Lawrence M. Drake II Is the New Leader of Bethune-Cookman University in Florida

The board of trustees of Bethune-Cookman University in Daytona Beach, Florida, has named Lawrence M. Drake II as interim president. He replaces Hiram C. Powell, who announced earlier this month that he was stepping down.

“I am deeply grateful to the board for the opportunity to help advance Dr. Bethune’s incredible legacy into the 21st century,” Dr. Drake said. “The truth is, we don’t have a minute to waste, so I pledge to give everything I have to advance our vital mission. My priorities are the four pillars of every successful university – financial health, faculty excellence, student outcomes, and community partnership.”

Dr. Drake has been serving as dean of the College of Business & Entrepreneurship at the university. His scholarship and research interests include the effects of human behavior at the intersection of cognitive science, applied psychology media innovation, and immersive learning. He is the author of Color Him Father (Brown Girls Books, 2019).

Prior to joining Bethune-Cookman University, Dr. Drake served as chair of HOPE 360, an executive development consultancy. Earlier, he had a 21-year career with the Coca-Cola Company, where he was division leader for 15 nations in western Africa.

Dr. Drake holds bachelor’s degrees from Fisk University in Nashville and Georgia State University. He earned an MBA from Rockhurst University in Kansas City, Missouri, and a master’s degree and a Ph.D. n psychology from Fielding Graduate University in Santa Barbara, California.

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