Radford University Board of Visitors Extends President Kyle’s Contract


President Penelope W. Kyle

The Radford University Board of Visitors has extended President Penelope W. Kyle’s contract for an additional five years. “The Board has been and continues to be extremely pleased with the growing list of substantial achievements and accomplishments that have occurred at Radford University since President Kyle became president in 2005,” said Stephen A. Musselwhite, Rector of the Board of Visitors.  Musselwhite added, “During her tenure, RU has grown in stature and distinction and has become an even more favored destination for the Commonwealth’s graduating high school seniors and for transfer students from Virginia’s community colleges.”  Radford is on track to achieve a total enrollment of 10,000 students within the next few years for the first time in the university’s history.

Linda Whitley-Taylor, Chair of the Board’s Governance and Administration Committee, Rector-Elect and a 1986 graduate of Radford University said, “Under President Kyle’s leadership, the university has been heralded as one of the nation's top up-and-coming schools, best regional universities and leading master's universities in the South, and has established its first doctoral programs in psychology, physical therapy and nursing practice.  As an alumna, I am especially pleased with the leadership that President Kyle is providing for my beloved alma mater.”

Since her arrival, President Kyle has been the catalyst in bringing nearly $300 million in capital construction and renovation to the campus.  In August 2012, the university will open the doors of a landmark 116,643 square foot, $43 million state-of-the-art College of Business and Economics.  Also, this academic year, RU will break ground on a new 115,000 square foot, $49 million Center for the Sciences and a new 110,000 square foot, $32 million student fitness and wellness center.  Using planning monies recently authorized by the Governor and General Assembly, the university will immediately begin planning for construction of a new 115,000 square foot, $68 million academic building to house the College of Humanities and Behavioral Sciences.  In addition to the new construction, ten academic, student housing, athletic and administrative buildings have received major renovations and upgrades to more effectively serve the academic and student communities.

President Kyle sought and received Level II autonomy from the Commonwealth in the areas of both information technology and procurement.  In 2011, the university received All-Steinway School status, a distinction held by fewer than 150 institutions in the world.  Additionally, as a persistent advocate for sustainability and the environment, President Kyle signed the American College & University Presidents' Climate Commitment in 2009.  Her support and focus on sustainability initiatives has received broad recognition, including at this year’s Environmental Virginia Symposium.  The university received the Governor’s “Bronze” Environmental Excellence Award for Environmental Project and an “Honorable Mention” Environmental Excellence Award for Environmental Program.    

President Kyle said, “I am so honored by the confidence shown me by the Board but I must say that any accomplishments during my tenure would not have been possible without the selfless dedication and hard work of our faculty and staff.  Nor could we achieve these successes without the continuing high quality of our incoming students and the unrelenting support of our wonderful alumni.  I am grateful to the Board for their strong leadership and for the opportunity to continue serving Radford University and the Commonwealth of Virginia.”

President Kyle is the sixth, and first female, president of Radford University.  She is also a member of the Board of Directors of the prestigious Fulbright Program that governs the educational exchange between Canada and the United States. She is a member of the Board of Trustees of the Roanoke Higher Education Authority and the Southwest Virginia Higher Education Center. She is also a member of the Board of Directors of the Roanoke Regional Chamber of Commerce.  In 2011, Kyle was elected president of the Big South Athletic Conference, the first woman to hold that office.  She spent more than 30 years in legal, corporate and state environments, including serving the Commonwealth since 1994, before assuming the Presidency at Radford.  
She holds a Master of Business Administration degree from the College of William and Mary and a Juris Doctorate from the University of Virginia School of Law.

Jun 7, 2012
Radford University