Amistad Names Kara Olidge New Executive Director

karaolidgeKara Tunica Olidge has replaced Leon Hampton, who retired in June, as the executive director of the Amistad Research Center.

Olidge, who earned her bachelor’s degree from Spelman College in philosophy and art history, her master’s degree in arts administration from the University of New Orleans and her doctorate in educational leadership from State University of New York (SUNY) at Buffalo, is the first woman to serve as executive director of the center since its establishment on the campus of Fisk University in 1966.

Prior to joining Amistad, the New Orleans native served as deputy director of the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture in New York City and as the director of the Hetrick-Martin Institute for LGBTQ youth in Newark, New Jersey. While in graduate school at the University of New Orleans, she served as the director of education for the Shakespeare Festival at Tulane and as a visual art curator at the Amistad Research Center.

SUS Names New System President/Chancellor

Ray_L_BeltonThe Southern University System Board of Supervisors recently named Ray L. Belton President and Chancellor of the SU System.

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 which I remain indebted. As president and chancellor of the Southern University System, I will give my all,” said Belton. “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.

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