September 23, 2021

Dear Spelman community,

I am writing to provide you with an update following the recent retirement announcement of Mary Schmidt Campbell, Ph.D., president of Spelman College.

The Board extends our gratitude and admiration for Dr. Campbell and her many accomplishments, and recognizes the critical role she played in ensuring the College’s success on many fronts. Throughout the academic year, we will share ways for the Spelman community to join us in expressing our heartfelt appreciation for all that Dr. Campbell has done during her time at the College.

In addition to celebrating Dr. Campbell’s many accomplishments, we will conduct a search for her successor – one of our most important roles as the fiduciary body of Spelman. Dr. Campbell has paved a tremendous pathway for the 11th president, and we are committed to finding the ideal person to lead the College in our next exciting chapter, while ensuring a seamless transition for our Spelman sisters, faculty and staff.

To that end, I am pleased to announce the leadership and membership of the Presidential Search Committee. Trustee Kaye Foster, senior advisor and executive coach at the Boston Consulting Group, will chair the committee and Trustee Gena Ashe, C’83, chief legal officer and corporate secretary at Anterix, serves as co-chair.

The committee also includes:
Kaye Foster, chair
Gena Ashe, C'83, co-chair
Mentewab Alayew, faculty
Ted Aronson, trustee
Karen Brakke, faculty trustee
Susan Dunn, trustee
Elizabeth Gowans, C'2023, student trustee
Carmen Harris, C'2002, alumna trustee
Vicki Palmer, community leader

Larry Schall, trustee
Suzanne Shank, trustee
Ronda Stryker, trustee
Colleen Taylor, C'90, trustee
Dimeji Togunde, Ph.D., staff
Kathy Waller, trustee
Angela Farris Watkins, Ph.D., C'86, faculty
Roz Brewer, C'86, ex officio
Gwen Norton, ex officio

The committee membership draws on the significant talent and experiences of trustees, faculty, staff, students, alumnae and community leaders. It was critical that we identify individuals willing to make a considerable time commitment and adhere to a strict code of confidentiality. Brief biographical statements are posted on the presidential search webpage.

The PSC will conduct a comprehensive national search to identify and interview the most qualified candidates and make recommendations to the Board of Trustees. The Board of Trustees will make the final decision on electing the new president. The PSC will be supported by Storbeck Search, a member of Diversified Search Group, a nationally recognized executive firm with significant experience in supporting higher education executive searches.

The committee will meet for the first time next month. There will be several opportunities for you to offer your comments and suggestions to the committee. Trustee Kaye Foster will soon provide you all with more detailed information on opportunities to participate in the search process. We look forward to receiving your insights on the key strategic issues and priorities that should be on the agenda of the 11th president of Spelman.

During this time, it is also essential that we develop a comprehensive transition plan to honor Dr. Campbell’s accomplishments and prepare to onboard an incoming president. I am happy to announce that Trustees Helen Smith Price, C’79, and Rick Legon have agreed to lead these efforts as co-chairs of the Presidential Transition Committee. They will work closely with members of the Board, faculty leaders and members of the senior team to ensure a seamless transfer of leadership of the College and to position the new president for early success.

We thank Dr. Campbell once again for her servant leadership at Spelman and look forward to continuing to work with her throughout this academic year to ensure the next president is equipped to carry the baton forward.

Rosalind G. Brewer, C ’84
Chair, Spelman College Board of Trustees

Spelman College
350 Spelman Lane
Atlanta, GA 30314

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