WVSU Executive Leadership Team


President Cage Announces Appointments to the University's Executive Leadership Team

President Cage Announces Appointments to the University's Executive Leadership Team

West Virginia State University President Ericke S. Cage has announced several key appointments to the university’s executive leadership team effective Friday, July 1.

“As we prepare for an exciting and successful upcoming academic year, I am pleased to announce these appointments to the university's executive leadership team,” Cage said. “Having these key leaders in place for the start of the semester will help to advance the mission of WVSU as we work to transform the university into a center of excellence for teaching, research, innovation and public service. These experienced higher education leaders share my belief that the university's best days are ahead. "

Dr. J. Paige CarneyDr. J. Paige Carney has been named Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs. She has been serving in that position on an interim basis since July 2021, in addition to serving as Dean of the College of Professional Studies since 2015.

Under her leadership as Dean of the College of Professional Studies, several of the college’s programs, including criminal justice, education, health and human performance, and social work have achieved national recognition. In fall 2020 the college also launched a new bachelor of science in nursing degree program.

Since 2011, Carney has been a professor of education at WVSU and also previously served as the director of clinical experiences. She has also served as counselor to Kappa Delta Pi, the international honor society in education. Carney previously taught at WVSU from 1996 through 2004 as an associate professor of education.

In addition to her work at WVSU, Carney was chair of the education program and an associate professor of education at the University of Charleston from 2007 through May 2011, as well as an associate professor of education at Eastern Kentucky University from 2004 through 2005. She has also served as an Adjunct Professor with the Marshall University Graduate College.

Carney has also served as the external facilitator for reading for Kanawha County Schools from 2000 through 2004. From 2005 through 2010 she worked as a lecturer and researcher for the University of Kentucky serving as Kentucky’s principal investigator for Reading First, analyzing effective reading achievement and research-based instruction. She also worked as a kindergarten teacher from 1984 through 1992 in the Fayette County, Kentucky, Public School System.

Carney received her doctorate degree from the University of Kentucky, and her master’s degree from Georgetown College. She earned her bachelor’s degree from the University of South Carolina.

Dr. Stacey SowellDr. Stacey Sowell has been named Vice President for Enrollment Management and Student Affairs. She most recently served as the Director of Housing and Residence Life for South Carolina State University. She previously served as the Director of Admissions at South Carolina State University and as the Director of Admissions at Shaw University in Raleigh, North Carolina. While at Shaw University, Sowell also served as the Associate Dean of Students, where she worked collaboratively with staff across departments to support student success.
Sowell has more than 19 years of combined experience in enrollment management, student affairs, residence life, adjunct instructing and coaching. Prior to her work at Shaw University, she served as the Director of Student Activities for Saint Augustine's University and as the Student Events Coordinator for Louisburg College.
Sowell earned a bachelor's degree from Shaw University, and a master's and doctorate degree from North Carolina A&T State University.
She will join WVSU later in July.

Dr. Ami SmithDr. Ami Smith has been named Vice President and Dean and Director for Agricultural Research and Extension. She previously served as Interim Vice President for Research and Public Service.

Smith previously served as the university’s Associate Vice President for Public Service and Director of the WVSU Extension Service since 2015 and previously served as Interim Associate Vice President for Research from 2015 to 2018.
Prior to her role as Associate Vice President, Smith served as Associate Dean and Associate Director of WVSU Extension Service, Director and Program Leader of WVSU CASTEM, and Assistant Research Professor and postdoctoral scientist for WVSU AERS. She obtained a doctorate degree in biosciences from the University of Exeter and a bachelor’s degree in biology from WVSU.

Justin McAllisterJustin McAllister has been named Vice President for Business and Finance. He previously served in this position on an interim basis.
McAllister joined WVSU in 2021 as the Assistant Vice President for Business and Finance. Prior to joining WVSU, McAllister was the Chief Financial Officer for the West Virginia Office of Technology from 2013 to 2021. 

As CFO, McAllister developed and implemented best practices to ensure financial stability, and advised and collaborated with state executives to guide and plan for the financial future of the State's Central IT Organization.

McAllister has a bachelor's of science degree in accounting and business administration and a master's of forensic accounting both from the University of Charleston.

Dr. Micheal FultzDr. Micheal Fultz has been named Associate Provost and Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs. He previously served as Chair of the Department of Chemistry.
Fultz received a bachelor’s degree from the University of Tennessee at Martin and earned his doctorate in chemistry from Indiana University. In addition to serving as chair of the Chemistry Department, he leads the university’s student chapter of the American Chemical Society.
He has twice been a finalist for the Professor of the Year award presented by the Faculty Merit Foundation of West Virginia. The Professor of the Year program honors the outstanding achievements of educators at the college and university level.

The newly appointed members of the university’s executive leadership team join with those executives currently serving in the President's Cabinet, Vice President and Chief of Staff Eric Jackson, Vice President for University Advancement Patricia Schumann, Athletic Director Nate Burton, and General Counsel Alice Faucett.

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