Alcorn’s Nichols appointed to 2013-2014 Delta Leadership Institute Executive Academy

Lorman, Miss. (November 22, 2013) – Alcorn State University’s Assistant Vice President for Educational and Community Partnerships, Dr. Ruth R. Nichols has been appointed by Governor Phil Bryant as a member of the 2013-2014 Delta Leadership Institute Executive Academy.

“This appointment recognizes Nichols as a proven Alcorn community development advocate and leader in our state,” says Vice President for Media and University Relations Clara Ross Stamps.

Congress established the Delta Regional Authority in 2000 to enhance economic development and improve the lives of the 10 million people who live in the 252 counties and parishes that comprise the eight-state Delta region. The Delta Leadership Institute Executive Academy is a yearlong program that prepares regional leaders to collaborate on addressing the region’s most pressing problems, including healthcare, education, transportation, information technology, clean technology, small business development and economic development.

Nichols will be one out of a class of 50 who meet seven times each year. The class explores issues in the Delta region and travels to Washington, D.C. to learn about policy development and advocacy.

This year, the Delta Regional Authority is launching a three-entity collaboration among the University of Mississippi’s McLean Institute for Public Service and Community Engagement, Arkansas State University’s Delta Center for Economic Development and the Social Science Research Lab at the University of Louisiana at Monroe.

Nichols joined the Alcorn staff in 2009. She began her education career teaching kindergarten in Vidalia, Louisiana, and she’s spent most of her 30-year education career in university leadership roles.

She earned degrees from Copiah-Lincoln Community College, the University of Southern Mississippi and Clemson University. Before coming to Alcorn, she held several high-ranking positions at North Georgia Technical College. In her role at Alcorn, Nichols identifies opportunities and leads community and economic development initiatives that actively engage Alcorn faculty, staff, students, alumni and its resources to positively impact the prosperity of our citizens and generate economic progress.

“I am truly proud to represent Alcorn in the 2014 Delta Leadership Institute,” said Nichols. “The initial session of DLI was both eye-opening and encouraging. As a group we were made intentionally aware of the collective differences we could make in the Delta region. As individuals, we were encouraged to understand the power of educated, informed and dedicated leaders in our home institutions and communities. With the support of Delta Regional Authority, ordinary communities can tap into the resources and knowledge needed to achieve extraordinary results.”


Alcorn State University is a premier comprehensive land-grant university that develops diverse students into globally competitive leaders, and applies scientific research through collaborative partnerships that benefit the surrounding communities, state, nation, and world.