JCSU president to retire in June

CHARLOTTE — Johnson C. Smith University President Clarence D. Armbrister announced on Tuesday he will retire at the end of the semester in June.

Armbrister is the university’s 14th president.

He joined JCSU in 2018 and will stay on as a senior advisor to the new president until 2024.

“It is a bittersweet moment for me and my family because we love this university and the unparalleled opportunities HBCUs like ours provide for thousands of students across the country each year,” Armbrister said in a letter Tuesday to faculty, staff and students.

The university’s Board of Trustees will begin a search for his successor.

The board expects to have a new president in place by fall for the start of the 2023-24 school year.

Rep. Alma Adams shared the following quote about Armbrister’s retirement:

“I’ve been proud to work with President Armbrister to grow Charlotte’s own HBCU, Johnson C. Smith University,” said Adams, founder and co-chair of the Congressional Bipartisan HBCU Caucus. “For five years, President Armbrister has been a transformative leader, not only for JCSU but for the West End and the entire Charlotte Community. Under Clay’s leadership, JCSU has modernized its campus, overcome a pandemic, and led a historic fundraising drive to raise $80 million to support the university’s academic and career-ready programs.

“Last year, I said President Armbrister is one of the true heroes behind America’s progress during the pandemic, and he has continued to earn that compliment with his leadership in our community. I am proud to call him a friend, and wish him the best in his future endeavors.”

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