Mortimer H. Neufville Named President of Coppin State University
Adelphi, Md. (July 9,
2013) -- The University System of Maryland (USM) Board of Regents today
named Mortimer H. Neufville, Ph.D., the next president of Coppin State
University. He will serve a two-year term in the position, effective immediately
through June 30, 2015.
Neufville has served as interim president of Coppin State
University (CSU) since Jan. 23, 2013. His appointment as interim president
followed the news of former president Reginald Avery's announcement in October
2012 that he would resign his position at CSU, effective Jan. 22, 2013.
During his tenure as interim president, Neufville has played
a critical role in advancing the university's future while the Board of Regents
Special Review Committee conducted its thorough analysis on Coppin State. In
December 2012, the board established a committee to conduct a comprehensive
review of the university and develop strategies to increase student retention
and graduation rates, improve administrative operations and financial
stability, and build a culture focused on success.
In June 2013, the board approved an implementation plan for
the strategies recommended by the review committee. Neufville led the effort to
create the Implementation Plan, which the board approved unanimously.
The plan makes a
number of major recommendations centered on three major goals: 1) increase
student retention and graduation rates; 2) strengthen academic programs and
faculty; and 3) improve administrative operations and financial stability.
Neufville's steady leadership during a transitional time at Coppin State
University has been of great value. The board believes he is in a unique
position to oversee the Implementation Plan during these first two critical years,"
said James L. Shea, chair of the Board of Regents. "In approving the plan, the
board pledged to continue proactive oversight of Coppin and the Regents look
forward to working with Dr. Neufville."
includes more than 50 activities that address all three goals with proactive,
attainable and immediate actions to impact Coppin's efforts to grow enrollment,
improve administration and finance operations and restructure the academic
enterprise. Neufville will have the
primary responsibility for ensuring the plan is fully implemented.
Neufville is the ideal person to lead Coppin at this time in the institution's
development," said USM Chancellor William E. "Brit" Kirwan.
"Throughout the difficult task of assessing the university's strengths and
challenges, Dr. Neufville has brought great wisdom, insight and civility to the
process. His two-year commitment to lead Coppin State will provide the
continuity needed to ensure the Board's approved plan is successfully
implemented in full, which will enable the university to better serve its
community and the state."
Neufville previously served the USM in his role as interim
president of the University of Maryland Eastern Shore (UMES), for nearly a year
beginning Aug. 16, 2011 before Juliette B. Bell began her service as UMES
president in July, 2012.
"I am honored to accept the appointment as Coppin State
University's sixth president. The next two years provides an opportunity to
lead the actions set forth in the CSU Implementation Plan Report. I thank the
Chancellor and members of the Board of Regents for their confidence in me,"
Neufville said. "Coppin State University plays an important role in educating
and transforming the lives of many people in this community. I look forward to
working collaboratively with the campus community to continue achieving great
outcomes for Coppin State."
Neufville received his Ph.D. and M.S. degrees in animal
science from the University of Florida. In 2001, he was awarded the Honorary
Doctor of Science degree from Tuskegee University, from which he earned his
B.S. degree. The University of Florida honored him with its Distinguished
Alumnus Award in December 2001. He held several prominent positions during his
14 years at UMES in addition to vice president for academic affairs, including
dean of agricultural sciences and research director.
One of the 12 institutions of the University System of
Maryland, Coppin State is a historically black, four-year university offering
28 undergraduate majors and 12 graduate-degree programs in the liberal arts and
sciences, business, education, and nursing. The university has earned local,
national, and international recognition for its information technology efforts,
including being the first historically black university to receive the prestigious
Educause Award for Excellence in Networking. To learn more about Coppin, visit:
Contact: Mike Lurie