The sector is still working to comprehend the sudden departure of former Bethune-Cookman University President E. LaBrent Chrite, who this morning was announced as the new president of Bentley University in Massachusetts.
His departure has created a lot of questions within HBCU culture. Is Bethune-Cookman’s board really that bad? Are predominantly white institutions really that eager to recruit Black presidents to lead in a ‘Black Lives Matter’ era? Are HBCUs in a position to prevent any of this from happening?
The answers are complex at every level and vary from campus to campus. But for those who study leadership trends, it is easy to see which campuses and executives are on the verge of running their course of mutual investment.
Some presidents on this list will retire after successful tenures. Some will leave because they will be fired or non-renewed. Some will leave because they are ready to pursue new challenges affording more money or less stress, and most will leave because there is a growing uncertainty of what the historically Black enterprise will look like in life after COVID.
I won’t give the rationale or prediction for each president, but you can match the reasons for rolling out with your perceptions of their talent and value.
Makola Abdullah - Virginia State University
Roslyn Clark Artis - Benedict College
Ray Belton - Southern University
M. Christopher Brown II - Kentucky State University
James Clark - South Carolina State University
Walter Kimbrough - Dillard University
Harold Martin - North Carolina A&T State University
Elwood Robinson - Winston-Salem State University
Michael Sorrell - Paul Quinn College
David Wilson - Morgan State University