Claflin University trustees announced Monday that Dr. Dwaun J. Warmack has been selected to serve as the ninth president of the institution.
Warmack succeeds Dr. Henry Tisdale, who is retiring after 25 years as the head of the university.
“Dr. Warmack was unanimously chosen to lead Claflin University from a pool of highly qualified applicants,” board Chairman James K. Lehman said in a press release.
“We believe he will continue Claflin’s upward trajectory, keeping the university among the nation’s leading institutions of higher education. He brings a brand of leadership that is inclusive, transparent and inspires teamwork,” Lehman said.
Warmack has served as president of Harris-Stowe State University for the past five years. Harris-Stowe is an HBCU located in St. Louis, Missouri.
Claflin's press release says, “Under Dr. Warmack’s exemplary leadership, Harris-Stowe witnessed an institutional transformation, which is unparalleled in its 162-year history. He has shepherded more than $24 million in external funding to the institution, including a $5 million STEM grant, the largest in the school’s history. He cultivated more than 16 partnerships and collaborations with Fortune 500 companies, regional organizations and other higher education institutions to strengthen Harris-Stowe’s infrastructure.”
Prior to his years at Harris-Stowe State, Warmack served as the senior vice president of administration and student services at Bethune-Cookman University.
Warmack also served as associate dean of students at Rhodes College in Memphis, and also held positions at Western Carolina University in Cullowhee, N.C., and Delta State University, his alma mater.
“I am honored to lead one of the nation’s premier Historically Black College and Universities that has a tradition of producing visionary leaders and a proven track record devoted to student success,” Warmack said in the press release.
“My aspiration is to honor President Tisdale’s amazing legacy by continuing the Claflin standard as a beacon of excellence in higher education for future generations to come. I am humbled by the opportunity afforded me to carry the torch and to continue the growth and development of Claflin University as a dynamic and powerful center of scholarship, research, and education,” Warmack said.
The Delta State University alumnus earned a bachelor’s degree in education and a master’s degree in sociology from Delta State.
Warmack earned his doctorate in educational leadership with a specialization in higher education from Union University in Jackson, Tennessee. He has also completed post-doctoral work in educational leadership at Harvard University School of Education.
Over the years, Warmack has received a number of awards and special honors including being named HBCU Campaign Fund’s “Ten Most Dominant HBCU Leaders of 2018”, being named the East St. Louis Branch of the NAACP’s “Game Changer” in 2016, and being inducted in his alma mater’s “Hall of Fame” in 2014.
Warmack and his wife LaKisha have one daughter, Morgan.