Former NFL Player Johnathan Holifield to Head White House HBCU Initiative

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(Former NFL player Johnathan Holifield.)

BY TNJ STAFF

On Monday, Johnathan Holifield, an economic development consultant and former Cincinnati Bengals player, was named director of the White House Initiative on Historically Black Colleges and Universities.

Holifield, a 20-year veteran in the business landscape, is the co-founder of ScaleUp Partners, a consulting firm that seeks to enhance “economic inclusion and competitiveness and building community systems to improve the productivity of underserved Americans.” He is the former vice president of new economy enterprise for the Cincinnati Chamber of Commerce.

According to online reports, the Thurgood Marshall College Fund was pleased with the White House’s decision to install Holifield citing that, “Holifield’s experience will help lead the critical work of developing a robust policy and budgetary agenda to positively impact HBCUs.”

United Negro College Fund President & CEO Michael Lomax furthered that sentiment stating, “We look forward to learning how he will champion meaningful actions to advance HBCUs and ensure that more African American students have the opportunity to go to and through college.”

The news comes months after the Congressional Black Caucus urged the Trump administration to include support for HBCUs in the budget.

Author of The Future Economy and Inclusive Competitiveness: How Demographic Trends and Innovation Can Create Economic Prosperity for All Americans. Holifield holds a bachelor’s degree from West Virginia University, where he was captain of the football team. He holds a master’s degree in education and a juris doctorate from the University of Cincinnati.