May 27, 2024


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Salem Academy and College Shepherds in a New Era with Appointment of President Dr. Summer McGee |

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C., June 10, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — Today, the Salem Academy and College Board of Trustees announces the appointment of Summer Johnson McGee, Ph.D., CPH as the 21st President of the institution. Dr. McGee is the founding and current Dean of the School of Health Sciences at the University of New Haven in West Haven, Connecticut and will assume her new role at Salem starting July 1, 2021.

As a highly awarded leader and a passionate advocate for women’s education, Dr. McGee will be a source of inspiration and advocacy to the young women of the Academy and College. Dr. McGee received the American College of Healthcare Executives Distinguished Faculty Regents Award in 2014, was named one of the Top 50 U.S. Healthcare Management Professors in 2015, was recognized as one of Connecticut Magazine’s “40 Under 40” in 2019 and received the University of New Haven’s Excellence in Teaching award in 2017.

Dr. McGee was selected by the Board of Trustees following an extensive, nationwide search with input from Salem’s faculty, staff, and students.

“Dr. McGee has a deep appreciation for the history of Salem as the nation’s oldest institution for educating women and embraces the Academy and College’s focus on developing future leaders who will make a bold impact locally, regionally, and globally,” McDara Folan, Chair of Salem Board of Trustees, said. “Our search committee spent a great deal of time and energy finding the right leader with the right qualities and experience as well as a strong passion for educating women. We are confident Dr. McGee is the perfect fit for the Academy and College.”

Earlier this year, Salem College announced the launch of a new, innovative Health Leadership focus for fall 2021 to prepare the next generation of women leaders in fields across the health ecosystem. Salem Academy, a private boarding and day school for grades 9-12, shares a campus with Salem College and is one of the nation’s premier all-girls schools with proven expertise in educating young women through a rigorous, highly-personalized academic model, focused on confidence-building co-curricular activities, and lifelong learning tools. Both schools place high value on academic excellence and women’s leadership.

Folan and the members of the Board thanked Dr. Susan Henking for serving as Interim President of Salem since May 2020. Her tenure allowed the board time to find the ideal new President to launch a new era for Salem Academy and College.

“I am deeply honored to be selected as the next leader of Salem Academy and College. This is an incredibly exciting time for the institution to celebrate its history while at the same time imagining its future in bold new ways,” Dr. McGee said. “Salem is uniquely positioned to develop the next generation of women leaders one woman at a time.”

As the Founding Dean of the School of Health Sciences at the University of New Haven, Dr. McGee accomplished an ambitious strategic plan overseeing the creation of more than a dozen new in-person and online undergraduate and graduate level academic programs, including one of the only professional doctoral programs in health sciences in the nation. Under her leadership, the University of New Haven’s healthcare management graduate program became the ninth largest in the nation, including its executive program at Yale-New Haven Hospital, both of which were accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education and became the only program of its kind in Southern New England.  She also led the University of New Haven’s COVID-19 response and became a sought after academic and media expert related to COVID-19 in the last year.

Founded in 1772 in Winston-Salem, NC, Salem Academy and College is celebrating its 250th Anniversary beginning in September with a variety of events throughout the 2021–22 academic year.

“Dr. Summer McGee is uniquely qualified to help lead Salem Academy and College into the next 250 years. Her experience as the founding Dean of the School of Health Sciences has honed her knowledge, skills, and abilities to bring about both schools’ transformations,” said Elizabeth Baird, incoming Chair of the Salem Board of Trustees and Chair of the Presidential Search Committee. “Dr. McGee brings enthusiasm, energy, and a clear vision to the campus, and I cannot wait to work beside her.”

Dr. McGee holds a PhD in Bioethics & Health Policy from The Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health and graduated summa cum laude with a BA in Philosophy and a BA in Bioethics from Indiana University Bloomington (IU). She also is a graduate of the Harvard University Graduate School of Education Management Development Program. Before joining the University of New Haven, Dr. McGee served on the faculty of Loyola University Chicago, the University of Kansas School of Medicine, and Albany Medical College. 

About Salem Academy and College

Salem Academy and College is the oldest educational institution for girls and women in the United States. Founded in 1772 in Winston-Salem, NC, Salem has educated and prepared women to lead, shatter expectations, and rise to the challenges of their time—resulting in generations of women leaders and influencers in leadership roles throughout the world. Today, Salem Academy and Salem College continues to be focused on educating future generations of global leaders. For more information about Salem Academy, please visit For more information about Salem College, please visit

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SOURCE Salem College