Franklin College trustees renew Prather’s contract

Kerry Prather will serve as Franklin College’s president through at least June 30, 2026.

The Franklin College Board of Trustees voted to extend his contract citing his leadership in moving the college forward, enhancing the student experience and furthering the college mission, according to a news release from the college.

“The Franklin College community will continue to benefit from President Prather’s leadership and willingness to implement bold changes in an ever-evolving and quickly changing higher education environment,” Peter T. Cangany, Jr., chair of the Franklin College Board of Trustees and 1980 alumnus, said in the statement. “The Board of Trustees is looking forward to continual engagement with President Prather in the many strategic discussions that will chart the future of Franklin College. Something special is happening at Franklin College.”

Since being appointed acting president in January 2020 and president one month later, Prather has had his contract extended two times. Pather has accomplished a lot in his short time in office so far. He’s established the college’s digital fluency program and Center for Tech Innovation and the Johnson Memorial Health Athletic Annex; launched an esports program; and created a digital fluency initiative, the release says.

He also led the college to its most successful fundraising year ever in 2020 and welcomed the largest incoming class in five years, in the midst of a global pandemic. Prather has expanded the college’s diversity, equity and inclusion efforts, pledging to graduate leaders capable of and committed to making our communities, our states and our nation more fair, more just and more compassionate, the release says.

Prather is just getting started, he said.

“I am humbled by the confidence of the Board of Trustees and excited to continue the momentum we have begun at Franklin College over the past three years. We will be announcing a new strategic plan over the coming weeks that will provide a bold, ambitious vision for the institution’s future,” Prather said in the statement. “Cindy and I look forward to continuing our work with our colleagues on campus and our alumni, friends and corporate partners to further enhance the distinctive student experience at Franklin and position the institution for an even more successful and prosperous future.”

Over his 39-year career at Franklin College, Prather has served as assistant dean of students, associate director of admissions, acting vice president for enrollment management and acting vice president for administration, the release says.

During his 36-year tenure as head men’s basketball coach, Prather joined an elite group of collegiate coaches with over 500 career wins, and his teams made multiple appearances in national tournament competition. He was named Director of Athletics in 1989. Under his leadership, Franklin College expanded athletic opportunities for students to the current level of 21 intercollegiate sports and upgraded and built new athletic facilities throughout the campus, the release says.