Laurie M. Joyner, Ph.D., officially became Wittenberg University's 14th president on July 1, 2012. Prior to joining Wittenberg, Joyner served as vice president for planning and dean of the college at Rollins College in Winter Park, Fla. In her administrative role, Joyner was responsible for institution-wide strategic planning and served as senior student affairs officer, including responsibility for athletics. She also co-chaired the college-wide budget committee, oversaw high-impact educational practices, and led the comprehensive student success initiative.
Joyner was formerly interim vice president for academic affairs and provost at Rollins. In this senior academic role, she exercised administrative oversight of academic deans, 400 faculty and staff members, and an operating budget of nearly $50 million. Joyner also staffed the Education Committee of the Board; initiated a campus-wide retention initiative; appointed the first executive director of student success; provided oversight of SACS and AACSB accreditation issues; and assisted with the establishment of a new College of Professional Studies.
From 2007 until 2010, Joyner served as dean of the faculty and professor of sociology at Rollins. In this position, her responsibilities centered on issues spanning all academic divisions including interdisciplinary programs; the integration of curricular and co-curricular initiatives; faculty recruitment, development, evaluation, compensation, and tenure and promotion; budget and finance issues associated with the largest academic unit on campus; external grants and contracts; and student support services. In 2009-10, she also provided administrative oversight of evening programs for non-traditional and graduate students through the Hamilton Holt School. As dean of the faculty, she created new revenue streams and engaged in fundraising efforts with major donors, foundations, and alumni.
Prior to her arrival at Rollins, Joyner served in a variety of positions at Loyola University New Orleans including faculty leadership roles on the Academic and Faculty Affairs Committee of the Board of Trustees and University Senate Executive Council, to administrative roles such as associate dean of the College of Arts and Sciences (2003-07). As associate dean she had responsibility for a broad range of faculty and student affairs including curricular reform, living-learning communities, faculty development, first-year experience programs and accreditation issues.
Joyner graduated magna cum laude and received the Dux Sociologicus Award from Loyola University New Orleans. She earned master's and doctoral degrees in sociology from Tulane University. In 2011, Joyner was one of 42 vice-presidential campus leaders selected to participate in the yearlong Executive Leadership Academy (ELA) sponsored by the Council of Independent Colleges (CIC) and American Academic Leadership Institute (AALI). She has also completed the Wellesley College Management Institute for Women in Higher Education Administration and the Bryn Mawr Higher Education Administration Summer Institute.
Throughout her academic and administrative career, a consistent priority has been linking the academy to diverse communities in ways that deepen student, faculty, and staff learning while addressing pressing social issues. Joyner's passion for engagement is evident in her publications, reports, and external grants and contracts as well as her community leadership roles. She recently chaired the Heart of Florida United Way (HFUW) Building Safe Communities Cabinet and was a member of the Investing in Results Council. Joyner has also served on the Executive Committee and Board of Directors for myregion.org, a group of leaders mobilizing communities across Central Florida to cooperate on super-regional issues such as sustainable growth and global competitiveness.
Joyner's campus and community leadership has been recognized numerous times throughout her career. She was recently honored with the Lucy Cross Award in recognition of her vision and leadership for Rollins College. She has also been honored by both Rollins College and Loyola University New Orleans for her work in the area of community engagement. Joyner received the Loyola University Twomey Award for successfully integrating the efforts of academic and student affairs to enhance student success and was also selected as a member of The Power Generation, one of the New Orleans CityBusiness top 40 people under the age of 40 to watch for the impact of her engaged scholarship on public education.