Prez Changes and Female Firsts

By John O. Harney


Comings and Goings …

Vermont College of Fine Arts (VCFA) appointed management consultant and college trustee Leslie Ward to be its interim president, succeeding Thomas Greene, the novelist who founded VCFA in 2006 by combining the old Vermont College campus with three MFA programs from Union Institute and University.

The Connecticut Board of Education appointed Desi Nesmith, currently a chief turnaround officer helping the state’s lowest performing schools and districts with academic improvement, to be the second interim commissioner of the state Department of Education. Outgoing Commissioner Dianna Wentzell has been serving as interim commissioner since her term ended March 1. A for her permanent successor heading into its seventh month.

Partners HealthCare named Interim President Dr. Anne Klibanski to the permanent job, succeeding Dr. David Torchiana, who announced his retirement. Klibanski becomes the first female CEO of the state’s largest private employer.

The Massachusetts Port Authority chose its port director, Lisa Wieland, to be the second woman CEO of Massport, the agency that oversees Logan Airport, Boston port operations, two other airports and various pieces of real estate in Boston. The first woman Massport CEO was Virginia Buckingham, who was running the agency at the time of the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks.

The National Education Association (NEA) appointed Kim Anglin Anderson, a former NEA official and recent executive vice president at the Democracy Alliance, to be the first woman and first person of color to serve as the executive director of America’s largest labor union for teachers, faculty and other education professionals.

Suffolk University appointed Julie H. Sandell, currently senior associate provost at Boston University and a member of BU’s School of Medicine faculty, to be Suffolk’s next senior vice president for academic affairs and provost, effective Aug. 1.

Bowdoin College named Kristina Bethea Odejimi, currently dean of students at St. Margaret’s School in Tappahannock, Va., to become dean of students at the Brunswick, Maine college, effective Aug. 1.

Northern Essex Community College named Allison Dolan-Wilson, a former alumni relations executive at MIT and the University of California Irvine, to be its new vice president of institutional advancement, succeeding Jean Poth, who retired.

The Community College of Rhode Island named Sybil Bailey to be its new human resources director. Bailey most recently served as director of human resources for the City of Providence, and before that, as director of employee relations at Brown University.

Sacred Heart University named Keith Hassell, a former career development official at the University of Bridgeport and New York’s Iona College, to be its new executive director of the Center for Career & Professional Development.



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