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Oakwood University Constituency Elects Board, President for 2016-2021


By George Johnson Jr.
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Photo provided by Oakwood University.

Members of the Oakwood University Constituency met on April 17, 2016, for its quinquennial constituency session. The meeting was held in the McKee Business & Technology Complex on the campus of Oakwood University (OU). Themed “120 Years of Delivering on the Promise of Mission,” the members of the constituency met to receive reports, elect the Board of Trustees for 2016-2021, and approve amendments to the Articles and Bylaws of the Corporation.
During an executive session of the new Board of Trustees, Dr. Leslie N. Pollard was unanimously reelected as president of Oakwood University. Pollard was initially elected in 2010; election on April 17 commences Pollard’s second term as president.

“I am deeply humbled by the invitation to serve our university, because no individual is sufficient for these responsibilities. At a time when faith-based education is challenged by turbulent crosswinds, Oakwood continues to stand as a tower of spiritual commitment, academic excellence, and social consciousness. My deepest thanks are extended to our talented administrators, our dedicated faculty, our committed staff, and our inspiring students. Across the next five years, we will build our students a health and wellness center. We will launch cutting-edge academic programs. We will continue our move toward reducing institutional dependency on tuition as a means of primary revenue. And I personally plan to use the leadership lessons learned during the past five years to improve our institutional performance even more in the next five years,” said Pollard.
“The reelection of Dr. Pollard as president of Oakwood moves the university forward in its positive trajectory. He is a visionary, proactive, and energetic. I am deeply grateful that he continues to be at the helm,” said Dan Jackson, president of the Seventh-day Adventist Church in North American and chair of the Oakwood University Board of Trustees.
The following administrators were also unanimously reelected for the 2016-2021 term:
Sabrina Cotton, vice president for Financial Administration
David Knight, vice president for Student Services
Kisha Norris, executive director for Advancement & Development
Kirk Nugent, chief information officer
Prudence Pollard, vice president for Research & Faculty Development
Howard Weems, assistant to the president for Spiritual Life and senior chaplain
Tricia Penniecook, MD, MPH, current vice president for Academic Administration announced her intent to return to Costa Rica by May 31, 2016. Special appreciation was expressed for her year of service to Oakwood. The new vice president for Academic Administration, Karen Benn Marshall, Ed.D., was elected to fill the vacancy created by Penniecook’s departure.
New members were also brought onto the board, with considerable discussion being given to adding younger members in an effort to ensure that Oakwood remains connected to the voice and vision of younger alumni and current students.
Pollard expressed his appreciation to several individuals who helped to prepare for the meeting, including Timothy McDonald, Ed.D., recently retired provost and senior vice president.
A copy of the printed Constituency Report may be found at oakwood.edu.


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