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President’s Leadership Institute

Sikes Hall at Clemson University, South Carolina

What is the President’s Leadership Institute?

The President’s Leadership Institute is a nine-month leadership development program that is designed to support and develop professional and personal leadership within a diverse and inclusive community of faculty and staff at Clemson University. The institute enables participants to build individual effectiveness, understand the power of critical thinking and communication, learn directly from President Jim Clements and embrace their own ability to lead within the Clemson community. Each cohort consists of 25 faculty and staff nominated by University leadership.

The President’s Leadership Institute is an exciting opportunity for emerging, high-potential, and high-performing members of the faculty and staff of Clemson University.  For more information, contact Kyra Lobbins at 773-909-4852 or klobbin@clemson.edu.

  • Goals of the President's Leadership Institute
    • Enable personal and professional growth for every participant.
    • Ensure high levels of familiarity and interaction among faculty and staff from all areas of the University.
    • Offer opportunities for dialogue and discussion on topics important to the state of our University and its environment and constituents.
    • Provide an in-depth, clearer understanding of the internal structure and unique characteristics of our University landscape.
    • Create dialogue and discussion on topics important to the state of our University and its constituents.
    • Explore issues and opportunities facing higher education in general and those specific to Clemson such as our mission, strategies, priorities, governance, stakeholders and internal/external relations.
    • Broaden perspectives of Clemson’s impact at a state, regional, national and international level.
    • Ensure strong University leadership for the future.
    • Improve the University’s overall performance.
  • PLI Develops Faculty and Staff Leaders

    The PLI is designed exclusively for Clemson University faculty and staff in order to enable them to become the next generation of leaders to inspire, innovate, influence and impact each other, the University and the world through:

    • Direct tutelage and mentorship from University leaders President Jim Clements, Chief of Staff Max Allen, and Provost Bob Jones.
    • Providing opportunities to learn and observe from visits to Clemson sites across the state such as CU-ICAR, the Center for Manufacturing Innovation and the MBA program in Greenville; Clemson University Restoration Institute and Design Center in Charleston; the Sandhills Research and Education Center in Columbia; and on-campus sites such as the 55 Exchange.
    • Presentations from outside leadership specialists in areas such as philanthropy, economic development, conflict resolution and government relations.
    • Team-building activities and accountabity groups.
    • Research and discussions of current issues and opportunities facing higher education in order to develop a deeper knowledge of leadership principles, a greater understanding of the University through exploration of issues and opportunities facing Clemson and higher education, and garner a broadened perspective of Clemson’s impact at a state, regional, national and international level.
  • Who can participate?

    Each cohort of the President’s Leadership Institute (PLI) comprises 25 faculty and staff members from across the University who demonstrate exceptional performance in their respective areas. Faculty are nominated by the college deans and/or the Provost; staff are nominated by the University vice-presidents or corresponding divisional heads or senior administrators of the non-academic units of the University. A selection committee reviews the nominations for the final cohort.

    Annual nominations for the cohort will be solicited in November.

  • What can I expect?

    During the nine-month program, the cohort meets meets once a month for an all-day session.

    Meetings take place at various locations on campus or in Greenville, Charleston or Columbia.

    Program participants should expect critical thinking, problem solving, self-analysis, exposure to new ideas, rigorous and healthy discussion on a myriad of topics, and high levels of fellowship and interaction with fellow classmates.

    Each meeting is built around a goal or theme with every presentation and activity built around increasing the groups’ ability to achieve this goal.

    Past sessions have included:

    • Dr. Rhondda Thomas presented her research on Clemson’s history in relation to African-Americans.
    • Provost Jones shared his career trajectory, how he learned new roles, lessons learned from moving into these roles and what a “day in the life of a provost” looks like.
    • Dr. Kenston Griffin from Dream Builders Communication, Inc. frequently works with the group on developing leadership techniques.
    • Accountability group members research a specific topic and present their work to the group.

    Potential future topics might include:

    • Clemson's history and character (land-grant, mission, governance model)
    • Clemson University as a business: what it takes to run a university and meet the needs of our constituents (finance, facilities, infrastructure, internal/external relations)
    • Clemson University as a municipality – keeping us safe (fire, police, EMS)
    • Personal leadership skills/team building/leadership styles
    • Conflict resolution
    • Economic development
    • Clemson's impact across South Carolina (Greenville, Columbia, Charleston, public service activities)
    • Student life
    • Government relations
    • College spotlights (deans, unique programs, overview of departments)
    • Issues in higher education/changes and trends in academia
    • Athletics (programs and facilities, compliance, recruiting, operations)
    • Strategic planning and university priorities
  • Timeline

    Nominations
    Annual nominations for the cohort will be solicited in November.
    Program runs from August through April of a given academic year.

    Each program includes:

    • Two overnight retreats (at program opening and closing)
    • Seven class days
    • Variety of “field trips” and special sessions to complement topics and curriculum
  • President's Leadership Institute Graduates

    Inaugural Cohort

    Mark Cothran
    Director, Governmental Relations

    Kimberly Poole
    Associate Dean of Students

    Winston Holton
    Field Coordinator, Call Me MISTER®

    Ann Marie Alexander
    Senior Director of Development, Development and Alumni Affairs

    Steve Duzan
    Associate Athletics Director of Academics

    Latoya Daniels
    Human Resources Manager

    La’Toya Ritter
    Accounting Fiscal Manager

    Stephanie Evans
    Program Coordinator, Student Services

    Jean McKendry
    Coordinator of Grant Development and Interdisciplinary Collaborations

    Rhonda Todd
    Administrative Coordinator, Office of Undergraduate Studies

    Uttiyo Raychaudhuri
    Director, Study Abroad

    Jessica Martin
    Director, Advising Center
    College of Architecture, Arts and Humanities

    Helen Steele
    Director, Office of Student Enrichment
    College of Business

    Khoa Dang Truong
    Associate Professor, Public Health Sciences
    College of Behavioral, Social and Health Sciences

    Andrew Wesolek
    Associate Librarian, University Libraries

    Julia Frugoli
    Professor, Associate Chair, Genetics and Biochemistry
    College of Science

    Nathan Smith
    Professor of Agribusiness Production
    Cooperative Extension Service

    Peter L. Laurence
    Associate Professor, School of Architecture
    College of Architecture, Arts and Humanities

    Sez Atamturktur
    Associate Professor, Civil Engineering
    College of Engineering, Computing and Applied Sciences

    Marieke Van Puymbroeck
    Associate Professor, Parks, Recreation and Tourism Management
    College of Behavioral, Social and Health Sciences

    Michelle Cook
    Associate Professor, Science Education
    College of Education

    Delphine Dean
    Associate Professor, Bioengineering
    College of Engineering, Computing and Applied Sciences

    Julie K. Northcutt
    Professor, Food, Nutrition and Packaging Sciences
    College of Agriculture, Forestry and Life Sciences
    Extension Program Team Leader, Food Safety and Nutrition Program
    Cooperative Extension Service

    Carl Hollingsworth
    Associate Professor, Accounting
    College of Business

    Leigh Haltiwanger
    Lecturer, Secondary MAT Program Coordinator
    College of Education

    Second-Year Cohort

    Beshah Ayalew, Ph.D.
    Professor of Automotive Engineering
    Graduate Program Coordinator
    College of Engineering, Computing and Applied Sciences

    Todd Barnette
    Interim Chief Facilities Officer
    Office of Executive Vice President, Finances, Operations and Facilities

    Jeffrey Brown
    Associate Dean of Students
    Division of Student Affairs

    Julia Brumaghim, Ph.D.
    Professor of Chemistry
    College of Science

    Beth Crocker
    Associate General Counsel
    Office of General Counsel

    Barry Garst, Ph.D.
    Associate Professor of Parks, Recreation And Tourism Management
    College of Behavioral, Social and Health Sciences

    Anne Grant
    Instruction Coordinator, Education Reference Librarian
    Cooper Library

    Christine Green
    Executive Director of University Marketing
    University Relations

    Patricia Guerra-Marcondes
    Research Associate, Food, Nutrition and Packaging Sciences
    College of Agriculture, Forestry and Life Sciences

    Shanika Holland
    Audits Manager
    Office of Executive Vice President, Finances, Operations and Facilities

    Tracy Kelly
    Administrative Coordinator
    College of Behavioral, Social and Health Sciences

    Deon Legette
    Regional Lead Agent, Midlands Region
    Clemson University Cooperative Extension

    Oliver Myers, Ph.D.
    Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering
    College of Engineering, Computing And Applied Sciences

    Jennifer Ogle, Ph.D.
    Associate Professor of Civil Engineering
    College of Engineering, Computing and Applied Sciences

    Margaret Owen
    Senior Academic Program Director
    Development snd Alumni Relations

    Matthew Powers, Ph.D.
    Associate Professor and Director of the Bachelor of Landscape Architecture Program
    College of Architecture, Arts and Humanities

    Vladimir Reukov, Ph.D.
    Research Assistant Professor of Bioengineering
    College of Engineering, Computing And Applied Science

    Joseph Ryan, Ph.D. 
    Stanzione Distinguished Professor of Clemson Life
    College of Education

    Kevin Stone
    Tac Chair, Systems Architect
    CCIT

    Kendra Stewart-Tillman, Ph.D.
    Director for Diversity and Inclusion
    Office of Inclusion and Equity, Gantt Multicultural Center

    Mary Von Kaenel, Ph.D.
    Director, Bridge to Clemson Program
    Division of Undergraduate Studies

    Kuang-Ching Wang, Ph.D.
    Associate Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering
    College of Engineering, Computing and Applied Sciences

    Patrick Warren, Ph.D. a
    Associate Professor of Economics
    College of Business

    Sarah White, Ph.D. 
    Associate Professor of Plant and Environmental Science
    College of Agriculture, Forestry and Life Sciences

    Kyle Young, Ph.D.
    Associate Athletic Director of Administration
    Department of Athletics


For questions or additional information, please contact Wil Brasington.