August 26, 2020

New Orleans, La. - Xavier University of Louisiana has announced the appointment of Phillip D. Adams as the Vice President of Institutional Advancement (VPIA). As the VPIA, Adams will provide leadership to the University’s fundraising and development division and is responsible for designing and implementing comprehensive institutional advancement initiatives.

 “This national search process was robust and attracted a talented field of advancement professionals indicative of Xavier’s stellar reputation among higher education institutions,” said Reynold Verret, Xavier University President. Adding, “Mr. Adams was selected after deep deliberation by the committee which referred  for my review the final candidates. I anticipate much success building upon our recent accomplishments.”

Adams previously served as the Vice President for University Advancement at Savannah State University in Georgia. He also acted as the Executive Director of the SSU Foundation and as the Director of Government Relations. He has served successfully at three Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) as Vice President for Institutional Advancement.

“I am unbelievably excited to support the Xavier University community and ensure that we are able to secure the financial resources that the University needs to continue advancing its world-class status,” said Adams, “I look forward to leading the advancement team into a new era of fundraising as we approach our centennial celebrating our past and preparing us for sustainability as we enter the second century of living the founding mission of St. Katharine Drexel.”

Adams brings three decades worth of experience as a fundraiser and campaign director. Previously, Adams’ appointments included positions at Norfolk State University, LeMoyne-Owen College, Saint Louis University, and United Way of Saint Louis. He has built a reputation as a strong, committed, and ethical colleague to his fellow vice presidents and cabinet officers.

“As Chairman of the Development Committee of the Board of Trustees, I am delighted by the selection of Phillip Adams as the next Vice President for Institutional Advancement. Phillip’s vast knowledge of advancement coupled with his experience as Chief Advancement Officer at three HBCU’s and Development Director at a Catholic institution set him apart. Phillip is a veteran with six years in the U.S. Air Force. He has expertise in implementing capital campaigns. Phillip will be an incredible asset as Xavier approaches its centennial in 2025,” said Xavier Board Trustee James Mitchell.

As a veteran of the United States Air Force, Adams received awards for programs he developed and implemented during his service. He also offered his skills to support his community; serving as a Campaign and Marketing Associate at United Way of Greater Saint Louis, Adams was responsible for planning, designing, and coordinating fundraising campaigns for more than 600 companies and organizations. He is a member of the Rotary Club, Chamber of Commerce, and has served as a board member for the Boys and Girls Clubs of America.

Xavier alumna Marie McDemmond, a former member of the Xavier Board of Trustees and former President of Norfolk State University, commented upon hearing the news of his appointment, “While Phillip was in my employ, he demonstrated extreme diligence in his work, he crosses every ‘T’ and dots every ‘I.’ He will serve Xavier well.”

Adams received his Masters of Science degree at Golden Gate University and his undergraduate degree from Saint Leo University.

Vice President of Institutional Advancement

About Xavier University of Louisiana

Being America’s only historically Black and Catholic University is only the first among many distinctions that have set Xavier University of Louisiana apart for more than nine decades. Despite its relatively small size (3,300 students), Xavier is a nationally recognized leader in the STEM and the health sciences, producing more African American students who graduate from medical schools each year than any other university in the United States. Its College of Pharmacy is among the top producers of African American pharmacists.

Its liberal arts-based programs in such areas as art, business, education, psychology, and political science – as well as recent additions in bioinformatics, data science, neuroscience, crime and social justice, and jazz studies – offer students an unbeatable combination of traditional classroom study, hands-on research, service-learning opportunities, and life experiences. The winning Xavier formula to provide students with a well-balanced curriculum and an environment that nurtures their intellect and feeds their souls.

For more information about Xavier University of Louisiana, visit us online at or follow us on Facebook, YouTube, or Twitter @XULA1925. To book interviews and/or to speak with our experts in the field of pharmacy, education, premed, public health, science, technology, math, business, English, communications, and the arts, contact Lance Sumler at (504) 520-5240 or

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