• Presidential Profile

  • The Mt. Hood Community College (MHCC) Board of Education invites nominations and applications for the position of president. The new president will be an innovative, inclusive and collaborative leader who promotes the success of the college and its students, faculty, and staff while fostering close ties with the community. They will have an understanding of the challenges and opportunities facing MHCC and community colleges operating in the 21st century. The new president has the opportunity to build upon the success and progress of the current president, Dr. Debbie Derr, who is retiring after five years in the position.

    MHCC is one of the largest community colleges in Oregon. It serves more than 25,000 students annually. Classes are offered at the Gresham Campus, Maywood Park Center, Bruning Center for Allied Health Education and public schools within the district. MHCC students choose from 120 associate degrees, certificate programs and transfer options including unique offerings such as Cybersecurity, Mechatronics, Fisheries Technology, Funeral Studies and automotive partnerships, as well as community education, and offerings from the college’s Small Business Development Center and Head Start program.

    The community surrounding MHCC has grown in terms of population and diversity the past few years and the area continues to grow. MHCC’s student body mirrors the community. The college is committed to remaining accessible to an ever-increasing population with diverse needs.

    MHCC is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities. The college is financed by local property tax revenue, state reimbursement funds and student tuition. The annual budget is $195,000,000, with a general fund budget of $70,000,000.

    MHCC’s service area encompasses about 950 square miles, including rural and urban communities.  With a population of more than 300,000, the district boundaries extend as far east as the lofty peak of Mt. Hood and to the Wasco County line, south into Clackamas County including the communities of Sandy, Boring and Damascus and west into the City of Portland.  Within this area are the seven public school districts of Corbett, David Douglas, Gresham-Barlow, Parkrose, Reynolds, Centennial, and Oregon Trail. In addition, the college has expanded its online offerings.

    Challenges and Opportunities:

    The president of MHCC will embrace the entire community, and address the following challenges and opportunities to improve the lives of students and residents of its service area by:

    1. Building and expanding programs and services that respond to the needs of the college’s diverse economy and changing community demographics, including a student body that is becoming more diverse and non-traditional.
    2. Strengthening alliances with local business and industry, school districts, elected officials, and colleges and universities to meet the region’s workforce and educational needs.
    3. Continuing to build a student-focused campus directed at helping students successfully meet their personal, academic and professional goals in a safe and accessible learning environment with a focus on equitable student outcomes.
    4. Serving as an effective spokesperson and advocate for MHCC throughout the local service region as well as at the state and federal levels.
    5. Continuing to build confidence and support in the community by promoting the college to local businesses, educational institutions, and residents to increase the college’s visibility and reputation.
    6. Actively seeking input from all constituents to strengthen cross-campus communication and collaboration, as well as inspiring and engaging employees, students, and stakeholders to work together to address the unique challenges of the college.
    7. Providing leadership in assessing and upgrading facilities, infrastructure and technology, ensuring a safe and modern place for learning.
    8. Providing organizational leadership to support instruction, staff and students.
    9. Developing and implementing a sustainable funding model that will support the college’s strategic plan and allow the institution to meet the diverse needs of its students and its community.
    10. Leading efforts in recruitment, hiring, and retention of employees who reflect the college’s diverse student population.
    11. Continuing to create a global-minded campus culture and economy, which includes support for study abroad programs and international students.

    Ideal Characteristics:

    1. A proven track record as a student-focused advocate dedicated to student success, access and completion.
    2. An instructional leader with knowledge of best teaching practices and classroom experience in higher education.
    3. A proven track record of fostering innovation with successful results.
    4. An inclusive, visible, accessible, and courageous leader who is able to make difficult decisions.  An exceptional listener who demonstrates integrity, honesty and humility.
    5. A visionary who can define a path and stay the course; one who is determined to make a long-term commitment to the college.
    6. A community focused leader who is experienced at fostering partnerships with business and industry, and who foresees changing workforce and community needs and develops relevant programs to respond.
    7. A passionate and compassionate leader with a comprehensive understanding and demonstrated support of diversity, equity and inclusion.
    8. A demonstrated ability in process and system improvement, as well as management of complex budgets.
    9. Ability to identify and obtain resources through private fundraising, entrepreneurial activities, grants and passing bonds.
    10. A leader who has successfully met enrollment, retention and completion goals.
    11. A genuine collaborator with a track record of building strong relationships with K-12 schools and partnerships with colleges and universities.
    12. A leader who can advocate in the community as well as with local government and state and federal representatives and offices.
    13. A technologically savvy administrator, who is experienced with prioritizing college wide technology needs.
    14. A successful record of positive labor relations working collaboratively with faculty and classified staff unions.
    15. A committed educator who will work effectively with an elected Board of Directors.


    1. Master’s degree from a regionally accredited institution, Doctorate preferred.
    2. Progressively successful experience as a senior level college administrator, preferably at a community college.
    3. Experience working with diverse communities.
    4. Higher education teaching experience preferred.