Lawrence Drake II

ATLANTA – University System of Georgia Chancellor Sonny Perdue has named a former interim president at a historically Black university in Florida to serve as interim president at Albany State University.

Lawrence Drake II will succeed current Albany State President Marion Ross Fedrick on July 1, when she leaves to become executive vice president and chief of staff to the president of Georgia State University.

Drake is currently president and CEO of the Atlanta-based educational outreach organization LEADing for Life. He previously served as interim president at Bethune-Cookman University in Daytona Beach, Fla.

Prior to joining academia, Drake worked at Coca-Cola for 21 years, where he served in several executive roles, including division president for Coca-Cola Africa.

“Dr. Drake has over 40 years of leadership experience, and his most recent work with both Bethune-Cookman and LEADing for Life demonstrates his strong commitment to student success in higher education,” Perdue said. “We are grateful for his commitment to build on Marion’s legacy in the interim as we undertake a national search for Albany State’s next president.”

“With my passion for expanding access to learning opportunities and helping individuals acquire 21st-century skills, I am honored to have this opportunity to work with Albany State’s faculty, staff and students in a time of positive transition,” Drake added.

“There’s so much momentum thanks to the work of President Fedrick, and I’m looking forward to doing my part for the legacy of the largest public HBCU (Historically Black College and University) in Georgia.”

A first-generation college graduate, Drake holds a bachelor’s degree in sociology from Georgia State and a second bachelor’s in elective studies from Fisk University in Nashville, Tenn. He earned a master’s degree from Rockhurst University in Kansas City, Mo., and a master’s and doctorate – both in psychology – from Fielding Graduate University in Santa Barbara, Calif.

Fedrick joined Albany State in 2017 and became the university’s 10th president a year later.