Ray Belton named SU System president and chancellor

After interviewing two finalists recommended by the Southern University System (SUS) President/Chancellor Search Committee, the SUS Board of Supervisors, Friday, June 12, 2015, named Ray L. Belton President and Chancellor of the SU System.

Belton and the other finalist, Ivory Toldson, participated in several listening sessions with faculty, staff, students, alumni and stakeholders, June 11, 2015, on the Southern Baton Rouge campus.

After interviewing Belton and Toldson, the SUS Board voted 13-1 to select the Shreveport native to lead the SU System and Baton Rouge campus.

In March 2015, the SUS Board made history when it voted to consolidate the System President and SU Baton Rouge Chancellor into one position.

Belton replaces SUS System President Ronald Mason Jr. who leaves June 30 to become president of the University of the District of Columbia.

The new president and chancellor, who will assume the position July 1, 2015, is familiar to Southern. He has served as chancellor of Southern University Shreveport (SUSLA) since 2000.

"It is an absolute honor to be afforded this occasion to serve this Board and to serve this institution to whom I remain indebted. As president and chancellor of the Southern University System, I will give my all," said Belton.

The newly elected president and chancellor added, "We will build a leadership team that will advance the evolution of this enterprise [Southern University System]. This enterprise will be known for its contributions to this state and to this nation."

Belton is a graduate of SUSLA and Southern University Baton Rouge. He has a master of arts in counseling from the University of Nebraska at Omaha and a doctor of philosophy in educational administration from the University of Texas at Austin.

SU Board Chairman Leon R. Tarver II thanked the SUS Board, and the 15-member search committee chaired by surgeon and former Board of Regents member Albert Sam, M.D.

"We are pleased with the outcome of the search for the SU System president/chancellor. The search committee’s work was expedient and exemplary. Today we welcome Dr. Ray Belton whose tenure will signal the beginning of the next era for the only HBCU system in America," said Tarver.

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