UNCF Board of Directors
Milton H. Jones, Jr.Read more
Kieth CockrellRead more
Celia A. ColbertRead more
Gregory G. CunninghamRead more
Vladimir GaliotheRead more
Paul GamaRead more
Alfred G. GoldsteinRead more
Gerri Mason HallRead more
Gerald JohnsonRead more
Aloysius “Ish” McLaughlinRead more
Ken MehlmanRead more
Ben MinicucciRead more
Rhonda MorrisRead more
Sharon MurphyRead more
Tara ParkerRead more
Laurie ReadheadRead more
Danette Anthony ReedRead more
Nicole Pullen RossRead more
David SableRead more
LaSonja ScottRead more
Teresa M. SebastianRead more
William F. StasiorRead more
Terry WoodardRead more
Safroadu (Saf) Yeboah-AmankwahRead more
Milton H. Jones, Jr.
Peachtree Providence Partners
Chair, UNCF Board of Directors
Kieth Cockrell, as President of Bank of America Charlotte and Head of Sports Sponsorships, is responsible for connecting banking and investment resources offered through the banks’ eight lines of business to people and companies across the region, deploying Bank of America’s resources to address social and economic concerns, and helping the local community thrive.
Cockrell previously served as the Global Technology & Operations chief operating officer with responsibility for programs, business controls, oversight and operations as well as external relationships, for nearly 95,000 teammates in more than 35 countries.
Prior to that, Cockrell served as head of Specialty Client Services for Consumer & Small Business and president of Bank of America Michigan. During his 39-year career in financial services, Cockrell has held several key executive roles including COO for Consumer and Small business, national community markets executive responsible for 1,800 financial centers, customer service and support responsible for all call center operations and led the debit card and ATM businesses. He also oversaw the Specialty Clients Services, Life Services, Employee Financial Services and Client Escalations teams.
Cockrell is a passionate ally and advocate for a diverse and inclusive workplace. He has served as vice chair of the Global Diversity & Inclusion (D&I) Council. In this role, he was instrumental in establishing several employee networks, including the Black Professional Group; the Hispanic/Latino Organization for Leadership and Advancement; the Military Support and Assistance Group; and the Black Executive Advisory Council.
In 2019, he received the Root Award and the Vanguard Award, two D&I awards recognizing his leadership role in promoting equality, unity and multiculturalism. He is an active member and advisor in several employee networks. Active in the community, he co-chaired the 2020 Charlotte City Bond Campaign. He plays a vital role on various boards with local organizations, including immediate past chair of the Levine Museum of the New South, the incoming chair for the Charlotte Regional Business Alliance, Foundation for the Carolinas Community Real Property Holdings, Inc., My Brother’s Keeper Charlotte-Mecklenburg, and is the vice chair of the board of trustees for HBCU Johnson C. Smith University.
Also, Cockrell has previously served on the boards of United Way, Goodwill Industries, Second Harvest Food Bank of Metrolina and the American Diabetes Association, which previously named him Father of the Year. Cockrell is a Michigan Chronicle Men of Excellence honoree and received the Excellence in Economic Development award from the 100 Black Men of Detroit.
Celia A. Colbert
Senior Vice President, Secretary and Assistant General Counsel
Merck & Company (Retired)
UNCF Board of Directors
Gregory G. Cunningham
Vice President, Enterprise Diversity and Inclusion
UNCF Board of Directors
UNCF Board of Directors
President, Personal Health Care
Procter & Gamble Co.
UNCF Board of Directors
Alfred G. Goldstein
President and CEO
A.G. & Associates
UNCF Board of Directors
Gerri Mason Hall
Vice President, Global Diversity, Inclusion and Belonging
UNCF Board of Directors
UNCF Board of Directors
Aloysius “Ish” McLaughlin
UNCF Board of Directors
Global Head of Public Affairs
Co-Head of Global Impact
Kohlberg Kravis Roberts (KKR)
UNCF Board of Directors
UNCF Board of Directors
Executive Vice President and Chief Information Officer
Wells Fargo & Company
UNCF Board of Directors
UNCF Board of Directors
Executive Vice President
CIO, Global Technology and Operations
Bank of America
UNCF Board of Directors
Danette Anthony Reed
Danette Anthony Reed is the International President and CEO of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated®. She is the 31st woman to lead the nation’s first African American sorority for college-educated women.
Anthony Reed ascended to the Alpha Kappa Alpha’s highest office in July 2022. Her 46 years of continuous sorority service at local, regional, and international levels have well-prepared her for this role.
As International President and CEO, she sets policies and programs. In addition, she leads the sorority’s 18-member Board of Directors representing other international officers and ten regional directors who oversee the management of the sorority’s more than 1,061 chapters and 320,000 initiated members throughout the United States and 11 other countries.
A Dallas, TX resident and retired PepsiCo executive, Anthony Reed brings decades of corporate leadership, community engagement, service, and progressive sorority governance.
During her tenure at PepsiCo, Anthony Reed rose through the operations ranks at Frito-Lay, becoming the first African American woman plant director to lead the start-up of an $80 million bakery facility in Dallas. She later moved to Frito-Lay’s corporate office and led a cross-functional team in the commercialization of $300 million in innovative products. She retired in 2017 after 34 years of service.
Anthony Reed holds a Master of Business Administration (MBA), specializing in Finance, from Southern Methodist University and a Bachelor of Science in Industrial Engineering from Northwestern University.
In addition to her Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority service, Anthony Reed is a charter member of the Greater Denton County (TX) Chapter of The Links, Incorporated®; Top Ladies of Distinction; the Carrousels of Dallas, TX; and the National Association of Parliamentarians. Currently, she serves as treasurer of the Krugerville, TX, Community Development Corporation.
She has received numerous honors, awards, and accolades, including Who’s Who Among Executives and Professionals, Women’s Inclusion Network Lifetime Achievement Award, PepsiCo’s Global Harvey Russell Diversity and Inclusion Award, National Council of Negro Women Outstanding Service Award, Greater Denton County Chapter of The Links, Incorporated Leadership Award, Women’s Inclusion Network Leadership Development Award, and Women of Color Making an Impact Award.
Nicole Pullen Ross
Partner and New York Region Head of Private Wealth Management
Head of Sports and Entertainment Solutions
UNCF Board of Directors
LaSonja Scott is an accomplished executive who brings deep financial, strategic planning and international expertise to her role as chief of staff to the chairman and CEO of The Coca-Cola Company. Scott is responsible for the operations of the Office of the CEO, as well as leading the implementation of some of the company’s top business strategies.
Scott has nearly 30 years of experience in finance, strategic planning and accounting and has worked in the Coca-Cola system for the past 22 years in various finance positions at the company’s global headquarters as well as in its North America and Europe operations.
As a Coca-Cola system veteran, she has led teams of increasing accountability across finance, global IT, North America Foodservice, investor relations and the Controller’s Group. She also was a finance manager for the Europe Group, based in London.
Among her most notable roles, Scott helped communicate the company’s growth story to investors and build global finance capabilities. Specifically, as director of investor relations, she engaged with the global investment community to provide insights on operating results and strategy while providing business and analytical support to the senior management team.
In addition, as global finance director, created and transformed the global finance capability strategy and delivered new and more digitized ways to grow capabilities across the organization. She developed networked communities working across departments to upskill teams in the digital, finance and enterprise governance areas.
Scott holds a Bachelor of Science in Accounting from South Carolina State University and a Master of Business Administration (MBA) from Mercer University. She is also a certified public accountant (CPA) and a certified internal auditor (CIA).
Teresa M. Sebastian
President and CEO
The Dominion Asset Group
UNCF Board of Directors
William F. Stasior
Senior Chairman (Retired)
Booz Allen Hamilton
Chair Emeritus, UNCF Board of Directors
Terry Woodard is a managing director and vice chairman in J.P. Morgan Private Bank’s Financial Sponsors Group. Woodard, along with his team of financial and service specialists, are responsible for handling the day-to-day banking, investment, tax and financial planning needs of individuals and non-profit organizations.
Woodard has been with the firm for over 35 years. He started his career with the Chase Manhattan Bank and attended the Credit Training Program. He has held positions in General Auditing, Risk Management, Credit Underwriting, and Client Management.
Currently, Woodard is the global co-chair of BOLD (Black Organization for Leadership and Development), co-chair and co-founder of the Asset Management Black Leadership Forum and a member of the Executive Leadership Council (ELC). He is the captain of the Morehouse College Recruiting Team and is actively involved in undergraduate recruiting at Howard University.
He is the chairman of the board of Jazz House Kids, chairman of the board of the Sphinx Organization, a member of the Friends of MoMA and a former board member of the Girls Scouts in Essex, Hudson, and Union Counties of New Jersey.
Woodard joined JPMorgan Chase after graduating with a Bachelor of Arts in Finance from Morehouse College in Atlanta, GA. He is the recipient of the Harlem YMCA Black Achievers in Industry Award, The Dreamer Award from the Morehouse Manhattan Alumni Chapter, Alumnus of the Year Award from the Morehouse College National Alumni Association and a Crain’s New York 2022 Notable Diverse Leader in Banking and Finance.
Safroadu (Saf) Yeboah-Amankwah
UNCF Board of Directors
Clarence D. Armbrister
Dr. Vernell Bennett-FairsRead more
Dr. Paulette Dillard
Dr. Cheryl Evans Jones
Dr. A. Zachary Faison, Jr.Read more
Dr. Herman J. Felton, Jr.Read more
Dr. George T. French, Jr.Read more
Dr. Jaffus HardrickRead more
Dr. Bobbie Knight
Dr. Hakim J. Lucas
Dr. Ivy R. TaylorRead more
- creation of SA Works to focus on creating a strong workforce development framework for the entire community;
- execution of local “My Brother’s Keeper” initiative to help connect more young men of color to opportunity;
- creation of a city faith based partnership initiative;
- increased college scholarships for students through city’s Martin Luther King Commission;
- approval of a package of charter amendments in the May 2015 municipal election, including a historic City Council salary initiative;
- settlement of a contentious police contract that provides over $80million in healthcare cost savings to the San Antonio taxpayers;
- several new companies relocating to San Antonio and bringing more than 1,000 new jobs;
- effective job training program, Promise Zone to Work, placed its first graduates;
- adoption of an annexation plan to ensure the city’s continued fiscal viability;
- UNESCO World Heritage Designation of San Antonio’s Spanish colonial missions;
- Google Fiber and AT&T Gigapower delivered fiber optic network;
- Negotiation of Uber and Lyft ride sharing services operating agreement for San Antonio;
DiversityFIRST Award recognizing City for achievements and commitment to the pursuit of cultural diversity and inclusion in the community and workplace;
- Achievement of functional zero in Veterans Homelessness through the Mayor’s Challenge to End Veteran Homelessness in partnership with HUD;
- Named first Monarch Butterfly Champion City in the country.
Dr. David A. ThomasRead more
Dr. Carmen Walters
Dr. Dwaun J. WarmackRead more
Dr. Vernell Bennett-Fairs
Dr. Vernell Bennett-Fairs began her tenure as the 13th president of LeMoyne-Owen College on January 5, 2021. Dr. Bennett-Fairs is the second woman chosen to lead the only historically black college or university in Memphis, TN.
A native of Lorain, Ohio, Dr. Bennett-Fairs is a trained vocalist and orator who has served as a tenured associate professor and college administrator in progressive roles in her twenty-five years in higher education. However, her most cherished role is that of student advocate. Formerly, Dr. Bennett-Fairs served as the Vice President for Student Affairs at Delta State University (DSU). There, she was responsible for the oversight of the Office of Admissions, the Office of Financial Aid, University Police, the Office of Student Development, Housing and Residence Life, the University Health Center, and the Office of Career Counseling and Placement.
During her tenure at DSU, Dr. Bennett-Fairs founded the Okra Patch, which is an engagement initiative for students, faculty, staff, administration, alumni and community members. Other innovative Student Affairs programming projects that Dr. Bennett-Fairs spearheaded at DSU included: the annual men’s and women’s conferences and leadership retreat for student leaders, the international festival Culture on the Quad, the Statesmen Club pipeline of recruitment of high school and community college students, and Each One Recruit One. Dr. Bennett-Fairs guided DSU’s Office of Admissions’ recruitment operations and marketing, developed virtual recruitment and tours, and created contemporary methods of recruitment including utilizing social media. Her all-hands-on-deck approach to recruitment fostered successful collaborations across the campus and within the community. Dr. Bennett-Fairs was also responsible for establishing the campus’ food pantry, the Statesman’s Shelf.
Dr. Bennett-Fairs began her postsecondary career at Kentucky State University (KSU) as a non-tenure tract Instructor of Music and advanced to the rank of tenured Associate Professor before transitioning to several administration roles. Dr. Bennett-Fairs’ career spanned 20 years at KSU where her final role was as the Vice President for Student Affairs.
Dr. Bennett-Fairs is the founder of Operation Half-Note Incorporated, a music institute geared toward pre-kindergartners that she founded at KSU. She earned a Governor’s Award in the Arts (the most prestigious honor bestowed upon citizens of the Commonwealth of Kentucky) for this groundbreaking program. Dr. Bennett-Fairs left a legacy at KSU as the creative mind behind the Thorobred Express mobile recruitment initiative. Her accomplishments at KSU are innumerable, but some of her most noteworthy include the aforementioned and having served as the President of the Faculty Senate for two consecutive terms. To date, she is the youngest person to have served as the Faculty Senate president at KSU.
Dr. Bennett-Fairs is a former Who’s Who among College and University Professors. She was identified as a Top Minority Business Leader for 2019 by the Delta Business Journal. Her most prized honors however, are those bestowed upon her by the students, which include: KSU Girls Rock, Woman of the Year, the SGA Award of Accomplishment, and her first DSU student award, a Lady Statesman Emerald Award of Excellence for Top Female Administrator.
Dr. Bennett-Fairs’ student-centered and collaborative approach as an administrator has resulted in hundreds of campus and off-campus partnerships in support of the tens of thousands of students that she has served in her 25-year career. A creative and innovative administrator, Dr. Bennett-Fairs has been the mastermind behind successful recruitment strategies and creative and innovative programming at Delta State University and Kentucky State University.
Dr. Bennett-Fairs is currently a protégé in the 2020-2021 cohort of the American Association of State Colleges and Universities’ Millennium Leadership Initiative (MLI). She is an alum of the Executive Leadership Summit, the Hawkins-Scott Leadership Institute, Leadership Kentucky, and Leadership Mississippi. Dr. Bennett-Fairs is a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated and the Mississippi Delta Chapter of the Links, Incorporated. Dr. Bennett is also a member of the Rotary Club.
Dr. Bennett-Fairs received a Bachelor’s of Music in Vocal Performance from Fisk University, a Master of Arts in Vocal Performance from Eastern Michigan University, and a Doctorate of Education in Administration and Instruction from the University of Kentucky.
Dr. Bennett-Fairs is married to Patric Fairs and has one adult son, Jeffery.
Dr. A. Zachary Faison, Jr.
Dr. A. Zachary Faison, Jr., assumed responsibility as the 30th president and CEO of Edward Waters College (EWC) (now Edward Waters University) in 2018 following a unanimous vote by the college’s board of trustees. Just 37 years old at the time of his appointment, Dr. Faison’s selection as EWU’s leader made him the youngest serving president and CEO of an historically Black college or university (HBCU).
A native of Atlanta, GA, Dr. Faison’s career exploits include distinguished professional experiences as a higher education executive administrator, educator, and attorney. Before his presidential appointment at EWU, Dr. Faison served as general counsel and vice president of external affairs at Tuskegee University in Tuskegee, AL, where he maintained responsibility as the university’s chief legal officer and provided principal oversight for its legislative and governmental relations functions. Prior to his appointment at Tuskegee, he served as vice president for enrollment management and student affairs at Virginia Union University (VUU) in Richmond, VA, where he led the university in achieving historic increases in overall student enrollment and retention having founded the VUU College for African American Men. Dr. Faison also previously served as special assistant to the president for legal and legislative affairs, community affairs and economic development at Mississippi Valley State University in Itta Bena, MS, where he later became university chief of staff before being named vice president of institutional advancement and executive director of the MVSU Foundation. Faison’s philanthropic work at MVSU yielded nearly $25 million dollars in funding to the university towards new capital projects, infrastructural improvements, and campus renovations. As a scholar-educator, he has held professorial appointments at both the undergraduate and graduate levels in various academic disciplines including political science, criminal justice and business administration. A licensed member of the State Bar of Georgia, Faison is also a former state prosecutor having prosecuted criminal felony drug cases in Georgia.
Dr. Faison graduated magna cum laude from Albany State University (ASU) with a bachelor of arts in English where he was an ASU Presidential and Foundation Scholar, Dwight D. Eisenhower National Fellow, and an ASU Velma Fudge Grant University Honors Program and Merit Scholar Graduate. He attended the University of Georgia School of Law where he earned his juris doctorate and was a member of the UGA School of Law Executive Moot Court Board and UGA Law Moot Court team. He completed post-doctoral study as a graduate of the Harvard University Graduate School of Education’s Institute for Educational Management and was a Millennium Leadership Initiative Institute Fellow of the American Association of State Colleges and Universities and Association of Public Land-Grant Universities. Additionally, Dr. Faison has earned the Certification in Fundraising Management (CFRM) designation from The Fundraising School of Philanthropy at Indiana-University-Purdue-University at Indianapolis.
Dr. Faison is active in several professional, civic, and social organizations and has delivered more than 50 presentations and lectures at conferences and professional meetings nationwide. He currently serves as a member of the Jacksonville Civic Council, the Rotary Club of Jacksonville, the DW Perkins Bar Association, and is a trustee member of the Jacksonville Chamber. He has received national recognition for his outstanding professional, community and civic achievements from The Business Journals Influencers: Rising Stars 100; the Jacksonville Business Journal (Top 40 Business Leaders Under 40); the National Bar Association (Top 40 Attorneys Under 40); The University of Georgia (Top 40 Alumnus Under 40) and Albany State University (Top 50 Alumnus Under 50).
He is the son of Alderman Faison, Sr., and Dr. Jewel J. Faison, and brother to Dr. Morgan Zacheya-Jewel Faison. Dr. Faison has been blissfully married for 12 years to Tyciee L. Faison, who is also a seasoned higher education administrator, educator and ordained minister.
Dr. Herman J. Felton, Jr.
Herman J. Felton, Jr., is the 17th president of Wiley College.
Prior to joining Wiley in December 2017, Dr. Felton served as the president of Wilberforce University, the nation’s oldest private HBCU and UNCF-member institution, since July 2016. During his tenure, he successfully secured $3.8 million in programmatic grants to strengthen the institution’s master’s degree program; increased career placement through advisement; and created an intramural complex with a $50,000 grant secured from the Home Depot Retool Your School Campus Improvement Program. As a result of Dr. Felton’s engagement efforts, alumni support grew significantly, with $458,000 in gifts being garnered at the 2017 Wilberforce University National Alumni Association Conference. Dr. Felton also secured $350,000 to create the Dr. Mark and Shelly Wilson Center for Entrepreneurship, Social Good and Transformational Leadership.
Before his appointment to Wilberforce University, Dr. Felton served as senior vice president, chief operating officer and vice president of institutional advancement for Livingstone College in Salisbury, NC. He also was the director of development while serving as a lecturer in the Government, Law, and International Affairs Department at Murray State University in Murray, KY.
Dr. Felton earned his bachelor’s degree in political science from UNCF-member institution Edward Waters College in Jacksonville, FL, and earned his J.D. from the Levin College of Law at the University of Florida.
He is co-founder of the Higher Education Leadership Foundation (H.E.L.F.), an organization ensuring that a pipeline of transformational, highly skilled and principled leaders are identified and cultivated to meet the needs, challenges and opportunities facing the nation’s Historically Black Colleges and Universities. Dr. Felton served in the United States Marine Corps for eight years.
Dr. George T. French, Jr.
Dr. George T. French, Jr., is the the fifth president of Clark Atlanta University (CAU).
Dr. French served as president of Miles College, 2006-2019 before taking the lead at CAU. During his tenure, Miles College exceeded capital campaign goals—besting previous fundraising records, achieved an unprecedented financial composite score to position the school for growth, increased student access to educational funding, and more than doubled the size of the existing campus with key land acquisitions.
Prior to serving as the president of Miles College, Dr. French served in the roles of acting and interim president for the institution between October and December 2005. Before serving as interim president, Dr. French served as a member of the president’s cabinet in the capacity of director of institutional planning and development, and as such directed the offices of alumni affairs, federal contracts and grants, Title III, institutional research and effectiveness, congressional relations and public relations.
A native of Louisville, KY, Dr. French earned a bachelor of arts in political science with an emphasis in policy analysis from the University of Louisville. He was competitively accepted into the University of Richmond Law School and completed two years of studies before being recruited by Miles College to serve as the director of development. He completed his final year of law school at Miles Law School, earning a juris doctorate. Dr. French received his Ph.D. in higher education from Jackson State University.
Dr. French also has great influence off campus grounds. He served two terms, respectively, on the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges’ Board of Trustees, and the National Advisory Committee on Institutional Quality and Integrity. He is a member of the Birmingham Business Alliance’s Executive Committee and Birmingham Museum of Art’s Board of Directors. In 2015, Dr. French co-founded Higher Education Leader Foundation to help prepare highly-skilled talent for positions of leadership at historically Black colleges and universities.
“I am thankful and blessed to have the opportunity to lead another great institution and serve as the fifth president of Clark Atlanta University,” Dr. French said. “CAU has strong faculty, students and academics. I’m optimistic about the university’s next stage of growth and eager to build on the strong foundation CAU has established.”
Dr. Jaffus Hardrick
Jaffus Hardrick, Ed.D., is an award-winning senior academic executive with a proven track record for promoting student success, enhancing student outcomes, optimizing faculty and staff development, and cultivating a culture of excellence. Dr. Hardrick fully understands the promise of education. Through education, Dr. Hardrick was fortunate to earn significant roles as a higher education administrator. He served as the vice provost for access and success at Florida International University, the nation’s fourth-largest public urban research university; assistant vice provost for academic affairs at Baylor University; and now the president of Florida Memorial University. As an education executive, he is committed to developing future leaders and closing achievement gaps among underrepresented students, and creating a culture of academic excellence in higher education. He is also the co-author of Making Global Learning Universal: Promoting Inclusion and Success for All Students (Stylus).
Dr. Hardrick’s contributions have been highlighted by national and regional organizations like Forbes, Indulge Magazine, Colleges and University Professional Association for Human Resources, Legacy Magazine, Greater Miami-Dade Chamber of Commerce, Florida Education Fund, South Florida Business and Wealth Journal, Miami Dade Chamber of Commerce and more. Under his leadership, the Chronicle of Higher Work for Higher Education has consistently recognized his previous institution for creating an exceptional environment in its “Great Colleges to Work For.” This distinction honors the largest and most respected workplace-recognition programs in the country.
A visionary leader with a keen eye for strategic direction, Dr. Hardrick has developed a record of success by working across the academy to enhance organizational effectiveness and efficiency, improve academic quality, and ensure student success. Some of his professional experiences include attracting and developing talented workforces, increasing donor and business relations, and forging strong community relationships. Dr. Hardrick has been recognized as a strategic thinker, thought leader, problem solver, consensus builder, motivator, and fund and friend raiser. He earned his bachelor’s degree from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette; a master’s degree from Prairie View A&M University; and his doctoral degree from Baylor University. He is a proud member of Sigma Pi Phi Fraternity and Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity.
Dr. Ivy R. Taylor
Dr. Ivy Ruth Taylor is the 12th president of Rust College; the first woman to lead Rust College as President.
A native of Queens, New York, Taylor has spent twenty years in San Antonio, Texas, leading efforts to connect people to opportunity. She has been an educator, affordable housing advocate, and elected official. Ivy served as Mayor of San Antonio, Texas for three years and as a member of the San Antonio City Council for five years.
Taylor’s career began as a City of San Antonio employee. She then served as Vice President of Merced Housing Texas where she worked to improve family stability for low-income apartment community residents. During her time working with residents of those apartments, she became convinced of the need to provide more access to higher education to help low income families in achieving stability. She spent six years as a lecturer at the University of Texas at San Antonio in the Public Administration Department. Taylor also served on the San Antonio Planning Commission and was previously a Commissioner for the San Antonio Urban Renewal Agency.
While serving as council member, Dr. Taylor led a significant community revitalization effort. Through her leadership, the Eastside, a distressed area of San Antonio, was awarded over $50 million in grants. This effort included a large scale community plan, and execution with many partners that resulted in new affordable housing, new educational and community programs and enhanced public investments in an area that had suffered from disinvestment.
In the summer of 2014, she was appointed as Mayor of San Antonio, per the charter’s requirements following a vacancy of the mayor’s office. In 2015, she was elected by the citizens of San Antonio. The 2014 appointment singled her out as the first African American to serve as Mayor of San Antonio. It also made San Antonio the largest city in the United States to have an African American woman serving as mayor at that time.
From day one in the Mayor’s office, Taylor showed her willingness to tackle tough issues, listen to the citizens and do what was best for the community. Accomplishments during her mayoral tenure include:
Dr. Taylor has been committed to improving educational outcomes for disadvantaged people. She has worked on many partnerships with educational organizations including local school districts, charter schools, community colleges and four-year colleges. During her six years at the University of Texas at San Antonio, she engaged her undergraduate and graduate students in community initiatives. She also developed and implemented a professional development program for Black employees at the city, county, and other public agencies.
Taylor is a positive community role model and has worked in partnership with many community agencies to improve outcomes for families. She served on the Board of Directors of Healthy Futures of Texas, which works to reduce teen and unplanned pregnancy in San Antonio and Texas. She also served on the Board of Directors of Big Brothers/Big Sisters of South Texas, which provides children facing adversity with strong and enduring, professionally supported one to one mentoring relationships. Additional past service includes stints on the boards of the San Antonio Education Partnership, Project Quest, San Antonio Zoological Association and Haven for Hope.
In 1988, Taylor arrived at Yale University as a first-generation college student. She majored in American Studies and graduated in 1992. She also obtained a Master’s Degree in City and Regional Planning from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1998. She is currently enrolled in an Executive Doctorate program in Higher Education Management at the University of Pennsylvania and will receive an Ed.D. in August 2020. Her dissertation research focused on board governance at Historically Black Colleges and Universities. Ivy credits her academic success to the strong foundation, faith, and values instilled in her by her mother, a North Carolina native, who never had the chance to pursue her educational dreams.
While serving as Mayor and supporting the UNCF, Taylor joined the Board of Trustees for Huston-Tillotson University, an HBCU in Austin, Texas. This sparked additional interest in higher education and supporting HBCUs. She is also on the board of the University of the Incarnate Word in San Antonio, a minority-serving institution. Taylor is committed to changing lives, improving communities and reducing economic inequality through working in higher education.
She currently works as a consultant with J.L. Powers and Associates. She relishes time with her family, which includes her husband of 20 years, Rodney and her daughter, Morgan, a high school student.
Dr. David A. Thomas
Dr. David A. Thomas is the 12th president of Morehouse College. Under his administration, the college raised $107 million last fiscal year—a giving total that is higher than any other president in the history of the college. A visionary leader, Dr. Thomas is working to make Morehouse one of the top liberal arts colleges in the country.
He has more than 30 years of experience in the business of higher education and is nationally respected as an expert in organizational change. He has served as the former dean of Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business, and as a former business school professor at Harvard University and the University of Pennsylvania.
Dr. Thomas is leading dynamic changes at Morehouse, which is mission-driven to produce leaders committed to community service. Under his guidance, the college has emerged as a national innovator in STEM education, has expanded its online class offerings from nine to more than 300 courses, and has increased its profile as the national epicenter for thought leadership on civil rights.
Dr. Thomas has used his platform as president of Morehouse to speak out against injustice as the nation faces two pandemics—COVID-19 and the persistence of systemic racism. He believes that Morehouse has a responsibility to help the nation to address the inequities caused by institutional racism, which have created disparities in income, employment, health, housing and educational opportunities for people of African descent.
Dr. Thomas has a doctoral degree in organizational behavior studies and a master of philosophy degree in organizational behavior, both from Yale University. He also has a master’s degree in organizational psychology from Columbia University and a bachelor of administrative sciences degree from Yale College. He is the co-author of three books.
Dr. Dwaun J. Warmack
Dr. Dwaun J. Warmack is the ninth president of Claflin University. Warmack comes to Claflin after serving as president of Harris-Stowe State University and at the time of his appointment was one of the youngest serving presidents of a four-year institution in the nation. Warmack brings more than 20 years of progressive administrative experience in higher education at five distinct higher education institutions. Dr. Warmack provided leadership to more than 450 full and part-time faculty and staff and oversaw a budget in excess of $32 million. After his arrival in 2014, Harris-Stowe witnessed a transformation, unheralded in its 160-year history. Dr. Warmack shepherd more than $15 million in external funding to the institution, including a $5 million grant, the largest in the institution’s history. He cultivated more than 16 partnerships and collaborations with Fortune 500 companies, regional organizations and other higher education institutions to strengthen Harris-Stowe’s infrastructure. During Dr. Warmack’s tenure, Harris-Stowe witnessed its highest gains in student enrollment in decades, posting the highest percentage enrollment increases among Missouri’s public institutions for two consecutive years. Additionally, as part of the institutional strategic plan that he spearheaded, the institution embarked on an ambitious goal of expanding its academic offerings. As a result, degrees, minors, and certificate programs have increased by more than 40 percent. These includes expanding liberal arts and business degrees and Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics disciplines (STEM). As a result of his executive leadership to transform the curricular and co-curricular enterprises at Harris-Stowe, the institution is ranked regionally and nationally in various publications and online journals with U.S. News and World Report ranking Harris-Stowe as one of the best HBCU’s and Midwest Universities in the United States. Dr. Warmack’s success at Harris-Stowe has captured national acclaim cumulating with a front-page article in the Chronicle for Higher Education, features in the New York Times, the Detroit Free Press and appearances on CNN, Al Jazeera America, C-SPAN and NPR.
He is considered a scholar-practitioner and possesses a wealth of experience in program design, faculty, student development, assessment and accreditation. Dr. Warmack’s trajectory in higher education has been extraordinary. Prior to his appointment as president of Harris-Stowe, he served as the senior vice president, administration and student services at Bethune-Cookman University overseeing a staff of 170. His successes include oversight of a multi-million dollar renovation of the institution’s residence halls. Prior to his tenure at Bethune-Cookman, he was the associate dean of students at Rhodes College in Memphis, where he had oversight of student affairs including judicial affairs, student activities, Greek life, new student and parent orientation and multicultural affairs. Warmack has also held positions at Western Carolina University in Cullowhee, N.C., and Delta State University.
Dr. Warmack provides a brand of leadership that is characterized by an unqualified insistence on data driven decision-making and a commitment to higher education’s current best practices. A visionary with a unique understanding and appreciation for today’s millennial students, he is committed to academic integration and the holistic development of students. Warmack is committed to developing programs that promote diversity, pluralism and cultural competency. Throughout his career, he has championed inclusion, academic excellence and the retention of underrepresented students. Over the years he has presented more than 120 diversity and leadership presentations and workshops to an array of individuals and groups.
To bolster his executive fortes, Dr. Warmack has participated in a variety of professional development opportunities including the American Association of State Colleges and Universities’ (AASCU), Millennium Leadership Initiative (MLI), and Hampton University’s “On The Road to the Presidency: Executive Leadership Summit.”
Dr. Warmack was named the Delta State University “Black Alumnus of the Year” and was inducted into the institution’s Hall of Fame. Other awards and recognitions for his work in higher education and the community include but not limited to, Delux Magazine Power 100 “Trailblazer Award” Recipient, St. Louis Business Journal “40 under 40”, St. Louis American “Salute to Excellence Young Leader Award”, The Rickey Smiley Foundation “Trailblazer Award”, Who’s Who in Color Most Intriguing People and “Ten Most Dominant HBCU Leaders of 2018.”
Dr. Warmack’s past board memberships include Cortex Innovation Community, the Saint Louis Science Center, the St. Louis Regional Chamber, St. Louis Muny, the Greater St. Louis Area Council Boy Scouts of America, the United Way of Greater St. Louis, Southern Association for College Student Affairs (SACSA) Foundation, and the Alumni Board of Directors for Delta State University. He is a peer reviewer with the Higher Learning Commission, the largest regional accreditation body in the United States.
Dr. Warmack earned a bachelor’s degree in education and master’s degree in sociology from Delta State University. He earned his doctorate in educational leadership with a specialization in higher education from Union University in Jackson, Tennessee, and his post-doctoral studies in educational leadership at Harvard University School of Education.
Dr. Warmack is married to LaKisha Warmack and they have one daughter, Morgan.