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A diverse firm of thought-leaders, practitioners and influencers

What We Do

  • Strategic Planning
  • Institutional Advancement and Fundraising
  • Enrollment Management
  • Advocacy and Government Relations
  • Diversity, Equity and Inclusion
  • Organizational Capacity Building
  • Community Engagement and Outreach Initiatives


Principal Consultant


Roderick L. Smothers, Sr. is a twenty-nine (29) year higher education professional whose focus has been providing transformative leadership, strategic advocacy and building institutional capacity at our nation’s Historically Black Colleges and Universities.

For the last nine years, he has served as the President and CEO of Philander Smith College, where he successfully strengthened the academic programs, enhanced the College’s local and national presence, increased enrollment, improved retention, increased donor giving, and developed programs and initiatives that equipped graduates with the qualifications, skills and resources that prepared them to compete in the global 21st-century marketplace.

As a result of his leadership, the institution is poised to transition from college to university status and just launched its first complement of master’s degree programs. As an accomplished fundraiser and relationship builder, Dr. Smothers has worked extensively with individuals, non-profit organizations, corporations, and foundations along with federal, regional and state agencies, to accomplish the strategic goals of the institutions that he has represented.

He holds a cumulative fundraising/grant writing record that exceeds $350,000 million. Most recently, his bipartisan, results-driven approach to strategic advocacy and resource development resulted in the championing of efforts to extend federal loan deferments for HBCUS, new legislative funding for HBCUs in Arkansas and private and public workforce innovation support in allied health, minority engineering and criminal justice.

Dr. Smothers also served as part of one of the advocacy teams that brokered the final exchanges to secure the votes needed in the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate to win passage of legislation that secured HBCU Capital Finance Deferments and ultimately forgiveness of over $1.3 billion in debt.

A native of Vidalia, Louisiana, Dr. Smothers earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology, a Master’s Degree in Public Administration (with a concentration in Higher Education Administration) and the Ph.D. in Educational Leadership, Research and Counseling all from Louisiana State University (LSU).

He also holds a certification in fundraising management from The Fund-Raising School at The Center on Philanthropy at Indiana University through the Thurgood Marshall College Fund Initiative. Additionally, he has served as a U.S. Air Force Reservist, with active-duty time spent during Desert Shield/Desert Storm.

A strong youth, community and civic proponent, Dr. Smothers served on the Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Texas Board of Directors, the Little Rock Chamber of Commerce – Fifty for the Future and the National Association of Methodist Schools, Colleges and Universities (NAMSCU), the Council of Independent Colleges Board of Directors and the United Negro College Fund Council of Member Presidents. He formerly served on the Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. National Board of Directors as its Southwestern Regional Vice President, and remains active at the local, regional and national levels.

Dr. Smothers is married to Katina Semien Smothers, Esq. and is the proud father of five children: Roderick Jr., Joshua, Takeira, Wilson and T’Keyah. In his leisure time, he enjoys college sports, fishing, reading and traveling abroad.

Key Strategy and Advocacy Interests:

  • Policy analysis and programmatic development
  • Workforce Innovation Strategies
  • Community Development and Engagement
  • Public and Private Teaching Excellence Initiatives
  • Enrollment Management
  • Strategic Planning and Capacity Building for Minority Serving Institutions (MSIs)
  • Social Justice Advocacy and Solutions
  • Diversity, Equity and Inclusion
  • Accreditation, Evaluation and Assessment