The search for a new president to lead Delaware State University will be an intense one.
The question of who will replace Harry Williams is just too soon for Wilma Mishoe who chairs DSU’s board of directors to answer. She said the decision could take up to a year.
“We will be meeting this week and decide what that search looks like and what direction we want to take,” Mishoe said. “I’m sure that the university will be in a good place, it already is. He leaves us in a good place and we’re going to continue right on in that same vain.”
Williams announced Monday he’s leaving DSU after a decade with the college to take on the role of CEO and president of the Thurgood Marshall College Fund. His announcement comes after he received one of the highest ranking awards the organization could bestow upon him in Washington, D.C. last night. Williams was awarded the Educational Leadership Award at the TMCF 30th Anniversary Awards Gala.
He’s credited for increasing enrollment by 22 percent at DSU and establishing partnerships with institutions of higher learning in other countries including Africa and China.
“It’s very humbling, but I’m not receiving it by myself, this is Delaware State’s award. I’m being recognized, but Delaware State is going to be lifted up because of the work we’ve been able to do these past few years here,” Williams said.
Congresswoman Lisa Blunt Rochester introduced Williams and was joined at the event by many other Delaware leaders including Senator Chris Coons.
“I am very happy for President Williams that he is going on to lead the Thurgood Marshall College Fund. This is one of our nation’s most important education funds. It is an essential part of funding higher education at HBCU’s across the country and it strikes me as a logical next step after his very successful leadership at Delaware State University,” Coons said.
Meanwhile, Mishoe vowed that the next president will be carefully chosen because the university is near and dear to her heart.
“You know I grew up on that campus years ago, as a child of a college president. My father was the president of Delaware State College at the time for 27 years,” said Mishoe, the daughter of Luna Mishoe. “I’ve observed an awful lot of change at that institution and it doesn’t have the same meaning to other people because they haven’t experienced it the way that I have.”
Williams’ departure from DSU is effective January 2018. The move means Williams will be a part of many colleges and still a familiar face to the Hornet family.
“This is a ‘see you later,’ mainly because in my role as a new president and CEO of the Thurgood Marshall College Fund I represent more than 47 public HBCU’s, more than 300,000 students attending these prestigious institutions, my job will be to advocate and go around the country promoting these institutions and Delaware State is in that category,” Williams said.