Howard University has its next president.
Ben Vinson III, PhD has been tabbed as the 18th president of Howard University. He will replace Dr. Wayne A.I. Frederick, who announced last year that he would be stepping down from his post.
“Howard’s incredible legacy, its remarkable trajectory, combined with the fine talent of its faculty and staff, situate Howard at the uppermost echelons of higher education,” Vinson says. “I look forward to returning to the DMV, which I consider home, and working with the broader campus community to fortify Howard and help build upon its incredible tradition of delivering excellence, truth, and service to greater humanity.”
Vinson comes to Howard after serving as provost and executive vice president at Case Western Reserve University where he was responsible for all facets of academic and university research.
On May 1, the Howard University Board of Trustees unanimously voted to appoint Vinson as president of the University.
“Both his academic research and the initiatives he’s championed as a higher education leader have demonstrated his commitment to elevating the diversity of experiences of people of the African diaspora – a commitment that aligns well with Howard University’s mission and vision,” says Laurence C. Morse, chair of the board.
Vinson’s appointment is the culmination of a rigorous and comprehensive 12-month search, led by the board-appointed presidential search committee and assisted by executive search firm Isaacson Miller. The entire Howard community was invited to participate in this process through a series of listening sessions conducted throughout 2022, as well as an opportunity to provide feedback, suggestions, and questions related to the search, including recommending potential candidates.
“His vast experience and proven track record in academic leadership make him the ideal candidate to lead our esteemed institution into the future,” says Dr. Wayne A. I. Frederick, M.D., MBA, president of Howard University. “I am confident that Howard will continue to thrive under his guidance as a premier center for higher learning and innovation.”
Unlike his predecessor, Dr. Frederick, Dr. Vinson is neither a Howard University alumnus nor an HBCU graduate at all.
Vinson earned a bachelor’s degree from Dartmouth College with a double major in history and classical studies, summa cum laude, and a doctorate in Latin American history, with distinction, from Columbia University. He has been awarded fellowships from the Fulbright Commission; National Humanities Center; Social Science Research Council; University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill; and the Ford, Rockefeller, and Mellon foundation.