Former Plattsburgh State President to Become Grambling’s Seventh President – Mar 26, 2004
BATON ROUGE, La. – Horace Judson, the former president of Plattsburgh State University of New York, has been named the next president of Grambling State University.
The Board of Supervisors for the University of Louisiana System made its selection today after a four-month national search. Judson will assume the presidency on June 1.
Judson, a senior fellow at the American Association of State Colleges and Universities, said he and his wife, Gail, are looking forward to joining the Grambling family.
“We look forward with great anticipation to joining Grambling and the University of Louisiana System. We look forward to becoming citizens of the great state of Louisiana,” Judson said. He and his wife have three daughters.
Judson, 62, was one of three finalists for the position. He and the other contenders – Ramapo College of New Jersey President Rodney Smith and Winston-Salem State University Provost Melvin Johnson – interviewed for the position in open session here Thursday. They were among 49 higher education and business leaders who applied to lead the century’s old historically black university.
Judson received his doctorate in organic chemistry from Cornell University. He has served as a high-level administrator at California State University, Stanislaus and Morgan State University in Baltimore. A Florida native, he also served as an assistant professor at Bethune-Cookman College in Daytona Beach, Fla.
Judson has been credited with improving campus finances, diversity, retention and graduation rates, fundraising and sponsored research during his tenure at Plattsburgh.
Robert King, Chancellor of the State University of New York, cited Judson’s accomplishments and recommended him for the Grambling presidency.
“If you are looking for someone who can elevate the academic environment, grow research opportunities, raise philanthropic dollars and represent the campus to external constituencies, Jud can do all these things with distinction,” King said.
In recommending Judson to the Board, UL System President Sally Clausen cited Judson’s record at Plattsburgh, his strong references and experience at diverse campuses.
“Dr. Judson is an experienced and tested president with a fine academic background as a scholar and teacher whose leadership is marked with significant accomplishment.”
Over the past few years, Clausen and the UL System Board have worked closely with the Grambling administration to eliminate fiscal accountability and accreditation issues that plagued the university for years. The system and university met success in December when Grambling emerged from a two-year probation by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.
UL System Board Chair Mike Woods cited Judson’s financial management in expressing his satisfaction with Judson’s appointment.
“He had 16 years of budget cuts but never once ran a deficit. That’s a significant accomplishment,” Woods said.
Grambling alumni have played an active part in the selection of the new president.
Board member and Grambling alumnus Walter Rhodes asked all Grambling alumni in the audience to stand as a sign of solidarity as he made the motion for Judson to become the next Grambling president.
Grambling alumnus Mike Williams said he was pleased with Judson’s selection and called on all alumni to get even more involved in the future success of the university.
“Now’s not the time to walk away. The process is just beginning,” he said.
Grambling University National Alumni Association Washington D.C. Chapter President Alicia Williams said this is a “great day for Grambling.”
“I believe the appointment paves the way for Grambling to flourish to its full potential and fulfill its mission as an institution of higher learning,” she said. “I believe Grambling State University has a brighter future ahead.”
Williams also thanked the UL System Search Committee and Board Members for “their tireless efforts and the due diligence displayed in this selection process.”
Judson said he plans to visit the campus numerous times prior to assuming the presidency in June. He plans to meet with faculty, staff, students and the surrounding community as he transitions into his new role.
Founded in 1901 as a private industrial school to educate African-American citizens in north central Louisiana, Grambling is a comprehensive university offering undergraduate, graduate, professional and continuing education programs. Situated on a 383-acre campus, the historically black university has almost 5,000 students.
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