CEO Retirement

Teresa Dreyfuss, superintendent/president of Rio Hondo College (RHC) in California, plans to retire at the end of the 2018-19 academic year on June 30, 2019. She helped lead the college through the recent recession, executed close to $300 million in construction projects, opened three regional campuses and created a historic four-year degree in automotive technology.

Dreyfuss, an immigrant from Taiwan, started at RHC as an accountant in 1987 and rose through the ranks to become interim superintendent/president in 2012 and assuming the post permanently a year later.

In 2013-14, Rio Hondo College became one of a select group of community colleges to host the Pathway to Law School program, which guides students from community college, through four- year universities, to one of eight top California law schools. Earlier this year, the college’s program received the Diversity Champion Award from California LAW for excellence.

In 2017, the college created the Rio Promise, which offers a free year of tuition and priority registration to recent public high school graduates in its service area.

Meanwhile, from 2014-15 to 2017-18, the number of associate degrees conferred increased by 80 percent and the number of students who received certificates increased by 215 percent. RHC also expanded its associate degrees for transfer – which guarantee admission to a California State University campus – from four to 27.

“Teresa Dreyfuss is one of those rare individuals who understands both the fine details and the big picture,” said Madeline Shapiro, president of the RHC board of trustees. “Her passion and leadership have translated into a legacy of success for Rio Hondo College.”


Mark Erickson, president of Northampton Community College (NCC) in Pennsylvania, was appointed as board chair of Community Colleges for International Development. His one-year term will begin in September. He has served as a member of the board since his arrival at the college in 2012.

Mark Curtis-Chávez is now provost of the College of DuPage in Illinois. He comes from Lone Star College-CyFair in Texas, where he most recently was special assistant to the president.

Stefani Coverson is vice president of human resources and compliance at Clark College in Washington. She is currently human resources director at Seattle University.

Kathleen Plinske is now executive vice president and provost at Valencia College in Florida. Previously, she was president of Valencia’s Osceola Campus since 2010, oversaw construction of the college’s Lake Nona Campus in 2012 and was instrumental in mobilizing community and legislative support for the Poinciana Campus, which opened in 2017.

Lori Przymusinski is now vice chancellor for student services at Oakland Community College in Michigan. She previously was interim vice chancellor and also dean of campus affairs.

At Ivy Tech Community College in Indiana, John Cowles will serve as vice chancellor for student success for its Indianapolis campus, as of September 17. Kevin Keathley will serve as dean of information technology at the Indianapolis campus, effective September 3. Cowles has served as dean of student success and retention for Grand Rapids Community College (Michigan) since 2013. Keathley is currently director of cloud delivery at Ontario Systems in Indiana.

At Itawamba Community College (ICC) in Mississippi: Tyler Camp is now special assistant to the president; Jinnie Coleman is the new business manager at the Fulton Campus; Melissa Haab has been appointed dean of enrollment services; Jake Hartfield has been selected as coordinator of student activities; Mande Miller has become director of the Tupelo Campus and advising; Bobby Solomon has been named registrar; and Nina Strother has been promoted to director of community relations.

Camp previously was director of development and community relations specialist at ICC. Coleman comes to ICC from the state auditor’s office where she was a field audit specialist. Haab served as dean of enrollment management at Coastal Alabama Community College. Miller’s service at ICC since July 2002 has included counselor and director of the advising center. Solomon previously served as campus dean for academic affairs at Savannah Technical College. Strother joined the ICC staff in 2016 as director of graphic design and photography.

At Rock Valley College in Illinois, Jonathan Hardbarger is now the college’s dean of aviation, engineering and apprenticeship, and Garry Krause is vice president of workforce development. Hardbarger was most recently director of career and technical education program development at Mohave Community College in Arizona. Krause comes from Blackhawk Technical College in Wisconsin, where he was dean of advanced manufacturing, transportation, information technology and apprenticeship since 2013.

At Seminole State College of Florida, Frank Bonjione is now associate vice president of academic foundations; Cheryl Cicotti is associate vice president of business, health and public safety; and Michele Cuomo is dean of arts and communications. Bonjione previously was as associate dean and interim associate vice president, Cicotti was dean of nursing and Cuomo most recently served as dean of arts and humanities at Montgomery County Community College in Pennsylvania.

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