Kenneth Long Named 14th President of East Stroudsburg University
Posted by: admin on November 2, 2022, 2 Comments
The Board of Governors of the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education (PASSHE) today unanimously selected Kenneth Long, M.B.A. to serve as the 14th president of East Stroudsburg University of Pennsylvania.
“As interim president, President Long has demonstrated that he is the right person to lead the university forward,” said Cindy Shapira, Board Chair. “He helped to guide ESU through the uncertainty of the pandemic and is committed to working with students, faculty and staff toward an exciting future that continues to open doors of opportunity for students of all ages and strengthens the workforce of Pennsylvania.”
Long has served as interim president since July 2020, upon the retirement of Marcia G. Welsh, Ph.D. to lead the institution during the difficult times of the pandemic and appointment of a new president. He had previously served as the university’s vice president of administration and finance and chief financial officer since 2013, after serving five years as assistant vice president of administration and finance at Kutztown University. In 2012, he also worked as interim vice president for finance and administration at Cheyney University in a loaned executive capacity. Long, who serves on various boards within the community and region, also serves on the executive board, as treasurer, for the Eastern Association of College and University Business Officers (EACUBO).
Long will become the first African American president of East Stroudsburg University and brings over 35 years of leadership and management experience in higher education, including executive-level experience at public, research, medical and regional institutions. He is being appointed after an extensive national search, and will assume his new role immediately.
“As the ESU leader for the past two years, Ken brings both innovation and stability to the university,” said Chancellor Daniel Greenstein. “He is committed to listening to all voices and to the success of all students. His tremendous experience at ESU and the State System, combined with his engagement with the community, will benefit the university and the region. I look forward to continuing to work with him.”
Prior to joining the State System, Long held positions at the University of Toledo and DeVry University, where he started his higher education career in 1987. He earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in math and political science from Drew University, and a Master of Business Administration from Monmouth University.
“We are confident that President Long will continue to move ESU in the right trajectory as is already evident from the positive results with our post-pandemic enrollment and great
community relations” said L. Patrick Ross ‘67, chair of the Council of Trustees. “He has strong financial acumen and has made ESU fiscally sound despite enormous pressures facing higher education in general and the PASSHE universities specifically,” Ross said.
During his time as interim president, Long has made an impact on the community at large. In 2021 the Pocono Chamber of Commerce awarded him the Best Business Leader of the Year BIZZY Award. Lehigh Valley Business named Long among their “Power 30” in 2021 and 2022, who are chosen by reporters and editors in the LVB newsroom and honors individuals who hold positions that give them the ability to shape communities and influence the quality of life in the Greater Lehigh Valley.
On campus, Long helped the university steer through the uncertainties of the COVID-19 pandemic, coordinated improvements in campus buildings and athletic facilities, maintained the university’s financial stability and affordability, broke ground on the long-awaited new university center, and helped drive the first enrollment increase in three years in fall 2022.
In 2021 he outlined 10 structural and operational actions and his commitment to foster a more just and welcoming campus community. President Long’s 10 Action Items were implemented throughout the calendar year and have all become an ongoing piece of campus culture.
“President Long brings a vision and understanding of diversity and inclusive excellence to our campus, and his proven dedication to access and equity is very important in higher education. In the past two years as interim president, he clearly has demonstrated his commitment to all of our students and alumni that make up the Warrior Family,” said chair Ross.
“It is a tremendous honor to be chosen to lead East Stroudsburg University as president,” Long said. “Having been part of the Warrior Community for the past nine years, I am humbled by the opportunity to build on the university’s 129-year history of providing affordable post-secondary education in the region.
“I look forward to continue working with faculty, students, staff, administrators, alumni and the local community in advancing the mission of ESU, and for the university to continue contributing to the growth and prosperity of the region and commonwealth.”
The national search for the presidential position yielded 84 applicants. The search committee, which consisted of members of the Council of Trustees, faculty, staff, students, alumni, and the Board of Governors reviewed the applicants, with the assistance of RPA Inc. as the presidential search consulting firm. The final three candidates then visited campus to meet with various constituencies.
“The committee did a wonderful job during the entire process and with the recommendation of the two final candidates to the Council of Trustees, who then recommended the candidates to the State System’s Board of Governors”, said Tina L. Nixon ’89, trustee and committee chair. “We know that the Board of Governors had two strong candidates to conduct their interviews before making the final decision.”
About East Stroudsburg University
East Stroudsburg University, one of the 14 institutions in the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education, opened in 1893 as East Stroudsburg Normal School. Today, ESU is a comprehensive university in northeastern Pennsylvania offering 58 undergraduate programs, 21 master’s programs and two doctoral programs. Over 5,000 students are enrolled for the high quality, affordable, and accessible education ESU provides. Nearly 31,000 ESU alumni live in Pennsylvania.