About President Howard

 DR. CHRISTOPHER B. HOWARD, the 24th President of Hampden-Sydney College, is one of the youngest college presidents in the United States. Hampden-Sydney, a private, liberal arts college for men, has been in continuous operation since classes began in 1775 on its historic campus 60 miles southwest of Richmond, Virginia. In 2011-12, Hampden-Sydney improved 17 spots in the US News & World Report rankings, the largest such jump of any of the top 100 liberal arts colleges.

Dr. Howard is a distinguished graduate of the US Air Force Academy, where he earned a BS in political science. A Rhodes Scholar, he earned his Doctorate in politics at Oxford University and an MBA with distinction from the Harvard Business School. At the Academy he received the Campbell Award (previously known as the Draddy Award), the highest academic award in the country presented to a senior football player; he was inducted into the Verizon Academic All-America Hall of Fame in 2003.

Before his appointment as President of Hampden-Sydney College in 2009, Dr. Howard served as Vice President for Leadership & Strategic Initiatives at the University of Oklahoma, where he also served as the Director of the Honors College Leadership Center and a President’s Associates Presidential Professor.

Dr. Howard was a 2012 honoree of Dominion Power’s Strong Men and Women: Excellence in Leadership Series. He  was named a 2010 African-American Trailblazer in Virginia History by the Library of Virginia.Dr. Howard was featured in an Associated Press story published by The New York Times, The Boston Globe, and The Washington Times, among numerous others. He has been featured on NPR’s All Things Considered and interviewed on CNN, PBS, and PRI’s The Tavis Smiley Show.

Currently he is:

In areas related to education,

  • Nominated by President Barack Obama and confirmed by the United States Senate to serve as a member of the National Security Education Program Board.
  • A member of the Higher Education Working Group on Global Issues of the Council on Foreign Relations, an independent, nonpartisan membership organization, think tank, and publisher dedicated to being a resource for its members, government officials, business executives, journalists, educators and students, civic and religious leaders, and other interested citizens in order to help them better understand the world and the foreign policy choices facing the United States and other countries.
  • A trustee of the Virginia Foundation for Independent Colleges.
  • A member of the Board of Directors of the Council of Independent Colleges of Virginia
  • On the Board of Episcopal High School, a 9-12 co-educational boarding school located in Alexandria, Virginia.
  • On the Board of Advisors of the David L. Boren College of International Studies at the University of Oklahoma
  • A former trustee of The Association of American Rhodes Scholars.
  • On the Board of the Morehouse Research Institute, Morehouse College is one of four liberal arts colleges for men in the nation along with Hampden-Sydney College, Wabash, and St. Johns University in Minnesota.

In areas related to business,

  • Dr. Howard has co-authored a new book with David Snider, Money Makers: Inside the New World of Finance and Business.
  • He is a member of the OLO Systems Advisory Board and was formerly on the Board of Directors of Converge, an IT de-manufacturing firm.
  • He served as the youngest member of the annual Washington Post-Harvard University “America’s Best Leaders” selection committee.
  • He served in General Electric’s Corporate Initiatives Group.
  • He has worked in sales, marketing, international project management, strategic planning, internal consulting, and business development at Bristol-Myers Squibb.
  • He has also served as the acting Managing Director of Endeavor South Africa, a global initiative that supports entrepreneurs in the developing world.
  • Dr. Howard was a regular guest on Ali Velshi’s CNN television program, where he participates via Skype in roundtable discussion and commentary as a member of the “Stream Team.”

In the military,

  • A retired Air Force Lieutenant Colonel, he was called to active duty during 2003 in Afghanistan, where he was awarded a Bronze Star.
  • He served as the Reserve Air Attaché to Liberia.
  • While on active duty, Howard served as intelligence operations and plans officer with the elite Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC)


He is married to the former Miss Barbara Noble from Johannesburg, South Africa, and has two sons, Cohen and Joshua.

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