LaGrange College names five to new roles

Published 12:00 am Thursday, May 19, 2016

Business news

Contributed report






LaGRANGE — LaGrange College announced recently the promotions of five people to executive-level positions, effective June 1. Rebecca Roth Nicks, Joseph Miller, Marc Shook, Jennifer Claybrook and Dawn Coker have been named vice presidents, reporting to President Dan McAlexander.

The move comes with a restructuring of the current two-tiered president’s cabinet, which had included three vice presidents on the executive cabinet, and four individuals who reported to those vice presidents on the expanded cabinet. With the new structure, all cabinet members now report directly to the president.

“These promotions recognize the outstanding leadership success of each of these individuals,” said McAlexander. “They are evidence of the college’s ongoing commitment to leadership development and to rewarding exceptional performance.”

Nicks, senior director of development, has been promoted to vice president for external relations, replacing Will Jones, who has accepted a college presidency. Nicks holds an MBA from Columbus State University and is a certified fundraising executive with 18 years of experience in higher education, including work at Vanderbilt University. During her 10 years at the college she has increased annual giving and donation levels among all major groups and has brought great creativity to the college’s advancement efforts.

Miller, dean of enrollment management, will assume the role of vice president for enrollment. Holding a master’s degree from Auburn University, Miller has led significant enrollment growth during his four years at LaGrange. During that time, he was responsible for recruiting three of the four largest classes in the college’s history, including a record-setting class in 2013, and for more than tripling the number of top scholars choosing to attend LaGrange in each of the last three years, compared to the time of his arrival.

Shook, associate provost and dean of student engagement, has been promoted to vice president for student engagement. During his four-plus years at the institution, he has dramatically increased student involvement in campus organizations and community service. With a Ph.D. from the University of Virginia and a J.D. from the University of Alabama, Shook has provided statewide leadership on a number of issues affecting student health, wellness and safety at private colleges.

Claybrook, director of athletics, will assume the role of vice president for athletics. Holding both bachelor’s and master’s degrees from LaGrange College, she has led the college’s 16 athletic teams to unparalleled success, with more team national tournament appearances during her five years of leadership than in any other period in college history. In addition, Claybrook has actively encouraged an atmosphere of mutual support among student-athletes and the overall student body, leading to record-setting attendance at athletic events.

Coker, director of human resources, has been promoted to vice president for human resources, federal and state compliance, and diversity. Coker, a graduate of LaGrange College, has been in the human resources field more than 30 years, including service with AFLAC in Columbus and holds professional certifications in both human resources and benefits administration. During her six-plus years on campus she has guided a number of initiatives, including the wellness clinic partnership between the college and Troup County, and a core values training program for college employees.

“I look forward to working directly with these outstanding professionals, and to collaborating with them to advance the mission and vision of LaGrange College,” McAlexander said.

From a press release submitted by LaGrange College. Submit your organization’s press release to editor Matthew Strother at