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1/21/2010 - Jackson, Miss.

The Board of Trustees of the State Institutions of Higher Learning voted unanimously today to appoint former Southwestern Athletic Conference (SWAC) President Dr. Norris Edney to serve as interim president of Alcorn State University.

Dr. George Ross, 58, will step down as Alcorn's 17th president on February 5 to accept a new position as president of Central Michigan University. Dr. Ross has served at Alcorn since January 2008. The Board has not established a timeline for the search process for a new president.

"Most of my career has been spent at Alcorn State University, so this is a very exciting opportunity," Dr. Edney, 73, said. "I look forward to serving in this role as the Board proceeds in finding a permanent replacement."

Throughout his career, Dr. Edney has held multiple positions at Alcorn State University including Dean of Graduate Studies, Dean of the School of Arts and Sciences and Chairman of the Department of Biology. He also served as the SWAC president from 1979-1984.

"Dr. Edney is the perfect fit for this position because he is knowledgeable about the university and is well-respected among faculty and staff," IHL Board President Scott Ross said.

Commissioner of Higher Education Dr. Hank Bounds agreed.

"As a former professor and dean, Dr. Edney will be able to meet faculty, staff and student needs on a personal level during this transition period," he said.

Dr. Edney earned a bachelor of science in biology from Tougaloo College, a master's degree in biology from Antioch College and a Ph.D. in conservation from Michigan State University.


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