The Four Finalists for the Presidency of Alabama State University

This past Thursday the four finalists for the presidency of Alabama State University were on campus to meet with members of the campus community. The four finalists are:

Tony Atwater is a professor and former president of Norfolk State University in Virginia. From 2005 to 2010, he was president of Indiana University of Pennsylvania. Earlier, Dr. Atwater was provost at Youngstown State University in Ohio. Dr. Atwater is a graduate of Hampton University in Virginia. He holds a Ph.D. in communication research from Michigan State University.

Willie D. Larkin was named president of Grambling State University in Louisiana in 2015. He resigned a year later. Before coming to Grambling, Dr. Larkin was the chief of staff at Morgan State University in Baltimore. 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.

Robert C. Mock Jr. was named president of the Charlotte campus of Johnson & Wales University in 2015. He has since stepped down from that post. Previously, he was vice president for student affairs at the University of Kentucky. Earlier, he was associate vice provost for student affairs at the University of Arkansas.

Quinton T. Ross Jr. is an Alabama State Senator. Dr. Ross also has served as director of adult education at Trenholm State Technical College in Montgomery, an institution where Blacks make up 61 percent of the student body. Senator Ross holds bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees, all from Alabama State University. He was a finalist for president of Alabama State in 2013.

Darrell Hudson, a trustee who is chair of the search committee, stated that “we’re looking for a visionary, someone who can provide some stability for the university and help to alleviate some of the financial challenges that the university is facing. We want to select a president who will work to increase our enrollment and retention rates. The next president of this university will be expected to be student centered and one who will provide the leadership that is needed to advance Alabama State University’s mission of educational excellence.”

No timetable has been announced for when the new president will be selected.

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