Coppin State University Provost Dr. Cynthia Jackson-Hammond will become the first female president of Central State University, the Ohio school has announced.

Only the eighth president in the historically Black university’s history, Jackson-Hammond follows in the footsteps of current president John W. Garland, who announced his retirement last year.

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“I am extremely thrilled and honored to be named the next president of Central State University. This institution has a 125-year history of academic excellence and transforming the lives of students,” Jackson-Hammond told HBCU Digest.

“I look forward to joining the campus community of administrators, faculty, staff, alumni, and students to continue this great legacy and lead the University toward meeting the needs of an ever-changing society and a global future.”

Located in Wilberforce, Ohio, Central State University includes a student body of approximately 2,800.

Jackson-Hammond earned her bachelor’s degree from Grambling State University prior to receiving a Masters of Education from University of Louisiana, Monroe. Jackson-Hammond returned to Grambling State University to earn Ph.D. in education.

As provost and vice president of academic affairs at Coppin State University, Jackson-Hammond was responsible for reforming the General Education curriculum, creating the Center for Undergraduate Research, and furthering the development of the First-year Experience Program.

After having topped an impressive list of 51 national candidates, Jackson-Hammond will officially take office July 1.

“We are very excited about our selection,” Gary Dowdell, chair of the Central State University Board of Trustees, said in a statement. “Dr. Cynthia Jackson-Hammond has a demonstrated leadership background and comes to Central State University at a time when we are poised to make great strides in building for the future.”

Jackson-Hammond is married to Dr. James Eric Hammond Sr., and has three children, James Eric Jr., Christopher Adam, and Erin Jenea.