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President's Biography

Dr. Marnelle Alexis Stephens was unanimously selected as President of MacCormac College by the Board of Trustees on May 5, 2011. She assumed office on June 25, 2011 to share her passion for learning, innovation and service with 100-year- old MacCormac College. 

As President of MacCormac, Dr. Alexis Stephens is prepared to lead successful initiatives to affirm the founding values of MacCormac College, enhance academic offerings, invigorate students and faculty, and deepen and broaden connections to the City of Chicago and across the nation.

Prior to joining MacCormac, Dr. Alexis Stephens concurrently held positions at Duke University as Associate Dean for Undergraduate Education and as Executive Director of the Comprehensive Education Institute for Duke University Health System. In these roles she was the chief academic and administrative officer with jurisdiction over the academic and administrative areas of accreditation; curriculum development, teaching, research, revenue generation, grant acquisition and fundraising. 

Dr. Alexis Stephens has put into practice much of her 20 plus years of experience in higher education in leadership positions at Columbia University, New York University, University of Pennsylvania and the State University of New York at Old Westbury. She also served on the faculty at Bronx Community College. Her for-profit experience working as an executive level business developer and profit and loss manager for Kaplan, Inc. and as a university relationship manager for Goldman Sachs & Co. on Wall Street makes Dr. Alexis Stephens particularly well suited to effectively transition MacCormac College into the quintessential college of the 21st century.

A leader and innovator in her field of study at key levels of higher education – Dr. Alexis Stephens writes, speaks, and advises on policies and programs relating to institutional growth and advancement, business development, strategic planning, philanthropic initiatives and academic management. She is a practitioner, consultant, and author of the leading academic book “Consulting to Universities.” She has spoken on how to develop leadership skills, higher education opportunities, her own success story, as well as how to stand out in a competitive job market, among other topics.

A native New Yorker, Dr. Alexis Stephens received her B.A. in Comparative Humanities from the State University of New York at Old Westbury; a M.A. in Student Personnel Administration from New York University; an Ed.M. in Higher Education Administration from Columbia University Teacher’s College; an Ed.D. in Higher Education Management at the University of Pennsylvania; a Ph.D., in Theology at Northwestern Theological Seminary; and studied at the Institute for Higher Education at Harvard University.

Finally, but most importantly, Dr. Alexis Stephens is a minister and is committed to a life of service. Her professional experiences highlight her gifts in the areas of administration, leadership, and teaching which is often mirrored in her work as a public servant, minister and preacher. Her life’s mission is to transform lives through the dissemination of educational tools and practical bible truths that function to educate and empower men, women and children who seek to open their minds, to lead, to serve, and to become outstanding citizens.