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Russell Keen, EdD - Augusta University. Augusta, GA, US

Russell Keen, EdD

Executive Vice President of Administration and Chief of Staff to the President | Augusta University


Dr. Russell Keen is an administrator with more than 20 years of experience in higher education.





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Russell Keen, EdD, is an administrator with more than 20 years of experience in higher education. As executive vice president for external relations and chief of staff to the President, Keen manages the day-to-day operations of the Office of the President and provides executive leadership to Augusta University’s departments of Communications and Marketing, Human Resources, Philanthropy and Alumni Engagement, Foundations, Government Relations, Protocol and Special Events, and Volunteer Services and Community Engagement. Keen began his career in higher education in 2001 when he served as the Director for Annual Giving at Georgia Southern University. He was later named Atlanta Regional Development Director and Associate Vice President for Government Relations for the university. Prior to his arrival at Augusta University, Keen served as Vice President for External Affairs at Georgia Southern. He has also worked for the University of Georgia’s Franklin College of Arts and Sciences and SafePath Children’s Advocacy Center.

Keen is a graduate of the 2010 Class of the Georgia Academy of Economic Development, the 2011 Class of Leadership Bulloch, the 2012 Class of Leadership Georgia, the 2012 Class of the Conservative Policy Leadership Institute, a 2014 graduate of the Protocol School of Washington and the 2016 Class of Leadership Columbia County. He also serves on the Columbia County Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors, Rotary Club of Augusta, Georgia Chamber of Commerce, Conservative Policy Leadership Institute and the Government Affairs Council of the Association of Public and Land Grant Universities. Past affiliations and community involvement include the American Heart Association (Heart Ball Chairman 2018), United Way of the CSRA Board of Directors, Statesboro Rotary Club Board of Directors and the Statesboro-Bulloch Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors. Keen is a native of the Augusta area and a graduate of Lakeside High School. He received a bachelor’s degree in finance and a master’s degree in higher education administration from Georgia Southern University and a doctor of higher education degree from the University of Georgia.

Areas of Expertise (5)

Higher Education

Public Relations




Education (3)

University of Georgia: Ed.D., Higher Education Management 2019

Georgia Southern University: M.Ed., Higher Education Administration 2014

Georgia Southern Universit: B.B.A., Business Administration, Specializing in Finance 1999

Affiliations (5)

  • Columbia County Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors
  • Rotary Club of Augusta
  • Georgia Chamber of Commerce
  • Conservative Policy Leadership Institute
  • Government Affairs Council of the Association of Public and Land Grant Universities

Media Appearances (5)

Via Cognitive Health opens new facility, enhancing care for Alzheimer’s patients

WJBF  tv


June is Alzheimer’s and Brain Awareness Month, and today marks a major step forward in the battle against the disease. Via Cognitive Health held a ribbon cutting ceremony Thursday morning for its much-anticipated facility. They are a nonprofit organization in the CSRA that has served families facing Alzheimer’s since 1996. They’ve only been able to do this at their location on Central Avenue, known as the Jud C. Hickey Center. But thanks to generous donors, they now have a brand-new facility to provide even better services. “We have had a long journey, and we’ve met with many, many different amazing partners throughout the community, throughout the country to try to design and plan a space that’s really going to meet the needs of what our program is and our curriculum,” said Executive Director Jennifer Pennington. Via Cognitive Health has been working to get the facility over the last 8 years, leading to a brand -new facility with several features. “We have built a gym for exercise, we have an art room, we have a work room where you might build a birdhouse or fix a bicycle,” said Janet McKnight. “We have a game room, we have a salon where you might get your haircut or shampooed that day. We also have a conference room where we’re able to give the families support through education and support groups.” According to Pennington, there are currently an estimated 10,000 people in the Augusta community living with Alzheimer’s, and 200,000 battling the disease across the state of Georgia. “It’s often very silent–people don’t like to talk about it a lot,” Pennington said. “People will just hide away in their homes, and they start to pull back from their normal social life–and that’s not what needs to be done.” City leaders attending the ceremony say it’s a step forward in caring for patients with the disease. “1 in 3 senior adults are diagnosed with this, and this is an issue that is affecting the lives of not only Georgians and Augustans, but our entire country and our world,” said Dr. Russell Keen. Keen is the incoming new President at Augusta University, and says the institution continues to do extensive research into cognitive health.

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Dr. Russell Keen named Augusta University EVP for administration

Grice Connect  online


“I have been honored to work alongside Dr. Keel, the Augusta University leadership team, and my colleagues throughout the enterprise since 2015. The university has grown tremendously since then, and we continue to be excited for the future,” Dr. Russel Keen said. “We remain focused on innovative solutions and new partnerships to enhance the success of our students and faculty as we strive to reach our goal of 16,000 students by 2030.”

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WRDW Morning Mix Mingle at the Mural

WRDW  tv


Mornig Mix at WRDW talks about the new Augusta University mural.

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Augusta University presents new mural just in time for graduation

The Augusta Press  online


Arts students, volunteers and staff from Augusta University excitedly presented a brand new mural in Downtown Augusta on the corner of Reynolds and 11th Street. After months of planning, collaborating and painting, Augusta University’s Art and Design Department proudly unveiled the 151 inches high and 660 inches wide mural with hopes of making the community a little more colorful. As the mural is positioned directly across the street from AU’s partner, the Georgia Cyber Innovation and Training Center, Russell Keen, executive vice president for administration and chief of staff for AU President Brooks Keel, believes the piece will make community members proud of their university and its growing efforts. “This mural represents how far we’ve come in terms of community engagement as a university – how we’ve embraced the community and how it’s embraced us,” Keen said. “It shows how we can work together to beautify downtown and make it more appealing for everybody.”

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Augusta University celebrates opening of storefront in JA Discovery Center

The Augusta Press  online


Augusta University celebrated the official opening of a storefront at the Junior Achievement Discovery Center with a ribbon cutting ceremony on Wednesday evening, March 27. Following the grand opening of the JA Discovery Center on Jan. 11, a statewide program created for middle schoolers, over 3,500 students from Richmond and Columbia County have enjoyed a day-long field trip to learn about business and financial literacy. In preparing for the future, middle school visitors are also taught about real world budgets and the benefits of pursuing higher education by visiting the Augusta University and Augusta Technical College storefronts. By applying concepts learned in classes, students from the CSRA are able to take part in simulated, immersive experiences with nearly 20 storefronts, thanks to the efforts of several volunteers. Russell Keen, executive vice president for administration and chief of staff for Keel, said various staff members collaborated to make the storefront a reality, and created a “fabulous” and educational simulation. “What we’re finding is that the sooner we can get it ingrained in children that they actually can achieve higher education, the more they can achieve their dreams if they just see it,” he said. “This allows them to really envision themselves through their education … and it’s really fun, which is cool.”

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Articles (1)

Presidents Assuming Office during Times of Fiscal Strain

University of Georgia Dissertation


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