New Administrative Posts in Higher Education for Eight African Americans

Nadine Petty was named chief diversity officer and associate vice president for community, equity, and diversity at the University of New Hampshire. She has been serving as the executive director of the Center for Diversity and Enrichment at the University of Iowa.

Dr. Petty earned a bachelor’s degree in English and a master’s degree in teaching from the University of Rochester in New York. She holds a Ph.D. in educational leadership and organizational development from the University of Louisville in Kentucky.

Cecil Hicks was appointed associate vice chancellor of diversity, equity, access and inclusion at the University of Nebraska-Omaha. For the past six years, he was assistant vice chancellor and director of the university’s Office of Human Resources.

Hicks is a graduate of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, where he majored in business management. He earned an MBA at the University of Nebraska-Omaha.

Whitney Meyer was promoted to vice president and chief diversity officer at the University of North Florida. Meyer previously worked at the university in various departments including the Military and Veterans Resource Center, Student Union Administration, Alumni Affairs, and Public Relations.

Meyer holds a bachelor’s degree in communication and international relations and a master’s degree in management from the University of North Florida.

Charles Howard, the chaplain at the University of Pennsylvania, has been given the added duties of vice president for social equity and community. He has served as university chaplain since 2008.

Dr. Howard is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania. He holds a master of divinity degree from the Andover Newton Theological School in Massachusetts and a Ph.D. from Lutheran Theological Seminary of Philadelphia.

Merlene Aitken-Smith was named senior associate athletics director/senior woman administrator at Grambling State University in Louisiana. She had served seven years as the senior associate athletic director for compliance, student services/senior woman administrator, and Title IX investigator at Clayton State University in Morrow, Georgia.

A native of Yonkers, New York, Aitken-Smith earned a bachelor’s degree in political science from Brooklyn College of the City University of New York. She holds a juris doctorate from the Massachusetts School of Law.

Sheryl Nichols has been promoted to associate vice president of student engagement and success at Beacon College in Leesburg, Florida. She has been serving as director of the Center for Student Success at the college. Prior to joining Beacon College in 2015 as an admissions counselor, Dr. Nichols served as director of admissions at DeVry University.

Dr. Nichols is a graduate of SUNY Oneonta in New York, where she majored in business economics. She holds a master’s degree in human services counseling and is completing work on an educational doctorate from Regent University in Virginia Beach.

Lonnie Williams was appointed interim vice chancellor for diversity and community relations at Arkansas State University. Dr. Williams most recently served as a special assistant to the chancellor at Arkansas State. He joined Arkansas State in 2003, and previously served as associate vice chancellor for student affairs before joining the Chancellor’s Office in 2017.

Dr. Williams holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration, a master’s degree in student personnel services and a doctorate in adult education, all from the University of Arkansas.

Nicole G. Price has been appointed the first vice president for diversity, equity, and inclusion at the Wentworth Institute of Technology in Boston. Most recently, she served as chief executive officer for the Northeast Region and chief equal opportunity and compliance officer at KIDSVAX. Earlier, Price was the inaugural chief diversity and inclusion officer at Suffolk University in Boston.

Price is a graduate of the University of Virginia, where she majored in rhetoric and communication studies. She earned a juris doctorate at William and Mary School of Law in Williamsburg, Virginia.

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