Ulysses Hammond to retire from vice president post at Connecticut College

In this 2012 Day file photo, Ulysses Hammond is shown in his office at Connecticut College. (Peter M. Weber/ Special to The Day)
In this 2012 Day file photo, Ulysses Hammond is shown in his office at Connecticut College. (Peter M. Weber/ Special to The Day)

New London — Ulysses Hammond, vice president for administration at Connecticut College, will retire from his position on Oct. 30, the college announced Monday.

Over his 15 years at Conn, Hammond, 64, has led improvements to college classrooms, research spaces, dormitories, food services and events, overseeing $100 million in capital projects, the college said in a letter to college staff and students. These included the creation of the Ann and Lee Higdon Fitness Center, the expansion of New London Hall into a state-of-the-art science center, the design and construction of the Zachs Hillel House and the renovation of the Charles E. Shain Library, the college said.

He has also distinguished himself in the New London region and in the state through his service on various community organizations, especially those that benefit youth, the college said.

For 10 years he was president of the Martin Luther King Jr. Scholarship Trust Fund and served for four years as chairman of the board of Lawrence + Memorial Hospital. In 2005, he served as chairman of the boards of both the United Way of Southeastern Connecticut and the Chamber of Commerce of Eastern Connecticut, the same year he was diagnosed and treated for prostate cancer.

He has been cancer-free since completing his treatment, he said.

Hammond currently serves as a member of the Rotary Club of New London and as corporator of the Chelsea Groton Bank, and is also a member of the boards of directors of the Connecticut Hospital Association, The Connecticut Mirror and the Thames Club.

Hammond, who lives in Waterford with his wife, Christine, said he felt now was the right time to retire.

"I still have my good health, and I want to spend more time with my wife and grandkids," he said. "My wife and I plan to stay in this area. We feel this is a great region and the people of this region have really embraced us."

Before coming to Conn in 1999, Hammond was the chief executive officer of the state court for Washington, D.C., and was the first African American to administer an appellate and general jurisdiction court system in the country.

At Conn, he has supervised more than 280 employees in the departments of human resources, facilities management, campus safety, dining services, events and catering and auxiliary services. Hammond has also served as the college’s coordinator for community and legal affairs.

Hammond said he believes his most significant contribution to Conn was "being the face of the college to southeastern Connecticut and to the state.

"It’s the relationships I’ve been able to build over the years on behalf of the college," he said.

He is also proud of having overseen the technological transformation and modernization of several campus departments, including human resources, campus safety, dining services, events, catering, the print shop and post office, among others.

He said he has no immediate plans for his retirement, other than "to figure out what retirement is for me."

"I don’t know what’s in store," he said.

Awards he has received include the eastern chamber’s William Crawford Distinguished Service Award in 2012; the Willard McRea Community Diversity Award from Liberty Bank in 2010; and the Strong Men & Strong Women Excellence in Leadership Award from Dominion Resources in 2008; and the Connecticut Man of the Year Award in 2006.

Conn President Katherine Bergeron said Hammond will be greatly missed.

"He has been an indispensable member of my senior administrative team and a trusted advisor to me," she said. "As a mentor to many students, faculty and staff on campus, he has shown a profound loyalty and commitment to Connecticut College. He has improved the quality of our lives here in ways that are hard to measure."

j.benson@theday.com

Twitter: @BensonJudy

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