Dr. George Eugene Ross became the fourteenth president of Central Michigan University on March 1, 2010.
Dr. Ross’ leadership of Michigan’s fourth largest university and a top-100 university in the nation based on enrollment follows more than 22 years of higher education leadership and management guided by his strong belief in the transformative power of higher education.
Dedicated to student success and academic excellence with a commitment to transparency, Dr. Ross brings a strong financial and educational background; a thorough understanding of CMU’s financial resources, operations and cultural environment; and a vision to enhance the growth, rich tradition and student-centered focus that have been CMU’s hallmark for more than 120 years.
Prior to assuming the CMU presidency, Dr. Ross served as President of Alcorn State University, founded in 1871 as the nation’s first public historically Black land-grant university. Before his appointment as president, he held the positions of Vice President for Finance and Administrative Services at Central Michigan University, Executive Vice President at Clark Atlanta University, Executive Vice Chancellor at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, and Vice President for Business Affairs at Tuskegee University.
His focus on student success is reflected in Dr. Ross’ continued engagement in both traditional and nontraditional student teaching and learning. He has held adjunct and associate professor ranks teaching at the undergraduate and graduate levels. He also has developed continuing education materials and taught professional development courses for various professional organizations, including the National Association of College and University Business Officers, the Southern Association of College and University Business Officers, and the Southern Education Foundation.
As a nationally recognized leader in higher education, Dr. Ross has presented seminars, workshops and lectures in the areas of higher education leadership, budget, finance and administration to a number of universities and national organizations including the Association of Public and Land-Grant Universities, the American Association of State Colleges and Universities, and the Summer Institute for Women in Higher Education at Bryn Mawr College.
As a strong proponent of civic engagement and giving back to his community, Dr. Ross has served on a number of local, statewide and regional planning and economic development boards, countywide strategic planning committees, neighborhood development organizations, and Chambers of Commerce.
In addition, he has served on the Board of Trustees of Bryan College and the Board of Directors of the Southern Association of College and University Business Officers.
A certified public accountant, Dr. Ross held positions in corporate and nonprofit finance and management prior to his work in higher education. He earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in business administration from Michigan State University, a Ph.D. in higher education administration from the University of Alabama, and completed postdoctoral studies at Harvard University.
Dr. Ross and his wife, Elizabeth, have two adult daughters, Roshaunda and Joronda.