Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Dr. Betty Overton-Adkins Elected Chair of UI&U Board of Trustees

CINCINNATI – Union Institute & University (UI&U), a private, non-profit university headquartered in Cincinnati today announced that Betty Overton-Adkins, vice president for academic affairs at Spring Arbor University near Jackson, MI, has been named Chair of Union Institute & University’s Board of Trustees.

“Dr. Betty J. Overton-Adkins is one of the most creative minds in higher education today,” said UI&U President Roger H. Sublett, Ph.D. “Through her vast experience in a wide range of university settings, her commitment to providing learning and mentorship opportunities in innovative environments based on adult learning principles, and her extensive work with foundation programming in higher education, Betty's influence can be seen in historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs), Native American tribal colleges, Hispanic-serving institutions and associations, as well as mainstream universities and colleges.”

A native of Jacksonville, FL, Dr. Overton-Adkins is a lifelong educator who began her career as a public school teacher. She has worked at both public and private colleges and universities as a faculty member, department chair, and graduate dean. At Spring Arbor University, she is responsible for all aspects of the graduate and undergraduate academic programs and faculty development, and also serves as professor of English.

Dr. Overton-Adkins previously served for 10 years as director of higher education programs for the W.K. Kellogg Foundation. Prior to her tenure at the Kellogg Foundation, Dr. Overton-Adkins was dean of the Graduate School at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, where she oversaw more than 20 graduate programs and the Office of Research and Sponsored Programs. She has also been a faculty member and administrator at Fisk University, Tennessee State University, and Nashville State Technical Institute. She currently serves as a Distinguished Visiting Professor at the Clinton School for Public Service in Little Rock, AR.

For more than two decades Dr. Overton-Adkins has served on numerous higher education professional and credentialing boards and committees, including her present positions on the board of the American Association of Higher Education, and as a commissioner of the Higher Learning Commission, North Central Association of Colleges and Universities. She has served on the boards of the Council of Graduate Schools, and the Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education (FIPSE). She has written or co-authored numerous papers and articles, and currently serves on the editorial board of Change Magazine.

Dr. Overton-Adkins earned her Ph.D. in educational leadership from George Peabody College of Vanderbilt University. She received her baccalaureate and master’s degrees in English from Tennessee State University. In 1990 she attended the Institute for Educational Management at Harvard University, and returned to Harvard in 1996 as a visiting faculty fellow at the W.E.B. Dubois Research Institute. Her extensive community service roles include board member for the Quality Board of Foote Hospital in Jackson, Michigan, Sojourner House, Detroit; founder of Women of Color United Against Domestic Violence, Little Rock; governor's appointee to the Arkansas Science and Technology Authority; and former national board member of Bread for the World.

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