisors announced in 2016 that the tenth President of Grambling State University will be Richard J. Gallot, Jr., former Louisiana state senator, and state representative.
From 2000 to 2012, Gallot held the District 11 seat in the Louisiana House of Representatives. He served three terms in the house before winning his first term in the senate in 2011. Gallot did not seek re-election in the October 24, 2015, election.
Gallot is a 1987 graduate of Grambling State University where he received a bachelor of arts in Arts and History. He earned his Juris Doctorate from Southern University in 1990.
Gallot is a member of the Gamma Psi chapter of Kappa Alpha Psi fraternity.
3. Dr. Harold L. Martin Sr. – Chancellor of North Carolina A&T State University – Greensboro , NC
Dr. Harold L. Martin Sr. was elected the 12th chancellor of North Carolina A&T State University on May 22, 2009, and formally begin his tenure on June 8, 2009. Dr. Martin brought more than 30 years of transformative leadership experience in higher education to the role. He is the first alumnus to serve as the university’s chief executive.
Under Dr. Martin’s leadership, NCAT has become one of the nation’s top producers of African-American graduates in engineering, mathematics, statistics, agriculture, journalism, visual and performing arts, marketing and physical sciences. In 2015, the university earned the Community Engagement Classification by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. During Martin’s tenure, it has also grown its statewide economic impact to more than $1 billion and its regional economic impact to more than $700 million.
Before his election as chancellor of A&T, Martin served as senior vice president for academic affairs for the UNC system. He also served as the 11th chief administrator and seventh chancellor of Winston-Salem State University and in a number of administrative posts at A&T including vice chancellor for the Division of Academic Affairs, dean of the College of Engineering and chairman of the Department of Electrical Engineering.
A proponent of community engagement, Martin lends himself to service on various boards including the American Council on Education, the Association of Public and Land-Grant Universities, Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Review Advisory Board, Research Triangle Institute, Piedmont Triad Regional Development Council, National Collegiate Athletic Association Limited-Resource Institutions Advisory Group.
The Winston-Salem, N.C., native received his B.S. and M.S. degrees in electrical engineering from A&T and a Ph.D. in electrical engineering form Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University.
2. Dr. Colette P. Burnette – President of Huston-Tillotson University – Austin, TX
Ranking as the first female president and CEO in the historic Huston-Tillotson University, Austin’s oldest institution of higher learning and only historically black college and university (HBCU). Dr. Colette Pierce Burnette has proven to be a successful leader. Dr. Burnetter has been named an Innovator by the New Leaders Council – Austin Chapter, an Austin Fab Five by the Seeding Foundation, and a Top 25 Woman in the nation in Higher Education by a leading higher education magazine, DIVERSE.
At Huston-Tillotson, she created a set of principles called IDEAL (Integrity, Diversity, Excellence, Accountability, Leadership) to guide all things and people of Huston-Tillotson, from operation to students to faculty and staff. Dr. Burnette inspires over 1100 students and 100 faculty and staff members.
Before becoming a university president, Dr. Burnette was a successful engineer with widely-known organizations. From being a computer analyst for The Washington Post to an operations support engineer for Proctor and Gamble, from Director of Information Systems at Neighborhood Reinvestment Corporation to Manager of Counseling and Project Management Services at the Washington State Department of Transportation, and ultimately, running her own computer consulting firm, it is no surprise that her alma mater, the Ohio State University named her Outstanding Engineering Alumnus.
For someone of Dr. Burnette’s caliber and with her breadth of knowledge, many boards want her membership. A few of her current local board memberships include the Mayor of Austin’s taskforce on Institutional Racism and Systemic Inequities, Girl Scouts of Central Texas, and Greater Austin Black and Austin Area Chamber of Commerce. Nationally, she serves on The Ohio State University’s College of Engineering Advisory Committee and the National Association of Schools and Colleges of the United Methodist Church Board.
Dr. Burnette is a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., Austin (TX) Chapter of The Links, Inc., the National Society of Black Engineers, and Texnikoi Engineering Honorary.
1.Dr. Michael J. Sorrell – President of Paul Quin College – Dallas, TX
Dr. Michael J. Sorrell is the longest-serving President in the 146-year history of Paul Quinn College. During his almost 12 years of leadership, Paul Quinn has become something unique – a small, private minority-serving institution that by focusing on the most persistent, prevalent, and pressing problems of society, is remaking higher education and becoming a movement.
Among Paul Quinn’s numerous accomplishments during President Sorrell’s tenure are the following: winning the HBCU of the Year, the HBCU Student Government Association of the Year, and the HBCU Business Program of the Year awards; achieving recognition as a member of the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll, creating the New Urban College Model; demolishing 15 abandoned campus buildings; partnering with PepsiCo to transform the football field into the WE over Me Farm; achieving full-accreditation from the Transnational Association of Christian Colleges and Schools (TRACS); creating the College’s first faculty-led study abroad program; and rewriting all institutional fundraising records.
Dr. Sorrell received his J.D. and M.A. in Public Policy from Duke University and his Ed.D. from the University of Pennsylvania (where his dissertation defense was awarded “with Distinction). While in law school, he was one of the founding members of the Journal of Gender Law & Policy and served as the Vice President of the Duke Bar Association. Michael was a recipient of a Sloan Foundation Graduate Fellowship, which funded his studies at both Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government (as a graduate fellow) and Duke University. He graduate from Oberlin College with a B.A. in Government.
Dr. Sorrell serves as a trustee or director for Duke University’s School of Law, the Graduate School of Education and the Center for Minority Serving Institutions at the University of Pennsylvania, Amegy Bank, Dallas Advisory Board of Teach for America, the Dallas Foundation, the Holdsworth Center for Educational Leadership, and EarthX.
Dr. Sorrell is a member of Sigma Pi Phi Fraternity and a life member of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc.
“Leadership should be born out of the understanding of the needs of those who would be affected by it.” – Marian Anderson.
As President and CEO of the HBCU Campaign Fund organization, a supportive non-profit group for Historically Black Colleges and Universities, leadership plays a substantial role in the operation of an institution. This select group of individuals is responsible for shaking policies, changing perspectives and making decisions that affect millions through their educational needs daily at an HBCU institution.
Below, HCF has compiled a list of ten HBCU Presidents who are dominant influential leaders and currently displaying the following responsibilities in leadership in the progress of moving their institutions forward.
10. Dr. Andrea L. Miller – President of LeMoyne-Owen College – Memphis, TN
Making history by becoming the first women and the second alumnus to serve as president since the college was founded in 1862. Dr. Andrea L. Miller was appointed as the 12th President of LeMoyne-Owen College and took office on September 1, 2015.
Since taking the helm, Dr. Miller most significant highlights are stabilizing enrollment by nearly 1,000 students and increasing its endowment fund with $12.8 million inputted. With a strategic plan, Miller has a set goal of doubling enrollment and the endowment by the year 2020.
With more than 20 years of experience in higher education, prior to her appointment at LeMoyne-Owen College, Dr. Miller served as chancellor of Baton Rouge Community College (BRCC) in Louisiana. She also served for five years as chancellor of SOWELA Technical Community College in Louisiana. And served six years as Provost and executive vice president for Academic and Student Affairs at Southwest Tennessee Community College and vice president for Academic Affairs/dean of faculty at LeMoyne-Owen College.
9. Dr. Hakim J. Lucas – President of Virginia Union University – Richmond, VA
Just recently named as the 13th President of Virginia Union University, Dr. Hakim J. Lucas brings nearly two decades of progressive leadership experience in higher education.
Dr. Lucas is swiftly establishing innovating ways at the helm in constituting the institution forward by involving the students physically and socially to interact their necessary needs in continuing their education. His career success includes fundraising, strategic planning, and the engagement and retention of students at Historically Black Colleges and Universities.
Prior to his appointment at VUU, Dr. Lucas served as the Vice President for Institutional Advancement at Bethune-Cookman University. He also served as Director of Development at State University of New York at Old Westbury and the Dean of Institutional Advancement and Development at Medgar Evers College in Brooklyn, NY.
Dr. Lucas received his bachelor’s from Morehouse College, a masters degree from Tufts University and a master of Divinity from Union Theological Seminary. He received his doctoral degree in education from Fordham University.
8. Dr. Austin A. Lane – President of Texas Southern University – Houston, TX
Dr. Austin A. Lane, who was named the sole finalist in becoming the 12th President of Texas Southern University, assume post on June 7, 2016. He replaced Dr. John M. Rudley, who served as president since 2008.
Committed to focusing on student recruitment and maintaining strong enrollment and retention polices at TSU. Dr. Lane served as Executive Vice Chancellor of Lone Star College, where he was the lead administrator for Academic Affairs, Student Services, Workforce Education, Corporate College, Honors College, International Programs, Strategic Planning and Assessments and University Centers in the Woodlands and University Park. He also served as the third president of Lone Star College – Montgomery for six years, leading an institution that experienced the fastest growth in Texas and the nation. Dr. Lane also served in a host of prior positions.
As a native of New Jersey, he received a bachelor’s degree from Langston University in Oklahoma, a masters from the University of Oklahoma, and an Ed.D from the University of Alabama.
Dr. Lane has been as a recipient of the 2015 Drum Major Award, 2014 Interfaith of the Woodlands Hometown Hero Honoree, and 2012 Pacesetter of the Yard of the National Council for Marketing and Public Relations.
7. Dr. Kevin D. Rome – President of Fisk University – Nashville, TN
Named as the 16th President of Fisk University, Dr. Kevin D. Rome Sr. brings his transformational leadership to the university.
Taking office as of June 30, 2017, Dr. Rome served as President of Lincoln University of Missouri. During his tenure, Rome managed a budget in excess of $57 million and was responsible for overseeing the operational efficiency of the university. The university witnessed a 50% increase in student enrollment in addition to the creation of institutional programs and initiatives.
Prior to serving as President of Lincoln University of Missouri, Dr. Rome served as Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs and Enrollment Management at North Carolina Central University. He also served as vice president for Student Services at Morehouse College, vice president for Campus Life at Clayton State University, and Assistant Vice Chancellor for Student Life and Diversity at Indiana University – Purdue University, Indianapolis.
He received his bachelor’s degree from Morehouse College and a Master’s degree from the University of Georgia. He also received a doctoral degree from the University of Texas at Austin.
6. Dr. Ruth J. Simmons – President of Prairie View A&M College – Prairie View, TX
On October 19, 2017, Dr. Ruth J. Simmons, a nationally recognized leader in higher education, became the sole finalist and was named the 8th President of Prairie View A&M University.
Bringing to PVAMU, administrative experience in Ivy League schools, a women’s university, and a historically black college. Dr. Simmons served as President of Brown University from 2001-2012. Prior to, she held an appointment as professor of Africana Studies at Brown. She served in various faculty and administrative roles at the University of South California, Princeton University, and Spelman College before becoming President of Smith College, the largest women’s college in the United States.
Dr. Simmons is the recipient of many honors, including a Fulbright Fellowship to France, the 2001 President’s Award from UNCF, the 2002 Fulbright Lifetime Achievement Medal, the 2004 Eleanor Roosevelt Val-kill Medal and many more.
Dr. Simmons received her bachelor’s degree from Dillard University, a masters and doctoral from Harvard University.
5. Dr. Makola M. Abdullah – President of Virginia State University – Petersburg, VA
Welcomed as the 14th President of Virginia State University, Dr. Makola M. Adullah brings premier leadership to the university.
Under his leadership, the university has experienced significant achievements. Those include an increase of 50 percent in the freshman enrollment. The university was recognized as one of the nation’s top 20 “Best Colleges For African-Americans” by ESSENCE magazine. Established partnerships with local school systems wherein VSU students tutor students in mathematics and reading and opened the Academic Center of Excellence as one-stop hub for first-year students to receive career and academic advising and tutorial services.
Prior to his appointment, Dr. Abdullah served as provost and senior vice president at Bethune-Cookman University in Daytona Beach, Fla., provost and vice president for Academic Affairs at Florida Memorial University in Miami Gardens, Fla., and dean and director of 1890 land grants programs at Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University in Tallahassee, Fla.
Dr. Abdullah received his Bachelor’s degree from Howard University and a Master’s degree from Northwestern University. He also received his doctoral degree from Northwestern University. Dr. Abdullah is the youngest African American to receive a Ph.D. in engineering.
Dr. Abdullah was named the HBCU Male President of the Year by HBCU Digest in 2017.
4. Dr. Dwaun J. Warmack – President of Harris-Stowe State University – St. Louis, MO
Appointed as the President of Harris-Stowe State University, effective July 14, 2014. Dr. Dwaun J. Warmack brings more than 15 years of higher education experience to Harris-Stowe at the time.
Since his tenure at HSSU, a few of his significant highlights includes increasing grants totaling approximately $3.5 million, HSSU was approved to offer graduate degree programs, for the first time in university history, increased academic degree programs by 100%, going from 14 majors to 31 majors and minors in one year, and increasing applications by over 100% in the past five years.
Prior to his appointment, Dr. Warmack served as the Vice President for Student Affairs at Bethune-Cookman University and at the age of 33, making him the youngest Vice President in the school’s history. He was then promoted to senior vice president for Administration and Student Services. Dr. Warmack also held positions at Rhodes College, Western Carolina University, and Delta State University.
Dr. Warmack holds a doctor of education degree in educational leadership with specialization in higher education from Union University in Jackson, TN. He received his bachelors and masters degrees both from Delta State University in Cleveland, MS.
3. Dr. Roslyn C. Artis – President of Benedict College – Columbia, SC
Earning for the second time in history, the distinct honor of serving as the first-female President of a collegiate institution in the United States. Dr. Roslyn C. Artis was named President of Benedict College on June 30, 2017.
Prior to her appointment at Benedict, Dr. Artis served as President of Florida Memorial University where unrestricted gifts increased by 20%, restricted gifts increased by 38%, and revenue from grants and sponsored research increased by 22%. Dr. Artist is credited with soliciting and receiving the largest gift from a single donor ($3.8 m) in the institutions history. She completed construction on a state-of-the-art Science Annex and a comprehensive Athletic Facility and Wellness Center on campus.
Serving as an educational advisor to the U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security. Dr. Artis has served as Chair of the Educational Committee for the Department of Homeland Security Academic Advisory Council (HSAAC) to which she was appointed by former U.S. Security Jeh Johnson under the administration of President Barack Obama.
Dr. Artis received her bachelor’s degree from West Virginia State University, a doctoral degree in Higher Education Leadership and Policy from Vanderbilt University. She holds a Juris doctorate from West Virginia University College of Law. She also holds a certificate of Fundraising Management from Indiana University and a certificate of Mastery in Prior Learning Assessment from DePaul University.
2. Dr. Herman J. Felton Jr. – President of Wiley College – Marshall, TX
Named as the 17th President of Wiley College on December 11, 2018. Dr. Herman J. Felton, Jr., is one of HBCUs fervent leaders to take the helm.
Prior to accepting the post at Wiley, Dr. Felton has served as the President of Wilberforce University. During his tenure, he successfully secured $3.8 million in programmatic grants to strengthen the institutions Master degree programs; increased career placement through advisement, and created an Intramural Complex with a $50,000 grant secured from the Home Depot Retool Your School Campus Improvement Program. As a result of Dr. Felton’s engagement efforts, alumni support grew significantly, with $458,000 in gifts being garnered at the 2017 Wilberforce University National Alumni Association Conference. Dr. Felton also secured $350,000 to create the Dr. Mark and Shelly Wilson Center for Entrepreneurship, Social Good, and Transformational Leadership.
He is the co-founder of the Higher Education Leadership Foundation (H.E.L.F.), an organization ensuring that a pipeline of transformational, highly skilled and principal leaders are identified and cultivated to meet the needs, challenges and opportunities facing the nation’s Historically Black Colleges and Universities.
Dr. Felton received his bachelor’s degree from Edward Waters College and a J.D. from the Levin College of Law at the University of Florida.
1. Dr. Walter M. Kimbrough – President of Dillard University – New Orleans, LA
Coming to Dillard University in 2012, Dr. Walter M. Kimbrough has been recognized for his superlative leadership, research and writings on and in HBCUs as well as on African-American men in college.
Dr. Kimbrough previously served seven years as President of Philander Smith College in Little Rock, AR. During his tenure, the college dramatically increased student recruitment and graduation rates. The university adopted a new mission and greatly raised its stature by focusing on its core values and history as an HBCU and a charter member of UNCF.
As President of Philander Smith, Kimbrough was among the youngest college presidents in the nation at the age of 37. Prior to, he served four years as vice president for Student Affairs at Albany State University in Albany, Ga. He also served as director of Student Activities and Leadership at Old Dominion University in Norfolk, VA., and held administrative posts at Georgia State University and Emory University.
Kimbrough has received numerous honors and awards. He was selected as a 2001 Nissan-ETS HBCU Fellow and a 2002 participant in the Millennium Initiative Sponsored by the American Association of State Colleges and Universities. In 2009, he was named by Diverse Issues in Higher Education as one of the “25 To Watch.” And in 2010 he made the coveted EBONY magazine Power 100 list of the 100 doers and influencers in the African-American community.
He received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Georgia, a masters from Miami University, and a doctoral from Georgia State University.
Saul Jimenez Sandoval, California State University, Fresno
Stephanie Krah, Central State University (*)
Martin Lemelle, Grambling State University (*)
Thomson Ling, Caldwell University
James Overton, University of Massachusetts, Boston
Michael McFrazier, Prairie View A&M University (*)
Heather Shipley, University of Texas at San Antonio
Nicole Stokes DuPass, Holy Family University
Elaine Wong, University of California, Riverside
The MSI Aspiring Leaders is a three-day forum and mentoring program developed by the CMSI that will create a space for prominent Minority Serving Institutions’ (MSI) leaders to engage with mid-career aspiring leaders from the education, non-profit, and business sectors in an effort to prepare the next generations of MSI presidents.
Supported by $765,000 in grants from the ECMC Foundation, The Kresge Foundation, and the Penn Executive Doctorate program, MSI Aspiring Leaders includes both a leadership forum and a mentorship program. The Forum will include discussions and workshops on topics such as the presidential nomination process, managing relationships with faculty, using data to make decisions, fiscal management, strategic fundraising, assessing student learning, and navigating the media.
Following the forum, mentors, and their mentees will participate in a one-on-one relationship over two years, CMSI will facilitate these relationships and provide benchmarks to be completed at various points throughout the two years, with the hope that these relationships may be part of a future longitudinal study to measure the influence of such mentorship on mentees’ aspiring leaders’ career trajectories. The structure of the MSI Aspiring Leaders program aims to cultivate future MSI presidents by strengthening pathways to leadership and building connections between peers with similar aspirations and abilities.
“This forum will celebrate the diversity of experiences from those in the nonprofit and education sectors and will cultivate collaborations that will build the next generation of MSI college presidents.” said Marybeth Gasman, Director of CMSI.
In an effort to encourage attendance and minimize financial burden, MSI Aspiring Leaders is free of program fees to all invited participants. In addition, all meals and materials will be provided by CMSI. Participants will also receive travel stipends to offset the cost of their personal travel and lodging.
About the Penn Center for Minority Serving Institutions
The Penn Center for Minority Serving Institutions brings together researchers and practitioners from Historically Black Colleges and Universities, Tribal Colleges and Universities, Hispanic Serving Institutions, and Asian American, Native American, and Pacific Islander Serving Institutions. CMSI’s goals include: elevating the educational contributions of MSIs; ensuring that they are a part of national conversations; bringing awareness to the vital role MSIs play in the nation’s economic development; increasing the rigorous scholarship of MSIs; connecting MSIs’ academic and administrative leadership to promote reform initiatives; and strengthening efforts to close educational achievement gaps among disadvantaged communities. The Penn Center for Minority Serving Institutions is part of the Graduate School of Education at the University of Pennsylvania. For further information about CMSI, please visit www.gse.upenn.edu/cmsi.