Mississippi Valley State University

July 23, 2016


Dr. William B. Bynum Jr.


Professional Biography


Dr. William B. Bynum, Jr., a 25-year higher education professional, was unanimously selected to be the 7th President of Mississippi Valley State University (MVSU) by the Mississippi Institutions of Higher Learning Board on October 8, 2013 and he began his presidency at “The Valley” on November 6, 2013.

A native of Rocky Mount, N.C., Dr. Bynum earned his bachelor of arts degree in Sociology from Davidson College while on a student-athlete scholarship. While at Davidson, he also minored in Education and passed the National Teachers Exam. He was subsequently licensed and certified to teach Social Studies and Math in N.C. and Georgia. Dr. Bynum went on to earn his masters and Ph.D. in Sociology from Duke University while serving as a Duke Endowment Fellow. Dr. Bynum was also a member of the inaugural class of the NAFEO-Kellogg Leadership Fellows Program, a year-long program specifically designed to train the next generation of presidents/chancellors for minority serving institutions, which was led by then NAFEO president Dr. Frederick Humphries, NAFEO chairman Dr. Joe Johnson, and executive director Dr. Arthur Thomas. As part of the program, Dr. Bynum “shadowed” Dr. Harold Martin, then chancellor of Winston-Salem State University & now chancellor of N.C. A&T State University.


As the 7th President, Dr. Bynum’s vision for the University is to uplift 6 powerful words that are already deeply rooted in “The Valley” culture. The vision is: ONE GOAL. ONE TEAM. ONE VALLEY. The ONE GOAL is Student Success (increased enrollment, retention and graduation; holistic student development and career advancement). The ONE TEAM is University and Community Stakeholders Working Together.  And the ONE VALLEY is students, faculty, staff, alumni and friends actively demonstrating School Pride and Spirituality that is second to none!

Prior to his appointment at MVSU, Dr. Bynum served as the Vice President for Enrollment Management & Student Services at Morehouse College (2009-2013), where he was mentored by Morehouse’s 10th president Dr. Robert Michael Franklin. While serving at Morehouse, Dr. Bynum significantly enhanced student-administration relations, improved the efficiency and effectiveness of student services, started, envisioned and led the initiative which established the Parents Council and implemented the nationally acclaimed Morehouse “Appropriate Attire Policy.” 

Prior to Morehouse, Dr. Bynum served as the Vice President for Student Affairs & Enrollment Management (2000-2009) at The Lincoln University (PA). During his nine years of service, he was successful in nearly doubling Lincoln’s enrollment and recruited the 4 largest new student classes (900+) in the University’s 150 year history. Dr. Bynum also led the Board approved Student Enhancement Initiative, which entailed elevating Lincoln from NCAA Division III to NCAA Division II athletics, reactivated Lincoln’s membership in the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA) conference, returned football to the campus after a 40 year absence and started the University’s first marching band program, “The Orange Crush.” At Lincoln, Dr. Bynum was mentored by Dr. Ivory Nelson, the University’s 12th president, who garnered over $200 million in capital construction to transform the campus physical plant. 

Prior to LU, Dr. Bynum served as the Associate Vice President and Dean of Students at Clark Atlanta University (1993-2000), and he was the #2 person in the division that recruited the 4 largest classes (1500+) in the then 125 year history of CAU. While at CAU, Dr. Bynum was mentored by and developed strong strategic planning and assessment skills from Dr. Doris Walker Weathers. During his CAU days, Dr. Bynum was nicknamed “Bye Bye Bynum” for his no-nonsense approach to judicial affairs and enhancing the campus culture and environment. 

In addition to his enrollment management & student affairs work, Dr. Bynum has lectured and/or taught as well. He served as the Covington Distinguished Professor of Sociology at Davidson and at Morehouse he was an adjunct professor in the Leadership Studies program and Sociology department. Dr. Bynum’s other professional experience includes research and teaching positions at the Georgia Institute of Technology (Georgia Tech), Duke University and Durham and Edgecombe Community Colleges. He started his educational career as a teacher, football and wrestling coach in the Rocky Mount (N.C.) City School System (1984-87) and the Dekalb County (GA) School System (1987-88). Dr. Bynum has represented his institutions in numerous external programs and at professional conferences, while serving as a presenter or moderator. He has authored refereed articles in professional journals and presented papers with academic and social themes. Trained as a Quantitative Sociologist, Dr. Bynum still remains active in research and teaching. His research and teaching interests center around: (1) Black Church Studies, (2) Race, Gender and Ethnicity and (3) Organizations, Markets and Work.

His publications include a co-authored article with Duke colleagues in the sociology journal Social Forces entitled “Race and Formal Volunteering.” A chapter entitled “The Black Church in America: Demography and Current Trends“ in the book Exploring The African American Experience (3rd edition). And a short story entitled “For the Love of J-Ski” in the NASPA produced book Stories of Inspiration: Lessons and Laughter in Student Affairs.  Dr. Bynum is a member of Omicron Delta Kappa, Chi Alpha Epsilon and Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc.

A God-loving, God-fearing man, he is married to Deborah Elaine Bynum, a manager & 34 year employee with AT&T Mobility Services, and they are the proud parents of six children - Tyrone (a student at Georgia State University), Tyler (a student-athlete graduate of Truett-McConnell College), Chelsea (a student at Clark Atlanta University and Army Reservist), Zack (a student at Morehouse College), Jordan and Jazz (both of whom are Atlanta Public high school students).


Dr. Bynum’s personal and professional motto is “Look back and thank God. Look forward and trust God. Look around and serve God. Look within and find God.”