Frank was a member of the Fisk University Board of Trustees when he was asked to serve as the Interim President of this prominent institution of higher education in September 2015. With the oversight and support of the American Missionary Association, Fisk opened for the liberal arts education of young men and women in 1866. Over the past 150 years, the University has graduated many notable leaders, including the Honorable John Lewis, Scholar David Levering Lewis, and Poet Nikki Giovanni. But its most acclaimed graduates are William Edward Burghardt (W. E. B.) Du Bois, Class of 1888, and John Hope Franklin, Class of 1935. One of only four traditionally African-American schools with chapters of the Phi Beta Kappa Society (Morehouse, Spelman and Howard being the others), Fisk continues to rank in the top ten of black colleges and universities. Shortly after he assumed the office of Interim President of Fisk, Frank said he would “spend most of his brief tenure focused on strengthening Fisk’s financial footing and streamlining administrative practices, leaving the academic programs, which he considers to be sturdy, in the hands of the provost and faculty.”
Frank has been married to Robyn Jefferson Sims for forty years; they are the parents of Bradford Jefferson Sims, Leigh-Kirstin Sims Ali, and Franklin Hunter Sims. His sister, Patricia “Pat” Martin lives in Jefferson, Georgia, with her husband Robert Martin; his “older” brother, Marcellus Barksdale, lives in Atlanta. They all remember and venerate their parents Frank and Mary Sims and the halcyon days they spent at 737 Emily Street in Newtown. Frank enjoys playing poker, deep water fishing, and spectator sports, especially football. He is a member of Alpha Phi Alpha and Sigma Pi Phi (Boulé) Fraternities.