This work is a tribute to all the amazing encouragers, caring hearts, and relationships that have created who I am today.  My desire is to pay all of that forward by leading and encouraging others in their quest to feel value, to achieve goals, to realize dreams so that my gracious gifts may leave this world a better place. That is the ultimate success.



Dr. Ruth Nichols began her education career teaching kindergarten in Vidalia, Louisiana and she’s spent most of her 30-year education career in university leadership roles. She earned degrees from Copiah-Lincoln Community College, the University of Southern Mississippi and Clemson University. Before coming to Alcorn, she held several high-ranking positions, including president, at North Georgia Technical College as well.


Dr. Nichols is a certified business and life coach through Wainwright Global and is currently researching successful workforce development models that focus on soft skills and work ethics of the ever-evolving and transitioning new workforce. Nichols was named one of Mississippi’s 50 Leading Business Women in 2014 and was chosen as a “Caring Woman in a Position of Leadership” by Merit Health – Natchez in 2015. In 2015 Dr. Nichols became very involved in bringing the ACT Certified Work Ready Community to Adams County, the State of Mississippi and the Miss-Lou Region.  She serves on the National Advisory Board for Work Ready and regularly makes presentations to communities, conferences, and economic/community development groups.


Dr. Nichols loves to get involved in community development, economic development, and workforce development; including partnering with agencies, individuals and community groups to design, implement and nurture local initiatives to fruition. She works closely with community economic developers and chambers of commerce to establish initiatives to improve the Miss-Lou region and beyond. Some ongoing initiatives include the Entrepreneur Academy in four counties, Miss-Lou Regional Certified Work Ready Region, Friday Forums, Southern Hospitality/Customer Service Academy, Possibilities Tour (empty building project), and concurrent enrollment with community colleges.



  • Natchezian of the Year – 2016

  • One of Mississippi’s 50 Leading Businesswomen – 2014

  • Institutions of Higher Learning (IHL) Mississippi Diversity Award, 2011

  • American College of Testing (ACT) National Advisory Council for Certified Work Ready Communities

  • Rotarian Paul Harris Fellow

  • Graduate of Delta Regional Authority’s Executive Leadership Institute

  • Created FREE (Freedom Requires Education and Employment) a reentry program for the incarcerated

  • Graduate of University of Central Arkansas Community Development Institute

  • Graduate of Penn State’s Summer Leadership Program

  • American Association of Community Colleges Committee on Student Services and Committee on Marketing member

  • Created and implemented Wee Worship (a children’s church program) for First Baptist Church, Natchez, MS

  • Copyrighted curriculum “Workforce Excellence for New Hires”

  • NRA Certified Enhanced Carry Instructor

  • Led the Miss-Lou Region in becoming the first Certified Work Ready Community in Mississippi and the first in the country to cross state lines.

  • United Way Board Member

  • Member Natchez Adams School Board

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