Alumni Message from President Walters

Dear Tougaloo Alumni,

We hope that you, your family, and your loved ones are healthy and well and enjoying the summer. It is hard to believe that we have been on this journey together for nearly twenty-three months—and what an exciting journey it has been! Thank you for your ideas, recommendations, and support that have helped cultivate success for our students and the special place you love and cherish—The Loo.

Our Strategic Planning Process is underway, and I am pleased to update you on our progress. National higher education strategic planning consulting firm CREDO is providing leadership and guidance to assist us with the development of Strategic Plan 2025. In addition, CREDO engaged the trustees, administrators, faculty, staff, and students in discovery sessions. In July, we will engage alumni leaders and business partners in discovery sessions. Input and ideas from all of our stakeholders will be critical to shaping the foundation for developing strategic goals and objectives for Strategic Plan 2025. Below is an overview of the strategic planning process timeline:

  • Leadership Team Retreat: CREDO engaged the leadership team in three days of activities reviewing essential context and existing information and exercises to dream about Tougaloo’s future to design the strategy map. (January 27th, January 28th, February 2nd)
  • Board Engagement Retreat: CREDO engaged the trustees in exercises to solicit their vision and dreams about Tougaloo’s future. (January 27th, January 28th)
  • Community Day: Faculty, staff, and student leaders participated in activities to solicit their input and dreams about Tougaloo’s future. (March 10th)
  • Planning Committee Launch: The Strategic Planning Team began reviewing data gathered from the leadership team, board, faculty, staff, and students to prepare for the next phase of the planning process. (April, May, June)
    Alumni Leaders and
  • Partners Session: Alumni leaders and business and community partners will share their ideas and perspectives about Tougaloo’s future. (July)
  • Theme Team Meetings: Thematic groups will collect quantitative and qualitative data; assess our strengths, challenges, opportunities, and weaknesses; develop strategic plan themes and goals and objectives to begin drafting the plan. (July, August)
  • Planning Committee Close: The Strategic Planning Team will share a draft of the plan with the campus community for feedback. (September)
  • Approval of Strategic Plan: The strategic plan will be presented at the Annual Board of Trustees meeting for approval. (October)

The new strategic plan will be an ambitious yet exciting undertaking for the Tougaloo community. I am excited about our progress and want to express my deep appreciation to the Strategic Planning Steering Committee for their time and dedication to one of the College’s most important stretch assignments that will impact every stakeholder. I am pleased to have our strategic planning process underway and eager to complete the plan and put it into action.

It is my pleasure to share some significant initiatives now underway. First, construction work is nearly complete for connecting East and West County Line Roads, and we will announce the date for the ribbon-cutting ceremony soon. Second, a team of experts has started renovation work to replace the windows in historic Woodworth Chapel and Galloway Hall. Other renovations in Galloway Hall include replacing the roof, installing new flooring and lighting, repairing the ceilings and walls, bringing the Northeast wing back online, and converting space on the first floor into a computer lab. Third, we are relocating the bookstore to the L. Zenobia Coleman Library and the mailroom to Warren Hall. Fourth, upgrades have started at Kincheloe, Jamerson, and Berkshire Halls. Finally, restoration work to complete the interior of the historic Robert O. Wilder Building, “The Mansion,” will begin this September. Watch for updates on these projects.

Congratulations to the newly elected TCNAA Executive Board officers whose three-year terms begin July 1, 2021: Joyce Small Delk, President; Hosea James, Vice President; Ro’chelle Williams, Recording Secretary; Herman Porter, Sr., Treasurer; and Elane Coleman, Alumni Representative to the Board of Trustees.

I am incredibly honored to pay tribute to Tougaloo Alumnus of the Year James McQuirter. Please join me in congratulating TCNAA’s newest distinguished honorees selected for induction into the Hall of Fame: Attorney Amanda Green Alexander ’98, Government and Law; Paul Douglas McQuirter ’74, Business; Dr. Alfred McNair, Jr. ’71 and Dr. LaTonya Washington ’00, Medicine; and Freddi Williams Evans ’77, Education. Our alumni continue to make us proud through their accomplishments, and we look forward to recognizing them in October.

In July, we will roll out our new logos and branding along with branding standards to ensure a cohesive brand across all platforms as part of an effort to authentically tell the Tougaloo story. In addition, our partner, Ellucian, will redesign the website to provide the best possible user experience with engaging, interactive, informative, and accessible content. If you have any questions about specific uses, please do not hesitate to contact the Office of Communications at 601-977-7904. We welcome everyone’s engagement in helping keep the Tougaloo College brand consistent and strong!

Thank you for being a part of the continued journey of preserving and advancing excellence.


Carmen J. Walters, Ph.D.