AACC names new president, Dawn Lindsay


AACC president Dawn LindsayAnne Arundel Community College announced April 3 the selection of its new president, Dr. Dawn Lindsay. The announcement came after an extensive nationwide search to follow Dr. Martha A. Smith, who will retire from the position after 18 years as president. Lindsay will officially assume her new role Aug. 1, becoming the sixth president in the college’s 50-year history. 

The college received 120 applications nationwide. From that pool, 12 candidates were interviewed by a Search and Screening Committee led by trustee and former chair James H. Johnson Jr., Ph.D., and made up of board, faculty, staff and community members. Three top candidates were invited back to the AACC campus to meet further with the college’s eight-member Board of Trustees and the wider college community before a final decision was made.

“Among community college professionals nationwide, Anne Arundel Community College is highly regarded, so it was no surprise that we received a wealth of highly talented and extremely experienced professionals,” said Victoria K. Fretwell, chair of the Board of Trustees. “The board unanimously felt Dr. Lindsay had the leadership qualities, experience and commitment to excellence to meet AACC’s mission mandates and build upon the college’s stellar reputation.”

A native of Maryland, Lindsay has served as president of Glendale Community College in Glendale, Calif., since 2009 where she oversees a combined college and state-allocated budget of $157 million. She also previously held the positions of executive vice president and vice president of instructional services at the college.

With more than 25 years experience in higher education, she has served in the role of staff, faculty and administrator at Riverside Community College, Saddleback College and Argosy University in California, as well as adjunct professor and instructor positions at Dundalk and Howard community colleges in Maryland. Lindsay received the Glendale Chamber of Commerce’s “Woman of the Year” award and was named “One of the Top 20 Female Leaders of Los Angeles” by Business Life magazine.

“Anne Arundel Community College is a real jewel,” Lindsay said. “I have been watching this college and I believe in its mission. There’s so much alignment between my leadership approach, my values and AACC. It’s also a wonderful opportunity for me to return to my roots, so I am very much looking forward to it.”

Lindsay is a commissioner for the American Association of Community Colleges and an active representative for the needs, values and importance of the community college system in both Sacramento and Washington, D.C. She is a regional CEO representative and serves as a board member for the Glendale Chamber of Commerce, the Alex Theater and the California Community College Athletic Association. Lindsay has developed numerous community partnerships, including partnerships with the Verdugo Power Academy, the Tri-City Fire Academy and an emerging Middle College for high school students. 

Lindsay earned a doctorate (Ed.D.) in Organizational Leadership from Pepperdine University, a master’s in Educational Counseling, a B.A. in Psychology and a B.S.W. in Social Work from McDaniel College.

AACC’s current president echoed Fretwell’s comments saying, “I am thrilled with the selection of Dr. Lindsay because of her extraordinary talent, accomplishments and character. I have total confidence in her outstanding leadership to take AACC into its next chapter of excellence, and look forward to working with her to ensure a successful transition.”

About Anne Arundel Community College
Anne Arundel Community College is an award-winning, fully-accredited public two-year institution serving approximately 53,000 students each year through classes offered at its Arnold campus, multiple locations throughout Anne Arundel County and online. National and regional award-winning studies can lead to a degree, including successful transfer to a four-year institution, professional certificate, industry credential or personal enrichment. AACC celebrated its 50th anniversary in the fall of 2011.

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