Georgia Southwestern names interim Provost
Dr. Jill Drake

Georgia Southwestern State University
Jill Drake

AMERICUS, GA (March 22, 2023) – As the search for provost and vice president of Academic Affairs (VPAA) at Georgia Southwestern State University (GSW) proceeds, Jill Drake, Ed.D., has been named interim and will begin on April 3.

Drake currently serves as the associate vice president for Academic Affairs at the University of West Georgia (UWG) in Carrollton and will serve in the interim in an agreement between the two institutions.

“We look forward to welcoming Dr. Drake to GSW’s campus,” said GSW President Neal Weaver, Ph.D. “Her leadership and perspective will be valued during this interim period.”

Drake has 23 years of experience in higher education with ten years in both public and private educational settings. She holds faculty rank at UWG as a tenured, full professor in the College of Education. She received her Doctorate of Education from the University of Georgia in 1999. She also holds an Education Specialist degree, a Master of Science degree, and a Bachelor of Science degree in Elementary Education from Florida State University.

The national search for GSW’s next provost and VPAA continues after Suzanne Smith, Ph.D., who served in this role for nearly five years, was named president at SUNY Potsdam in New York.

Higher Education Leadership Search is leading the search efforts, along with an 11-person committee at GSW chaired by Laura Boren, Ph.D., GSW’s executive vice president of Student Engagement and Success.

“We recognize the importance of this position in working closely with all constituent groups to achieve the institution’s academic mission,” stated Weaver. “Our goal is to select the candidate who best fits with GSW values and can advance our institutional priorities. If we continue to stay on course, our new Provost/VPAA will be on board mid to late summer.”

For up-to-date information on the position profile, search committee, and timeline, click here

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