Southern University at Shreveport (SUSLA) Chancellor Rodney Ellis recently announced plans to step down by the end of the year. Learn more about why he plans to leave and the plans now in the works for his successor in the article from Carolyn Roy at ArkLaTex news.

Credit: SUSLA

Chancellor Rodney Ellis is stepping down as chancellor of Southern University Shreveport at the end of the year.

According to a statement released late Monday afternoon by SUSLA, Ellis recently informed Southern University System President Ray L. Belton of his intent to resign his position effective December 31, 2021.

Ellis, who has served as chancellor of Southern University Shreveport (SUSLA) since 2016, has also requested to take personal leave until his effective resignation date to focus on personal and family matters.

“It has been an honor to serve the students and citizens of this great community and to work with the incredibly talented and dedicated team of faculty, staff, alumni, and community partners to advance SUSLA’s mission,” Ellis said in the statement.

Under Ellis’ leadership, SUSLA has seen historic levels of philanthropic support from individual, community and corporate partners.

“Dr. Ellis’ contributions to the university through innovative strategies to secure major partnerships and by leveraging public/private gifts have been transformational throughout the campus,” said Stephanie Rogers, chief advancement officer at SUSLA. “He has left an indelible footprint at SUSLA — one that will impact our students, our workforce and our overall community for years to come. We are grateful for his service.”

President Belton echoed sentiments about Ellis’ service to SUSLA.

“I would also like to thank Dr. Ellis for a tremendous display of leadership at Southern University Shreveport and in the surrounding community for the past five years,” Belton said. “Under his leadership, the campus has seen a significant expansion of associate degree programs and stackable credentials that are delivered across the system and indeed he leaves the Shreveport campus well-positioned for reaffirmation of accreditation at its decennial review next month. His contributions are felt throughout the university system and I have had the great pleasure of working with him during his notable tenure at SUSLA.”

According to the statement, Belton plans to visit the campus this week and meet with the members of the SUSLA community. 

Belton has tapped Vladimir Alexander Appeaning — current Southern University System vice president for strategic planning, policy and institutional effectiveness — to serve in an interim leadership role on the Shreveport campus effective immediately.

Appeaning’s public service career spans more than 22 years in higher education and state government. In addition to his role with the System, Appeaning also serves as vice chancellor for academic compliance and Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) accreditation liaison for Southern University and A&M College in Baton Rouge.

Additionally, he is an adjunct professor of public policy and administration in the Nelson Mandela College of Government and Social Sciences on the Baton Rouge campus.