Kentucky State University has named Dr. Koffi C. Akakpo as the school’s 19th president.
Regents announced on Tuesday that Akakpo, who currently serves as president of Bluegrass Community and Technical College, will assume his new role at the university on July 1. His appointment comes after a national search.
“Kentucky State University is poised for a great future,” Kentucky State University Board of Regents Chair Tammi Dukes said in a statement. “Under Dr. Akakpo’s leadership, the University can advance in many areas, and we are pleased to hand the baton to him at such a critical time in the institution’s journey.”
The historically Black university in Frankfort hasn’t had a permanent leader since July 2021, when M. Christopher Brown II resigned amid growing concerns about the school’s financial health.
State lawmakers stepped in and passed a bill last year that included $23 million to address a budget shortfall, with measures in place to create a management improvement plan and financial accountability.
An audit ordered last year revealed a “chaotic accounting environment” that lead to undocumented credit card transactions, extravagant bonuses and a lack of controls that put millions of dollars in federal grant funding at risk. It primarily focused on the school’s financial and internal policies between July 1, 2018, and June 30, 2021.
Lawmakers also passed a bill last year that nearly replaced all members of KSU’s Board of Regents and new leaders at the school have been working diligently to address the problems.
Akakpo said he believes in using a collaborative approach to turn problems into opportunities.
“My work focuses on championing postsecondary institutions, tackling the uncertainty they face, and securing their current and future prosperity, particularly through bold thinking, transformational problem-solving, and strategic partnership building,” Akakpo said.