Kevin D. Rome, Sr., Ph.D.


President Rome 18

On July 1, 2017, Dr. Kevin D. Rome, Sr. became the 16th President of Fisk University in Nashville, Tennessee. Prior to beginning the presidency at Fisk, Rome served as the 19th President of Lincoln University in Jefferson City, Missouri from June 2013 to June 2017.

Dr. Kevin Rome has had an immediate impact at Fisk University. In his first year, the university has increased its freshman enrollment by approximately 100 percent, increased overall fundraising totals by 13 percent, increased alumni giving by three percentage points, and increased overall employee giving by 117 percent. In spring 2018, Dr. Rome and his family made a donation pledge of $50,000 over five years.

While president at Lincoln University, the university witnessed a 50 percent increase in freshman enrollment in addition to the creation of new institutional programs and academic initiatives. Rome is credited with the increase in funding from state appropriations for land-grant status, increasing the state match from $500,000 to $2.5 million in 2017 as a result of continued advocacy. He also worked collaboratively with Jefferson City Parks and Recreation to erect a $13 million, 80,000 square foot wellness and multipurpose center on campus. On a personal note, the Dr. Kevin and Stefanie Rome Endowed Scholarship Fund was established at Lincoln University to assist deserving students in need.

With over 25 years in higher education, Rome has served in various capacities of university administration. He has served as Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs and Enrollment Management at North Carolina Central University, Vice President for Student Services at Morehouse College, Vice President for Campus Life at Clayton State University, and Assistant Vice Chancellor for Student Life and Diversity at Indiana University-Purdue University, Indianapolis. 

Rome’s career has been deeply rooted in higher education, beginning at Georgia Southwestern College in Americus, Georgia as a Residence Hall Supervisor. From 1989 to 1991, he served as a Residence Director, Greek Advisor, and Financial Aid Counselor at the University of Georgia. In 1991, he joined the staff of California Polytechnic State University in San Luis Obispo, California as the Coordinator of Student Development. During his time at California Polytechnic State University, he received two promotions, serving as Academic Development Specialist and later as Education and Training Specialist. Additionally, Rome has served as Assistant Dean of Students in the area of New Student Services at the University of Texas at Austin. He was promoted to Assistant Dean of Students in the area of Campus and Community Involvement.

President Rome currently serves on the Historically Black Colleges and Universities Educational Testing Service (HBCU-ETS Steering Committee) Steering Committee, is a member of the class of Leadership Nashville 2019, and is a member of Rotary Club of Nashville. 

Previously, Dr. Rome served in a host of civic and social organizations, including serving on the Board of Directors of the Jefferson City Chamber of Commerce, Capital Region Medical Center, and Central Bank. Rome formerly served on the Board of Directors for the Association of Public and Land-Grant Universities (APLU), as Chair of the Council of 1890 Universities Executive Committee - APLU, Chair of the APLU Commission on Access, Diversity and Excellence (CADE), and on the Advisory Council on HBCU Governance and Leadership for the Association of Governing Boards’ (AGB). He is a life member of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Incorporated. 

Rome earned the Bachelor of Art degree in English from Morehouse College in Atlanta, Georgia in 1989. He received the Master of Education in College Student Personnel with an emphasis in counseling from the University of Georgia, Athens, Georgia, in 1991, and the Ph.D. in Higher Education Administration from the University of Texas at Austin in Austin, Texas in 2001.

Dr. Kevin D. Rome, Sr. is married to Stefanie Rome. They both reside in Nashville, Tennessee with their two children, Kevin Rome, Jr. and Kendel Rome.