South Carolina State University trustees unanimously approved a new contract with university President James E. Clark on Friday.
"The board values its working relationship with President Clark and this administration," board Chairman Rodney C. Jenkins said in a release.
"We are committed to working together and supporting this president so that we can complete our mission to make S.C. State University the best it can be,” he said. “It's so important that we keep our institution strong because S.C. State is the way forward for so many students who might otherwise not go to college."
The contract negotiated by Clark and the board members includes a two-year term with an option to extend for an additional two years based on Clark's achievement of a set of performance benchmarks that align with the university's strategic plan.
Clark will receive an annual salary of $195,000, as set by the State of South Carolina, plus benefits, including health and life insurance, annual leave, sick leave and an automobile.
The university will also provide $50,000 in a discretionary fund for the president's use in cultivating business and community partnerships, tickets to university athletic events and $25,000 to renovate certain university spaces.
Clark's contract term ends in June of 2022. The president and board will meet in January of 2022 to discuss an extension of the contract.
"President Clark's passion for this university has not waivered since his first day of service on the interim board," said Donnie Shell, vice chairman of the board. "He carries that same energy and passion into his role as president, and I look forward to continuing to work with him."
Clark was named the university's 12th president in 2016 after serving a one-year stint on a seven-member interim board appointed by the South Carolina legislature.
Clark said, "We have our sleeves already rolled up, and we are continuing the good work we started.
“Expect some major announcements very soon that will have a major positive impact on our institution. There are so many exciting things on the horizon for S.C. State, despite the challenges we faced with the onset of a global pandemic. We are preparing to welcome students back for the spring semester, and we are working hard to make sure their experience is a stellar one."