President Ronald Mason Jr: A Legacy of Excellence

President Ronald Mason Jr: A Legacy of Excellence

President Ronald Mason Jr: A Legacy of Excellence


President Mason at Founders Day 2019


Many things have changed since President Mason took the helm of the University. His historic leadership has been instrumental to Team UDC. One of his proudest accomplishments is UDC’s #17 ranking in U.S. News & World Report’s 2022-2023 Best Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), up from #30 the previous year.

U.S. News compared 77 Historically Black Colleges and Universities to achieve these rankings. UDC ranked 7th among all public HBCUs. UDC’s David A. Clarke School of Law’s Clinical Program was also highly rated, tying for 5th with Yale University for Clinical Law Training in the report’s graduate school rankings.

Other notable highlights from President Mason’s tenure include:

  • Secured the most significant private gift in University history—$2.3 million for need-based scholarships
  • Began a multi-million-dollar capital renovation and expansion program
  • Tripled spending on research
  • Launched two new Ph.D. programs (Urban Leadership & Entrepreneurship and Engineering & Computer Science)
  • Saw the University’s first Ph.D. cohort graduate at May’s Commencement
  • Established the Center for Diversity, Inclusion & Multicultural Affairs (CDIMA)
  • Expanded the University’s information technology infrastructure
  • Launched specific initiatives to build UDC’s brand among DC Public Schools, its primary feeder institutions

President Mason has served in many leadership roles, including two terms on the National Association for Institutional Quality and Integrity and multiple terms on the Thurgood Marshall College Fund Board. He has chaired the National Association for Equal Opportunity in Education and advised three U.S. presidents through the President’s Board of Advisors on Historically Black Colleges and Universities.

He formerly served on the Board of the American Council on Education and the American University of Nigeria Board. He is a Digital Promise Board Member, serves on the Educational Testing Service HBCU Advisory Committee, and is the Vice-Chair of the Consortium of Universities of the Washington Metropolitan Area.

President Mason has received numerous honors, including the Southern Christian Leadership Conference Award for Educational Leadership, the Benjamin E. Mays Educator of the Year, Columbia University John Jay Award for Distinguished Professional Achievement, TMCF Educator of the Year, the City of New Orleans Medal of Honor and the Tulane/Xavier/Loyola Lifetime Achievement Award.