News Item

Retiring Lander President Receives SC’s Highest Civilian Honor

May 05, 2015

SC State Senators Billy O'Dell (left) and Floyd Nicholson present Lander President Dr. Daniel Ball (center) with The Order of the Palmetto.


In a surprise announcement during Lander University’s May 2 commencement exercises, retiring President Dr. Daniel Ball was presented with the Order of the Palmetto. The award is South Carolina’s highest civilian honor itself and is presented for extraordinary lifetime achievement and service to the state and nation.

State Senators Billy O’Dell and Floyd Nicholson, along with Lander’s Board of Trustees, presented the Order of the Palmetto to Ball on behalf of Governor Nikki Haley. In a letter to Ball, Governor Haley wrote, “From your outstanding leadership as president of Lander University to your extensive involvement in civic affairs, you have demonstrated your commitment to excellence in all you do. In the world of making a positive difference, you have been an incredibly effective leader to those around you.”

A native of Missouri, Ball has served as the 12th president of Lander since 2000. He will retire on June 30. His accomplishments as president are varied and are many, ranging from expansion of academic, student affairs and athletic programs, to diversity in enrollment and property acquisition.

Statements made in support of Ball’s nomination for the Order of the Palmetto

•    “Dan’s vision and efforts toward the success and accomplishments of Lander have not only benefited Greenwood County, but the entire state as well. During his tenure, he has exhibited excellent leadership abilities, as well as compassion and devotion to the students of Lander.”

•    “Dr. Ball brought a vision to Lander in 2000, and 15 years later, the campus is one of beauty that has grown in so many ways. Quality and value have defined everything that he has accomplished at Lander and in the Greenwood community.”

•    “For the past 15 years, Dr. Ball has distinguished himself as one of the state’s most dedicated, passionate and principled leaders. His leadership has been transformative for the economy and educational landscape of the Greenwood area and beyond. On every regard, from personal character to professional achievement, he deserves the honor that the Order of the Palmetto represents.”