Southern New Hampshire University (SNHU) President and CEO Dr. Paul J. LeBlanc has announced that he will step down from the role on Jun. 30, 2024, bringing an end to more than two decades at the helm.
During his tenure as SNHU’s fifth president, the school grew from 2,500 students to the largest nonprofit higher ed provider in the U.S., with more than 225,000 learners.
For his leadership, LeBlanc – a first-generation college graduate – was named one of Forbes Magazine’s 15 “Classroom Revolutionaries” and one of the “most influential people in higher education,” in addition to winning the TIAA Institute Hesburgh Award for Leadership Excellence in Higher Education in 2018.
He also for a time served as senior policy adviser to Under Secretary Ted Mitchell at the Obama-era Department of Education.
One of LeBlanc’s efforts included the SNHU Global Education Movement (GEM) for refugee and displaced learners in Africa and the Middle East. SNHU also partnered with YWCA NH for the Center for New Americans to support families new to the U.S.
“While historically underserved populations of learners have often been given inferior or just ‘good enough’ educational options, Paul and his team have brought cutting edge innovation and student-centered learning to tens of thousands of students and transformed their lives and the lives of their families,” said Dr. Sonja Brookins Santelises, CEO of Baltimore City Public Schools and a SNHU board member. “They have done it in refugee camps, in low-income communities, and with students who are too often left behind by traditional higher education – this is disruptive education in service to humanity.”
Lisa Marsh Ryerson will become SNHU president, effective Jul. 1, 2024. She is currently the school’s provost.