2020 Speaker | Angela L. Walker Franklin
Angela L. Walker Franklin
President, Des Moines University
Angela L. Walker Franklin, who became Des Moines University’s 15th president in the spring of 2011, is a native of McCormick, South Carolina and a Phi Beta Kappa and magna cum laude graduate of Furman University. A licensed clinical psychologist, she completed her Ph.D. in clinical psychology at Emory University, followed by a year-long clinical internship at Grady Memorial Hospital.
Angela L. Walker Franklin has worked in higher education for more than 25 years. Prior to her arrival at DMU, she held faculty and administrative positions at both Morehouse School of Medicine in Atlanta, Georgia and Meharry Medical College in Nashville, Tennessee.
Since becoming the 15th President of Des Moines University, Dr. Franklin has published the university history entitled, “Now is the Time, Des Moines is the Place” which chronicles a 100+ year history of training health care professionals. She has established institutional goals and priorities for the future and recently launched Purple and Proud, a $25 million dollar fund raising campaign. Most recently she also announced the decision to relocate the campus to West Des Moines where the university purchased 88 acres of land.
Dr. Franklin has become actively involved in the Des Moines Community, now serving on the boards of Bankers Trust, The Greater Des Moines Partnership and The Harkin National Advisory Council. She is also Chair of the Assembly of Presidents of the American Association of Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine (AACOM). In addition, Dr. Franklin is a former board member of the nationally recognized Association of Academic Health Centers (AAHC), United Way of Central Iowa, the Science Center of Iowa, and past Chair of the Greater Des Moines Partnership Workforce Development/Education Board and United Way Health Cabinet.
Awards she has received include: 2017 American Psychological Association Training Advisory Committee Special Award, 2016 Martin Luther King Jr. Achievement Award from the Iowa Department of Human Rights, the 2015 Mary McLeod Bethune Award (Educator of the Year) from the Iowa Juneteenth Observance Committee, the 2014 Women of Influence Award from the Des Moines Business Record, the 2014 Inspire Award from Dress for Success, and the 2013 African American History Maker Award from the African American Museum of Iowa.
Dr. Franklin is an inspirational leader and author of her 2014 published memoir, “An Unconventional Journey… An Unlikely Choice,” which chronicles her journey to the college presidency and lessons learned in leadership. Dr. Franklin has been featured in several local and national publications and speaks locally and around the country on the topics of women leaders, principles of leadership, and building a culturally competent and diverse workforce.