Karen Ferguson, Ph.D.

Interim President

Salem University

Karen Ferguson currently serves as Interim President of Salem University after having served as Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs. Previously, Dr. Ferguson served as Provost and VP of Strategic Development at Colorado State University Global. Dr. Ferguson leads several academic and operational departments ensuring a clear and strategic focus on student success and retention, continuous innovation and transformation, and academic quality.

Prior to her current position, Karen worked on federal and state grants, served as an Army Research Institute Doctoral Fellow, and held several faculty and administrative positions in non-traditional higher education. Combining her military and academic leadership skills with her passion for access and technology, Karen is a transformative academic leader and learning professional focused on achieving strategic results, improving individual and institutional performance, and increasing organizational effectiveness. A non-traditional student herself, Karen is dedicated to ensuring access to a quality education for students of all backgrounds and academic ability.

Dr. Ferguson holds a Bachelor’s in Workforce Development from Southern Illinois University and a Masters, with honors, in Human Resource Development from the University of Louisville. She also earned her Ph.D. in Education Leadership and Organization Development from the University of Louisville in 2006. She is the recipient of the Wagner Award for Leadership in Distance Learning. Dr. Ferguson volunteers on advisory boards, actively pursues action research, and truly enjoys innovating to meet the needs of current and future students.