Darrell K. Williams, a retired three-star general, business leader, and educator with nonprofit development experience, recently outlined his focus as the new president of Hampton University. Primary will be creating an unparalleled higher education experience for students. That experience, he said, includes excellent academics, support for strong physical, emotional, and mental health, and access to cutting-edge technology, research opportunities, and innovative studies.
With the continuing support of the university’s faculty, staff, and alumni, Williams sees a bold, bright future for Hampton University.
“I love Hampton and the opportunities provided to me here. The university’s values and standard of excellence will not change,” Williams said. “As the new president, my priority will be providing our students with a robust experience that is second to none and prepares them for life after graduation.”
Board of Trustees Chairman Wesley Coleman said the board is excited about Hampton’s future under Williams’ leadership. Williams was selected to succeed Dr William R. Harvey as HU’s president by the board of trustees on March 30 and sworn in on July 1.
“The university community is energized President Williams has arrived,” Coleman said. “We have a great leader who has the full backing of the board, and we are looking forward to working with him.”
President Darrell K. Williams and First Lady Myra Richardson Williams met while attending Hampton, married in 1987, and are the first president and first lady to both hold Hampton degrees.
While a student, the president was Mister Freshman 1979, a three-year Reserve Officer Training (ROTC) scholarship cadet, a member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc., and senior class president. Myra Williams was a four-year member of the Hampton concert choir and a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.
Williams comes to Hampton from Fortune 250 technology company Leidos, where he served as the global organization’s United Kingdom vicepresident and managing director of the U.K. Ministry of Defence Logistics Commodities and Services Transformation (LCST) program, providing global logistical support to U.K. military forces.
Williams retired from the U.S. Army in 2020 after 37 years of service.
His last leadership position was as the first Black and 19th director of the Department of Defense’s Defense Logistics Agency (DLA). He oversaw a global workforce of over 26,000 civilian and military professionals.
From 2015 to 2017, Williams led the Army Combined Arms Support Command and the Fort Lee, Virginia, military installation. Additionally, he led the installation’s strategic engagement with the Richmond, Petersburg, Hopewell, and Colonial Heights communities, and he assured the welfare and safety of the over 25,000 students, staff and faculty, families, and support organizations.
Williams, a native of West Palm Beach, Florida, holds three graduate school degrees: 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 in national security strategy (distinguished graduate) from the National War College, Fort McNair, Washington, D.C.
PHOTO: Retired U.S. Army Gen. Darrell K. Williams (far left) and his wife First Lady Myra Richardson Williams (far right) with HU students, shortly after assuming the Presidency of Virginia’s oldest Private Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) on July 1. Photo: Courtesy