Tony Allen, a longtime banking executive and Wilmington civic leader, has been named provost at Delaware State University.

Allen, 47, who is Bank of America’s head of corporate reputation and chairman of the Wilmington Education Improvement Commission, will start Aug. 15 as chief academic officer at one of America’s 107 historically black colleges and universities.

He will head a faculty of 212 professors and 21 departments that serve more than 4,600 undergraduate students at the Dover-based school.

Tony Allen, left, chairman of the Wilmington Education

Delaware State announced the hiring of Allen in a surprise 5 p.m. news release. The lengthy release included quotes from Allen and three Delaware political dignitaries — former Vice President Joe Biden, Gov. John Carney and U.S. Rep. Lisa Blunt Rochester.

The school’s president, Harry L. Williams, called Allen’s hiring as the school’s No. 2 administrator a pivotal move, saying Allen is respected locally and nationally for his keen intellect and strong character.

What former Vice President Joe Biden thinks about the hire, at Newsworks.org

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