Dr. LaTonia Collins Smith is the 21st President of the University. Dr. Collins Smith is the first African American woman President of HSSU, following the legacy of Ruth Harris, the first African American woman President of Stowe Teachers College in 1940. Chair of the Board of Regents, Michael McMillan commented that “Dr. Collins Smith exemplifies Harris-Stowe’s core values of Personal Growth, Respect, Innovation, Diversity, and Excellence.
She has demonstrated her extraordinary ability to connect with all of our stakeholders and to catapult Harris-Stowe forward in these critical times.” Collins Smith has received numerous awards, most recently receiving the Frankie Muse Freeman/Norman R. Seay Commitment to St. Louis Award with Michael McMillan at the St. Louis City NAACP 110th Anniversary Celebration and Freedom Fund Dinner. Other awards include the Equal Education Opportunity Group Pioneer Award, the NAACP Ben Hooks Community Leader award and the AKA, Inc. Central Region’s Outstanding Educational Advancement Captain award. She is a 2019 Millennium Leadership Initiative Protégé and a St. Louis Business Diversity Initiative Fellow and a Higher Education Leadership Foundation Fellow.
A native of the Historic Ville Neighborhood in St. Louis, Dr. Collins Smith is a proud graduate of St. Louis Public Schools. She earned an educational Doctorate in Higher Education Leadership from Maryville University. She holds a Master of Social Work degree and a Master of Public Health degree from Saint Louis University. She is a graduate of the University of Central Missouri, where she majored in social work.
November 16, 2022