The Next President of Grambling State University in Louisiana

Grambling larkinState University, a historically Black educational institution in Louisiana, announced on June 4 that Willie D. Larkin will be its next president. The university, in northern Louisiana, enrolls about 4,100 undergraduates and 900 graduate students.

Willie D. Larkin is the chief of staff at Morgan State University in Baltimore. He has held that post since 2012. He formerly served as chief of staff for the University of Wisconsin Colleges and Extension.

Dr. Larkin holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Tuskegee University in Alabama. He holds a Ph.D. in agricultural education from Ohio State University.

Frank G. Pogue stepped down as president of Grambling in June 2014 after four years on the job. Cynthia Warrick, who earlier was a senior fellow at the Center for Minority Health Services Research in the College of Pharmacy at Howard University in Washington, D.C., has been serving as interim president for nearly a year. Last November, the Faculty Senate at Grambling State University approved a resolution of “no confidence” in Dr. Warrick’s leadership and called for her dismissal.

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  1. The hiring of Dr. Willie “shucking and jiving(see ‘Happy Video’)” Larkin is another classic example why many HBCUs continue to maintain the status quo because they hire personnel who have are mediocre (at best), unprofessional, dismissive towards students & faculty needs, and belong to another so-called Black organization. In order for HBCUs to really move forward in any substantive way, it must cease and desist in the hiring of personnel who have a track record of not working in the best interests of HBCUs in all capacities (i.e., contracts to Black owned firms, the hiring of more native born Black male professors, etc.).

    For those who dissent, I would suggest that you contact intellectually honest faculty and staff at Morgan State University about their perception of Dr. Willie “Shucking and Jiving” Larkin.

    • Just shut the hell up, you worry about Morgan State and we got Grambling. Your opinion doesn’t matter, have a good/bless life.

      • Re: James,

        It appears that we disagree based upon your emotive and foul language response. It’s quite obvious that you belong to one of these so-called Black groups that literally maintain the status quo for a plethora of reasons. Since you’re affiliated with Grambling State University (GSU), I would highly suggest that you take this same misguided outrage and energy to devise, create, and implement a strategy to increase their “30 percent graduation rate” (

        The fact remains James, no one is above being critiqued regardless of their group affiliation, geographic location, religious affiliation, or their gender. In other words, this includes Dr. Willie “Shucking and Jiving” Larkin to the perpetual war mongering, neoliberal, and corporatist President Obama. Finally, it also appears that you’re a fire breathing pseudo-Christian for even saying “have a bless life”. In my view, you disjointed comment clearly proves that neocolonial is alive an well in 2015.

  2. How could anyone with an inkling of intelligence describe Dr. Willie “apathetic” Larkin as “dynamite” (Newsstar, June 4, 2015), his professional behavior at Morgan State University has been nothing more than the antithesis of “dynamite”.

    In other words, when intellectually honesty and brave faculty, undergraduate and graduate students seriously question and hold “dynamite” Larkin accountable for his administrative decision making, that’s when the dismissiveness and administrative malfeasance will occur.

  3. Michael,
    Your points are well-taken about the dilemma at HBCUs. The HBCU hiring process as well as recycling program for Presidents and Vice Presidents must stop. Otherwise it SHALL ensure the demise of HBCUs at their hands. Legislative bodies will only come along and seal the deal for the public HBCUs.

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