U.S. Army retired Lt. Gen. Darrell K. Williams has been named the next president of Hampton University. Williams will be the 13th president in the history of the university and succeeds President William R. Harvey, who retires on June 30 after a 44-year tenure at the HBCU.

According to the press release, Williams was chosen president on March 30, 2022 by the university’s Board of Trustees out of 300 candidates.  In addition to his military background, Williams has experience in commercial business enterprises, as well as nonprofit and academic leadership experience.

“Running a university is complex, as was made evident by the global pandemic. When President Harvey told us of his decision to retire, we knew we wanted to build upon what he has accomplished,” said Hampton's Board of Trustees Chairman Wes Coleman. “We embarked on a search for a proven strategic leader. The skills Lt. Gen. Williams is bringing to Hampton encompass what institutions of our size need. In a global world increasingly dependent on technology, this kind of strategic leadership expertise and knowledge can only help to move our institution forward over the coming decades.”

“I love Hampton and bring a wealth of strategic leadership experiences, including management of large global organizations, as well as the academic and nonprofit experience necessary to successfully lead the university,” Williams said. “I am thrilled to have been selected as the next president. I will work tirelessly with students, faculty, staff, alumni, and the broader community to prepare our graduates for today and the continuously evolving, technology-driven workforce of tomorrow.” 

Hampton's University new president Former Lt. General Darrell K. Williams. Image: courtesy of Hamptons University.

Currently, Williams is employed by Leidos serving as vice president of Leidos United Kingdom. He's also the managing director of the U.K. Ministry of Defence Logistics Commodities and Services Transformation (LCST) program, which provides global logistical support to U.K. military forces.

Williams earned his bachelor’s degree in 1983 from Hampton University. He also holds a master’s in business administration from Pennsylvania State University; a master’s in military art and science from the Army Combined and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, Kansas; and a master’s (distinguished graduate)in national security strategy from the National War College, Fort McNair, Washington, D.C.