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Mary Graham selected as president of Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College

Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College December 24, 2010
At the regular meeting of the Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College (MGCCC) Board of Trustees this week, the Board made a unanimous decision to name Dr. Mary S. Graham as the 12th president to lead the college effective July 1, 2011.

After serving as president since 1998, Dr. Willis H. Lott had announced his retirement, effective June 30, 2011. The Presidential Search Committee was chaired by Moreno Jones, Jackson County Board member and former chair.

"Dr. Mary Graham was selected for the presidency based on her vision, leadership ability, and demonstrated competencies required for leading a multi-campus institution with almost one hundred years of tradition. Selecting the president of the college is an important responsibility that our Board of Trustees considered very carefully. Our goal was to find a visionary leader committed to students, employees, alumni, and community throughout the four-county district," Jones said.

A native of Mississippi, Dr. Graham earned her Ph.D. in Higher Education Administration from the University of Southern Mississippi (USM); her Master's and Bachelor's Degrees are from USM as well. Dr. Graham's experience in master planning, leadership development, budget management, credit and noncredit instruction, public relations, legislative advocacy, human resources, residential student life, athletic and marching band programs have prepared her to lead this institution.

"I am honored to be the next president of Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College and will strive to fulfill the commitment of making a positive difference in people's lives every day," Graham said. "I look forward to working with the great employees of the college and to leading our world-class institution."

Jefferson Davis Campus faculty member and social studies chair, Karla Smith, said that Dr. Graham is well respected and understands the needs of the students and faculty.

"She is committed to world-class instruction and to the importance of preparing students for the 21st century," Smith said. "Her leadership role in the reaffirmation of the college by the Southern Association of Schools and Colleges- Commission on Colleges was invaluable in the compliance review and selection of quality enhancement plan."
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