Dr. Rodney S. Ridley, Sr. is Vice-President, Associate Provost and Full Professor at Alvernia University (AU) as well as the Chief Operating Officer of the O’Pake Institute for Economic Development & Entrepreneurship at Alvernia University. As a member of the AU Senior leadership team, he is intricately involved in launching and implementing the Reading CollegeTowne initiative, which is designed to transform both the university (i.e. implement a new model for how a regional institution of higher education will operate) and revitalize downtown Reading. The O’Pake Institute was redesigned in 2019 under his leadership and serves as a catalyst for experiential education, entrepreneurship, business expansion and regional economic development. He is the founder of the O’Pake Student Fellows Program, O’Pake Business Incubator, the AU Technology Transfer Office, O’Pake Professional Mentor Program and the AU Micro-Grant Fund, as well as oversee the AU Industry & Economic Development Outreach activity.