UNCF Creates Executive Leadership Institute for HBCU and PBI Presidents and Board Chairs
Funded by The Kresge Foundation, ELI has a mission to deliver a leadership curriculum and engagement model designed specifically for institutional presidents and board members of HBCUs and PBIs. ELI was conceived based on the belief that transformational change in higher education institutions is only possible when executive and governance leadership are aligned, informed and interconnected to other leaders engaged in the pursuit of similar missions and goals.
To kick-off this initiative, ELI implemented two complementary but distinct programs: In February, the Executive Leadership Series invited board members at HBCUs and PBIs to participate in a virtual webinar series designed to amplify best practices in board engagement and stewardship, while encouraging relationship-building and networking among HBCU and PBI board members. A virtual roundtable conversation with TIAA-CREF President and CEO Dr. Roger Ferguson and Prairie View A&M University President Dr. Ruth Simmons, which was moderated by UNCF President and CEO Dr. Michael L. Lomax.
In the summer of 2021, ELI launched the Presidential Leadership Institute, a cohort experience developed in conjunction with the Higher Education Leadership Foundation, for select HBCUs and PBIs that seek a higher level of engagement and the opportunity to collaborate with other presidents and boards.
“HBCUs and PBIs with the right leadership, resources and vision operate as transformational organizations for their students, alumni and communities,” said Lomax. “In an era where collaboration is key to any institution’s survival, ELI will encourage relationship development across our community and support leadership as they implement strategies and programs to benefit the diverse individuals and communities HBCUs and PBIs serve.”
“The modern-day CEO serving at our HBCUs require a unique skillset in addition to the best-in-class core competencies required to lead,” said Dr. Herman Felton president of Wiley University and co-founder of the Higher Education Leadership Foundation. “The philanthropic support of The Kresge Foundation and partnership with the iconic brand UNCF demonstrates a palpable synergy in our shared commitment to ensuring HBCU leaders glean from passionate and committed administrators who can share from the lived experience while simultaneously creating a collegial web to support leadership at HBCUs.”
“At a time when all colleges and their students face unprecedented challenges from COVID-19, a terrible recession and the ongoing legacy of racism, it’s critical that HBCUs and PBIs, the bedrock of African American higher education, are strong,” said William F. L. Moses, managing director, education, The Kresge Foundation. “We are delighted to support UNCF’s Executive Leadership Institute, designed to strengthen HBCUs and PBIs as they navigate the complex terrain of fiscal management, governance and accountability in a new, more complex, era.”
This Executive Leadership Institute pays untold dividends, making UNCF’s promise of working toward better futures for us all.