President & Chief Executive Officer (Interim)
Michael J. Hester was named by the UNCF Special Programs Corporation (UNCFSP) Board of Directors as the Interim President & CEO in early April 2011 after serving as Vice President & COO since August 2004.
Mr. Hester is a seasoned, visionary leader and analytical business strategist with over 18 years of experience in managing large-scale programs for nonprofits and educational institutions. In addition to having expertise in strategic change management and organizational processes, Mr. Hester has additionally demonstrated expertise in connecting minority institutions of higher education to contracting opportunities in the federal marketplace.
In the early phase of his career, Mr. Hester gained invaluable experience in all facets and levels of education administration ranging from K-12, community college, four-year institution and STEM educational policy at the federal level. He has held a number of administrative positions in higher education from Special Assistant to the Vice President of Academic Affairs and Assessment Coordinator at Saint Augustine's College; Program Evaluator for the Wake County Public School System in Raleigh, NC; and Director of Institutional Research and Planning for Guilford Technical Community College in Greensboro, NC.
Mr. Hester continued his work in minority education grants and contracts administration during his tenure with NASA Headquarters in Washington, DC. While there, he managed multiple projects valued at over $12M for the NASA Minority University Research and Education Division and supervised a 37-member team of analysts.
Since assuming the role of UNCFSP Interim President & CEO, Mr. Hester is eager to apply his experience in education administration, business management, strategic planning and federal contracting to chart new enriching paths for UNCFSP that ensure the continued viability of the minority education community.
Mr. Hester graduated from Duke University with a Bachelor of Arts in English and received the Master of Public Administration degree from North Carolina Central University. He has served as an adjunct faculty member at Southeastern University, Guilford Technical Community College, and Saint Augustine's College.
Chief Development Officer
Lamont Hames was recently appointed Chief Development Officer of UNCFSP and reports directly to the CEO. In this role he is responsible for overall business strategy and development, organizational leadership, project management, innovation, and assists in resolving complex challenges impacting the Historically Black College and University (HBCU) and Minority Serving Institutions (MSI) community.
As a seasoned executive with over 20 years of experience, Mr. Hames brings a unique combination of executive level federal government and private industry experience. He spearheads policy and initiatives with Federal and Congressional stakeholders to enable an inclusive environment that allows HBCU/MSI's to continue thriving in a rapidly changing higher education, business and technology marketplace that enables scale, sustainability, and accountability, while achieving results.
Mr. Hames is expanding UNCFSP's mission by executing results-driven strategic partnership agreements with national and international public, commercial, philanthropic, and non-profit sectors to enable UNCFSP to develop programs beneficial to its member institutions.
Prior to his appointment, Mr. Hames worked over five years in private industry serving in senior level capacities and reported directly to the CEO's of two separate high-tech small businesses in the federal IT, multi-media, and management consulting marketplace. His efforts yielded successful results, customer expansion, and new business accounts with agencies ranging from Department of Transportation, NASA, Department of Justice, FEMA, and United States Postal Service to name a few. As a result, he led and closed over $30M in business awards and maintained excellent customer ratings.
Prior to entering the private sector, Mr. Hames spent fifteen distinguished years as a public servant with his most recent position serving as Chief of Staff for the Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization at NASA Headquarters. There he designed policy, advocacy, outreach, and business development initiatives to enable its supplier diversity program to achieve a record $3.6 Billion dollars in awards to small businesses.
Mr. Hames consults with major corporations on effective Supplier Diversity programs and he speaks at major industry meetings and conferences throughout the country and internationally. Mr. Hames is a graduate of two HBCU's having received his B.A. in Computer Science from St. Augustine's College and M.S. in Management Information Systems from Bowie State University.