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Join us as we commemorate the accomplishments of Dr. Holland with the purchase of a brick paver lining the walkway surrounding the statue featuring your name and/or personal message. Click below to reserve your spot(s):

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  Jerome Holland Commemorative Statue

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During its annual Founders Day Program on February 19, 2015, DSU President Harry L. Williams announced the launching of a project to erect a memorial statue of Delaware State College (DSC) President Jerome Holland on the Dover campus. 

Dr. Holland – DSC president from 1953-1960 – is credited with providing the critical leadership needed to navigate the College through the most difficult decade of its history. Amid forces in the state that threatened to close the institution, Dr. Holland brought about improvements at DSC that ensured its survival and established a foundation that future presidents would build upon.

Dr. & Mrs. Donald and Delores Blakey kicked off the fundraising effort with a donation of $5,000 to go toward the memorial statue.  Join us as we commemorate the accomplishments of Dr. Jerome Holland with a commemorative statue that will have a prominent location on campus. 

Dr. Jerome Holland Accolades:

  • Dr. Holland he was the first African American to play football for Cornell University in 1939; and end by position, he also was one of the first African-Americans to be named as an All-American.

  • Authored a 1954 report to then-Governor Caleb Boggs, which included a study of then Delaware State College from a historical perspective, and specific recommendations to ensure the future of the then-troubled institution – most of which were adopted by the Governor.

  • Following Dr. Holland’s recommendation, in 1957 the state changed the composition of the DSC Board of Trustees to include eleven members – six appointed by the governor and five appointed by the board membership.

  • During his tenure, the quality of the faculty improved, increasing from eight doctoral faculty members in 1953-54 to 15 in 1959-60.

  • During Dr. Holland’s administration, diversity was added to the DSU family - the first white faculty members were hired and the first white students enrolled and graduated from the College.

  • Enrollment during his tenure increased from 167 students in 1953-54 to 383 in 1959-60.

  • During the Holland years, DSC received a combined $2.5 million in major capital improvement funding, resulting in construction of a men’s dormitory (Conwell Hall), the multi-purpose Memorial Hall, Kent Apartments (faculty housing), and an administrative/classroom building (now-Grossley Hall).

  • After losing its college accreditation in 1949 prior to Dr. Holland’s arrival, under his leadership the College won back its accreditation as a four-year institution in 1957.

  • Holland Administration changed the previous Dean-Registrar position, creating a separate Dean of the College (the precursor of the current-provost/vice president of academic affairs) and a Registrar.

  • Understanding the importance of alumni to the growth of the College, the Holland Administration gave birth to the first-ever Alumni Office in 1954.


Dr. Jerome Holland Statue Committee:

  • Dr. Donald Blakey, chair and alumnus
  • Vita Pickrum, senior associate vice president for Development (co-chair)
  • Delores Blakey, alumna
  • Ned Brown, alumnus
  • Robert Draine, alumnus
  • Sheila Davis, president of the DSU Alumni Association
  • Dr. Lisa Dunning, assistant vice president for Alumni Affairs and alumna
  • Dr. Reba Hollingsworth, alumna
  • Carlos Holmes, director of News Services
  • Edward “George” Lorio, associate professor of art
  • Philip Sadler, alumnus
  • Dr. Bradley Skelcher, associate provost
  • Dr. U.S. Washington, retired dean


Dr. Jerome Holland
Delaware State College President

  • Dr. Holland’s seven-year tenure came to an end in 1960, when he left to assume the presidency of then-Hampton Institute.

  • Dr. Holland was also elected to the College Football Hall of Fame in 1965.

  • In 1970 U.S. President Richard M. Nixon appointed him ambassador of Sweden, a post he would serve in for two years.

  • In 1972 Dr Holland became the first African American to sit on the board of the New York Stock Exchange, a seat he held until 1980.

  • Dr. Holland served as a board member of nine major U.S. companies, including AT&T and General Motors.

  • Dr. Holland served as the chairman of the American Red Cross from 1980 to 1985, which named its blood laboratory after him.

  • Dr. Holland died in New York City on January 13, 1985.

For more information, contact:

Office of Development