Dr. Ronald L. Carter


Dr. Ronald L. Carter became the 13th president of Johnson C. Smith University on July 1, 2008. The High Point, N.C. native has more than 30 years of experience serving students and universities. Prior to joining JCSU, he was provost and dean of faculty at Coker College in Hartsville, S.C.

Upon graduating magna cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa, with a Bachelor of Arts degree in sociology and philosophy from Morehouse College in 1971, Dr. Carter began his career at Boston University’s Martin Luther King Jr. Center as dean of students. While there he earned a Master of Theology degree and a Ph.D. in philosophy of religion.

In the late 1980s, Dr. Carter's interaction with relatives of Nelson Mandela compelled him to put his abilities to work in South Africa. He served as senior administrator of the Health Services Development Unit at the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, South Africa until returning to the U.S. in 1997.

Dr. Carter has served as moderator for the National Meeting of the Medical Institute for Sexual Health. Among his many honors and awards, he was appointed a Sloan Scholar at Morehouse College, a Danforth Fellow at Boston University, and a Merrill Scholar, Robert College, Istanbul, Turkey. He was a senior fellow at the Stedman Graham Leadership Institute of Chicago. In 2006, Dr. Carter received the 2006 South Carolina Dance Association President’s Award. In 2010, he received the Newcomer of the Year Award from Leadership Charlotte.

He is the father of a daughter, Tumelo Rosalind Carter, and has been the foster parent of four other children.