Volunteer State Community College Presidential Search Advisory Committee appointed. Public forum set for Jan. 26.

front sign for Volunteer State Community College

NASHVILLE (Jan. 19, 2024) – The Search Advisory Committee leading the Tennessee Board of Regents' search for the next president of Volunteer State Community College has been appointed and will meet for its orientation session and a public forum Friday, Jan. 26, 2024.

Board of Regents Vice Chair Emily J. Reynolds will chair the 19-member search committee. Board Members MaryLou Apple, Layah Garton and Todd Kaestner will also serve as committee members, along with representatives of the college’s faculty, staff, students and alumni, and business and civic leaders from across its northern Middle Tennessee service area. The full list of search committee members is below.

The public forum, which provides the public and campus community an overview of the search process, will be held virtually via Zoom teleconferencing, starting at 1:00 p.m. CT Jan. 26. To join the Zoom forum at that time, click here and enter the meeting ID and passcode below: https://academic-search.zoom.us/j/84418418357?pwd=05Zozc1cM1JWpkljUD492Z3s2bSm0Y.1&from=addon

Meeting ID: 84418418357
Passcode: 193979

Anyone needing assistance may contact Mary Ann Hammonds, Executive Assistant to the TBR Chancellor, at maryann.hammonds@tbr.edu.

The search committee will review applicants and nominees and recommend finalists for the presidency. The finalists will be announced and introduced to the community in campus public forums. After the forums, TBR Chancellor Flora W. Tydings will conduct final interviews and review input from the campus community and the public to select one candidate for recommendation to the Board of Regents, which will appoint the president.

The next president will succeed Dr. Orinthia T. Montague, the college’s fourth president, who passed away unexpectedly on Sept. 22. Dr. Russ Deaton, TBR executive vice chancellor for policy and strategy, is serving as interim president. The president is the college’s chief executive officer.

The Board of Regents approved the criteria for the next president during a special called meeting Oct. 20. The Board invites applications and nominations for the position by March 25, and anticipates the next president will be in office by July 1. Full details – including the presidential criteria, how to apply and submit nominations, information about the college, and the public forum access information – are posted on the Vol State presidential search webpage at https://www.tbr.edu/hr/executivesearches/president-volunteer-state-community-college.

Volunteer State is one of the 13 public community colleges and 24 colleges of applied technology in the College System of Tennessee, governed by the Tennessee Board of Regents. Vol State is a comprehensive, two-year post-secondary institution with its main campus in Gallatin, branch campuses in Cookeville, Livingston, and Springfield, and other teaching sites in its 11-county primary service area. The college enrolls approximately 7,000 credit-seeking students and has more than 450 full-time employees. Additional information is available on the college’s website at volstate.edu.

Members of the Search Advisory Committee

  • Regent Emily J. Reynolds, Board of Regents Vice Chair, Search Committee Chair
  • Regent MaryLou Apple, Board of Regents
  • Regent Todd Kaestner, Board of Regents
  • Regent Layah Garton, Board of Regents
  • Laura Black, Associate Professor of English & Speaker of Faculty Council, Faculty Representative
  • Leah Frauendienst, Associate Professor of Mathematics, Faculty Representative
  • Maia Dennis, Student Representative
  • Sam Garrett, Student Representative
  • Leah Balli, Director of Admissions, Staff Representative
  • Emily Short, Vice President for Student Services, Staff Representative
  • Karen Mitchell, Vice President of Resource Development & Executive Director, VSCC Foundation, Staff Representative

Alumni, Business, & Community Representatives

  • Kim Baker, CEO, Gallatin Chamber of Commerce
  • David Gregory, Former TBR Chancellor & VSCC Foundation Past Chair
  • Jimmy Johnston, Forward Sumner
  • Evan Jones, Alumnus
  • Amy New, President, Cookeville-Putnam County Chamber of Commerce
  • Steve Parker, Board Chair, VSCC Foundation & CPA, Blankenship CPA Group
  • Dewayne Scott,Deputy Commissioner, TN Department of Labor & Workforce Development & VSCC Foundation Board Member
  • Cliff Wightman, President, Tennessee Colleges of Applied Technology Crossville & Livingston