Presidential finalists visit Lane

On April 13, 2016, the Lane Community College Board of Education appointed a Presidential Search Advisory Committee to aid in appointing a new president for Lane. Current President Mary Spilde has set her intended date of retirement to be June 30, 2017. The three finalist candidates for the presidency were determined by the board in Nov. 2016.

The finalists were invited to Lane campuses between Jan. 17 and Jan. 19 for several forums. Allowing students, faculty and the public to have the opportunity to ask questions and weigh in on the decision-making process. The all-campus forums were held on the main campus and live-streamed to the extension campuses.

The downtown campus held private forums for classified staff, faculty, managers and the presidential search committee, as well as a public forum in the evening.

The three finalists are Dr. Peter Maphumulo, currently the executive vice president for instruction and student services at Victor Valley College in Victorville, California, Dr. David L. Rule, most recently the president of Bellevue College in Washington and Dr. Margaret A. Hamilton, currently the vice president for academic affairs, institutional effectiveness and planning at Camden County College in Blackwood, New Jersey.

Dr. Maphumulo has 17 years of experience in higher education. His accomplishments include increasing enrollments and completions and introducing new technologies.

Maphumulo addressed questions regarding training programs for faculty and staff at the college, extension centers and non-credit courses on Jan. 17 in the public forum at the downtown campus.

As a dean at Portland Community College, Maphumulo began a partnership with Portland State University to incentivize graduate students at PSU who wanted to teach at the community college. The intent was to create part-time faculty positions and provide the training and mentoring necessary to ensure that the college has qualified full-time faculty.

Maphumulo was also involved in setting up similar mentoring and coaching for staff and faculty who wanted to hold administrative positions. “It’s a wonderful way to invest in the college’s employees to make it possible for them, for their professional growth, to move up,” Maphumulo said.

“We hold meetings so that people in the centers see the administration, see the leadership,” Maphumulo said about unifying extension centers with the main campus “so that the people and the community members on those sites do see the college leadership.” In addition, he says that it is important to schedule regular visits for the President to interact with the satellite campuses.

Dr. Rule has 30 years of experience in higher education. His accomplishments include increasing enrollment and retention rates and developing new academic and student services plans at previous colleges.

Rule addressed questions regarding sustainability, non-credit courses and public safety on Jan. 18 in the public forum at the downtown campus.

“I’m very passionate about sustainability,” Rule said. He explained various sustainability projects he was involved with at former campuses. Some of these projects included solar power installations, sustainable gardening and facilitating a switch from paper towels to hand dryers.

Rule said his top priority in dealing with public safety is taking preventative measures. In many instances, like hate-writings that appeared on a campus where Rule worked, the immediate course that the administration should take is not clear, he explained. What is clear in Rule’s opinion, is that it is necessary to have open dialogue between students, faculty, administration and public safety so that the hard decisions can be worked through together.

Dr. Hamilton has been at Camden County College for 28 years. Among her accomplishments, she has initiated educational partnerships between Camden CC and Rutgers University and developed an international partnership with Nanyang Medical College in China.

Hamilton addressed questions regarding budget decisions, enrollment outreach and part-time and full-time faculty on Jan. 19 in the public forum at the downtown campus.

“I’m not a fan of across-the-board cuts. I do not think that’s effective,” Hamilton said. “I believe you have to do the deep analysis. I regularly do program analysis with my colleagues.”

Hamilton is a proponent of utilizing part-time faculty, because part-time faculty “bring the workforce to us.” Additionally, with fluctuating enrollment, adjunct instructors help “fill needs and gaps when we need them,” because, she elaborated, predicting how much full-time faculty will necessary in the future is difficult.

The Lane Board of Education will make the final decision on which candidate will become Lane’s next president. The Board is open to considering the opinions of the search committee as well as faculty, staff and students regarding the candidates. The new president is intended to start working at Lane before Spilde retires.

To view the full length videos of the all-campus and public forums, go to, then type “presidential search” into the search bar. Click on the result titled “Presidential Search,” then click on the YouTube link near the top of the page for a playlist of the six forums.