Office of the President

Clemson Board Approves Five-Year Contract Extension for President Jim Clements


One of the nation’s most sought-after presidents in higher education, President Jim Clements will remain at Clemson University for the foreseeable future. Clemson University’s Board of Trustees on Friday approved a five-year contract extension for Clements during its Fall 2021 Quarterly Meeting.

The 15th president in Clemson’s history, Clements assumed the role on Dec. 31, 2013, and the University has accomplished extraordinary successes under his leadership during the past eight years, including record-breaking numbers in admissions and enrollment, retention and graduation rates, fundraising, research, athletics, and national academic awards.

Since his arrival, he has led the way in helping to raise more than $1.2 billion in private funds and increasing the value of Clemson Foundation Endowment to more than $1 billion.  Athletic successes during Clements time at Clemson include a pair of football national championships, six College Football Playoff appearances, two ACC titles in men’s soccer, an ACC championship in softball’s first full season, and a host of other championships and accomplishments. 

“Clemson is on an incredible trajectory in ensuring its students succeed in the classroom and in the world once they leave here,” said Board Chair Kim Wilkerson. “This five-year extension is a reflection of Jim’s commitment to Clemson and the Board’s commitment to what we believe is the best university president in the country.”

During Clements tenure, for the first time, Clemson has been named a Research 1 University by the Carnegie Classification for Institutions of Higher Education and has since been reaffirmed. Approximately $1 billion in new or renovated facilities have been constructed in the past eight years, including the Wilber O. and Ann Powers College of Business, the Allen N. Reeves Football Complex, the Snow Family Outdoor Fitness and Wellness Complex, the Andy Quattlebaum Outdoor Education Center, the Watt Family Innovation Center, and Douthit Hills, the largest construction project in university history. Additionally, under his leadership Clemson has added a pair of high-priority facilities requested by students and employees – the Samuel J. Cadden Chapel and the Early Childhood Education Center.

Clements is a nationally recognized leader in higher education who serves on the board of directors of the American Council on Education, the executive committee for the Council of Competitiveness, the Council of Presidents for the Association of Governing Boards and the College Football Playoff Board of Managers. He also is a member of the Special Olympics International Board of Directors. Clements previously served as the Chair of the Board for the Association of Public & Land-Grant Universities.

Clements developed and launched the President’s Leadership Institute, a nine-month leadership development program designed to support and develop professional and personal leadership within a diverse and inclusive community of faculty and staff at Clemson. Now in its sixth year, PLI has provided professional growth opportunities for 125 emerging, high-potential, and high-performing members of the faculty and staff of Clemson.

“The years since Beth and I arrived at Clemson in 2013 have been the most rewarding of my life,” Clements said. “I look forward to continuing the momentum we have achieved. While there is work to do, I remain dedicated to the pursuit of excellence in the classroom, research labs and on the athletic fields.”