Szakas Will Continue as Interim Leader of UMaine at Augusta as Initial Choice for Prez Withdraws

By John O. Harney

Comings and Goings …

Joseph S. Szakas

Michael R. Laliberte withdrew as the choice for the next president of the University of Maine at Augusta (UMA) after the revelation that he had received a vote of no confidence from his former university, the State University of New York at Delhi, which led to a flurry of votes of no confidence in the University of Maine System. The system initially announced Laliberte’s appointment in April. This past weekend, a system statement confirmed that UMA Provost and  interim President Joseph S. Szakas will remain as the interim leader for another year, while a formal search is launched.

UMass Dartmouth appointed University of North Texas College of Engineering Dean Hanchen Huang to be the Massachusetts research university’s next provost and vice chancellor for academic affairs. An engineer and first-generation student, Huang earlier served as a faculty member and chair of mechanical & industrial engineering at Northeastern University.

Berkshire Community College announced several new staff members. Nick Delmolino, former director of advancement at Teton Raptor Center and previously senior director of marketing and communications at Teton Science Schools in Wyoming, will be executive director of institutional advancement, where he will support the fundraising of the Berkshire Community College Foundation. Bill Jennings, recently information technology manager at Iredale Cosmetics in Great Barrington, Mass., will be the community college’s director of information technology.

Action for Boston Community Development (ABCD) announced that its executive vice president, Sharon Scott-Chandler, will lead the famed Boston-based antipoverty organization when longtime President John Drew retires on June 30. ABCD was designated as Boston’s official antipoverty agency in 1964. Scott-Chandler is a former Massachusetts assistant attorney general who also chaired the state’s Early Education and Care Board.

The Vermont State Colleges System voted to appoint Vermont Technical College (VTC) President Patricia Moulton as the first executive director of a new Workforce Development Division when she leaves the VTC presidency in July. Moulton became the first female president in VTC’s 150-year history in 2017.

Members of the Massachusetts Teachers Association (MTA) elected the union’s vice president, Max Page, to succeed MTA President Merrie Najimy, when her current term ends on July 15. Page is  an architecture professor at UMass Amherst, former president of the Massachusetts Society of Professors at UMass Amherst, and a founding member of the Public Higher Education Network of Massachusetts (PHENOM), which unites students, families, alumni, professors, staff and community members from state universities, community colleges and the UMass system to advocate for high-quality, debt-free public college. Hull, Mass. teacher Deb McCarthy was voted the MTA’s vice president-elect.

Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation President Eileen McAnneny announced she will step down at the end of the year. In 2015, she became the first woman to lead the business-backed group that plays an influential role on Beacon Hill budget and fiscal matters. McAnneny succeeded Michael Widmer, who led the group for more than 20 years.


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