Board announces search committee for president-chancellor 

The Southern University Board of Supervisors today announced the search committee for the position of president-chancellor of the Southern University System and Southern University and A&M College. The committee, a diverse group of stakeholders, will assist the Board in selecting a replacement for retiring President-Chancellor Ray L. Belton.  


Belton announced in July his plans to retire effective Fall 2022. 


The search committee will screen applicants and select finalists for the position to be considered by the SU Board of Supervisors. 


The members of the committee are: 



  • Tim Barfield, president of CSRS Inc. 
  • Alfred Harrell, CEO of the Southern University System Foundation 


  • Gayle Benson, owner of the New Orleans Saints and New Orleans Pelicans 
  • Sandra Brown, dean of the College of Nursing and Allied Health at Southern University and A&M College 
  • Nzhada Harris, president of the Student Bar Association at Southern University Law Center 
  • Lee Jackson, chairman and CEO of Jackson Offshore Operations LLC 
  • Irving Matthews, president of The Matthews Automotive Group 
  • Cynthia Ramirez, professor and president of the faculty senate at Southern University at New Orleans 
  • LaQuitta Thomas, national president of the Southern University Alumni Federation 
  • Warner Thomas, president and CEO of Ochsner Health  
  • Tiffany Varner, director of nursing at Southern University at Shreveport 


Ex - Officio Members: 

  • Domoine D. Rutledge, chairman of the Southern University Board of Supervisors 
  • Ed Shorty, vice chairman of the Southern University Board of Supervisors 


"I’m pleased to have a very diverse group of well-respected stakeholders to assist the Board in selecting a new leader for the Southern University System," Rutledge said. "This task, in my opinion, dwarfs all others allotted to our charge as a Board, and I wanted new faces, new thoughts, and new ideas such that we can write a new and compelling narrative going forward." 


About the Southern University System
The Southern University System was created in 1974 by constitutional mandate, which fashioned it into the nation’s only historically black 1890 Land-Grant University System. Presently, the System is composed of five institutions: Southern University and Agricultural and Mechanical College at Baton Rouge (est. 1880), Southern University Law Center (est. 1947), Southern University at New Orleans (est. 1956), Southern University at Shreveport (est. 1964), and the Southern University Cooperative Extension Program (est. 1972), which became the fifth component of the System in 2001 and is now named Southern University Agricultural Research and Extension Center 


This website uses cookies to ensure site visitors get the best experience on our website. By continuing to use this site, you accept our use of cookies and Privacy Statement. To find out more, please visit Southern University's Privacy Statement.