Reginald S. Avery Appointed President of Coppin State University
Reginald S. Avery
Adelphi, Md. (September 25, 2007)-Clifford M. Kendall, chair
of the University System of
Maryland (USM) Board of Regents, today announced the appointment of
Avery as president of Coppin State University (CSU). Avery is currently
vice chancellor for academic affairs at the University of South
Carolina Upstate, part of the University of South Carolina system. He
will join CSU as president in early January
"We are very pleased to
welcome Dr. Avery as president of Coppin," said Chairman Kendall. "He has a proven
track record of success in several key areas, including enhancing academic
support services, improving student retention and graduation rates, attracting
outside funding, and encouraging business and community partnerships. The board
is confident that Dr. Avery's experience will serve the students, faculty, and
staff of Coppin State; Baltimore City; and the State of Maryland well in the
"I consider it an honor and
privilege to have been selected as the next president of Coppin State University," said Avery. "I will work hard to embrace and
protect the university's important and historic mission, while at the same time
collaborate with campus constituencies to advance excellence and effectiveness
in every aspect, including academic programs, teaching and learning, student
retention and progression, fiscal and budgetary matters, community outreach,
institutional and program accreditations, and global initiatives. Coppin is an
outstanding university that is poised for greatness and I am fortunate to be a
part of its future development."
Avery has served as executive
vice chancellor for academic affairs at the University of South Carolina Upstate since 2003. In 2006-07, he served as the
institution's acting chancellor while the chancellor was on sabbatical. The
University of South Carolina (USC) Upstate, located in Spartanburg, is a senior comprehensive public institution of the
USC system. It enrolls more than 4,800 undergraduate and graduate students and
offers 40 bachelor's and master's programs.
While at the university,
Avery's accomplishments included overseeing increases in the number of faculty
and full-time students as well as in the number of opportunities for faculty
and students to study abroad; increasing collaborations and partnerships with
business and industry, non-profit organizations, schools, and health facilities,
all to benefit both the university and region; implementing the Metropolitan
Studies Institute as the university's primary educational outreach; and
securing key outside funding grants. He also conceived and developed the Center
for Undergraduate Research.
"I am confident that Dr.
Avery will provide superb leadership for Coppin," said USM Chancellor William
E. Kirwan. "He is clearly committed to students' academic success and to recruiting
and retaining strong faculty and staff. He is collaborative in his leadership
approach, and he fully understands the importance of the campus working in
partnership with the region it serves."
"I also want to express my
deep gratitude and appreciation to the presidential search-and-screen committee,"
Kirwan said. "Under the able and dedicated leadership of Leronia Josey, a
Baltimore attorney and former member of the USM Board of Regents, the committee
of students, faculty, staff, alumni, and community representatives did an
outstanding job of carrying out an effective and transparent eight-month process
to identify an impressive pool of candidates."
Avery brings more than 34
years of higher education experience to the CSU presidency. Prior to his
current position, he served as provost at Alma College in Michigan from 2000 to 2003. He also served as vice president
for academic affairs at Kentucky State University. Earlier, Avery founded and served as the first dean
of the School of Professional Programs at Benedict College in South Carolina. And he has served on the faculty of several
institutions, including the University of Tennessee and the University of Arkansas at Little
In service to the greater
higher education community, Avery is a member of the Advisory Committee on
Academic Programs for South
Commission on Higher Education and is an institutional representative of the
Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. Very active in his community,
Avery serves on several boards, including those of the Spartanburg Area Chamber
of Commerce, Spartanburg Housing Authority, Urban League of the Upstate, and
Community Advisory Board of BMW Automotive.
Avery holds a Ph.D. from the
Florence Heller School of Social Policy and Management at Brandeis
University, an M.S.W. from the George Williams College of Aurora
University, and a B.S. in sociology from North Carolina A&T State
University. He and his wife Esther have three adult children and
Avery will succeed Stanley
Battle, who left Coppin State in early June to become president of North
Carolina A&T State University. Since Battle's departure, Sadie Gregory, CSU's provost, has served
as interim president. Said USM Chancellor Kirwan: "Dr. Gregory is serving ably
as both interim president and provost. Her dedication to Coppin is
unquestionable. The regents and I deeply appreciate her willingness to carry
out the responsibilities of both positions during this period of transition."
A historically black,
four-year university in Baltimore,
Coppin State University is one of the 13 institutions of the University
System of Maryland. CSU offers 23 undergraduate and 10 graduate-degree majors
in the liberal arts and sciences, business, education, and nursing. The
university currently enrolls some 4,000 undergraduate and graduate students.
Coppin has received numerous information technology awards and is recognized as
one of the nation's top campuses for wireless communications technology.
To learn more about Coppin State University, visit: www.coppin.edu.
Contact: Anne Moultrie