President Search

March 15, 2018 - Clackamas Community College announces next president

Tim Cook

OREGON CITY - The Clackamas Community College Board of Education announced its next president during its March 14 meeting. Dr. Tim Cook, current vice president of instruction at Clark College, Wash., will take the helm of the college effective July 1. He will replace Dr. Joanne Truesdell, who has served as president since 2007.

"We are excited to have Dr. Cook join CCC," Jane Reid, CCC Board of Education chair, said. "He brings with him extensive community college experience, and, as a native of Oregon City, he already has strong connections to the community and college district. His previous work with guided pathways, extensive experience in advising and counseling, strong connections with community and deep commitment to student success make him a great fit for CCC."

As the chief academic officer at Clark College, Cook leads a team of more than 600 faculty and staff, oversees 120 degrees and programs, and manages a budget of $38 million. His experience includes leading the implementation of the college’s initial two applied bachelor’s degrees, championing the redesign and remodel of a culinary institute, and he has been leading Clark’s guided pathways initiative.

He began working at Clark College in 1997 as a faculty counselor and taught courses in human development and sociology for more than 14 years.

"I’ve spent the last 26 years working to improve student success so all students can achieve their education goals. As a first-generation college student, I know the impact community colleges have on students and the communities where they live," Cook said. "I look forward to reconnecting with and giving back to the community where I grew up."

Dr. Cook earned a doctorate in community college leadership from Oregon State University. He holds a master’s degree in counseling psychology from Lewis & Clark College and a bachelor’s degree in English from Western Oregon University.

Jan. 28, 2018

J. Michael Thomson withdrew his candidacy for the position of Clackamas Community College president.

Jan. 3, 2018 - President candidate finalist forums

Please mark your calendars for the upcoming community forums with each of the four finalists in the president search. The forums will all be held in the Osterman Theatre at 4 p.m. with an informal reception from 5 to 5:30 p.m.

January 17Tim Cook, Vice President of Instruction, Clark College, Washington
January 18Jessica Howard, SE Campus President, Portland Community College, Oregon
January 22Chris Haines, Interim President, Phoenix College, Arizona
January 24J. Michael Thomson, Eastern Campus President, Cuyahoga Community College, Ohio

The community forums provide an opportunity for you to meet the finalists, ask questions, and offer input. The forums are one of many events scheduled during a two-day college visit, including meetings and conversations with:

  • Board of Education
  • Association leadership
  • Associated Student Government
  • Foundation Board
  • Vice Presidents
  • Admin/Confidential
  • President Truesdell

Candidates will also tour all three campuses and interview with the Expanded Search Advisory Committee.

As a member of the college community, your participation and input are significant to the selection of CCC’s next president. The Board of Education and search committee value your opinions and recommendations.

To easily add these dates and times to your calendar, visit the Events page, click on the forum and then “add to my calendar” on the bottom right.

Candidate Bios

Tim Cook

Tim Cook

Dr. Tim Cook has spent the last 26 years working to improve student success at the individual and system level so that all students can achieve their educational goals. He has a proven record of developing partnerships with business and education that lead to mutually beneficial outcomes. A first-generation college student, Dr. Cook personally understands how community colleges provide economic mobility for students and the communities where they live.

Dr. Cook serves as the Vice President of Instruction at Clark College, a comprehensive community college serving 21,000 students annually across three campuses in Southwest Washington. As the Chief Academic Officer, Dr. Cook leads a team of more than 600 faculty and staff, oversees 120 degrees and programs, and manages a budget of $38 million. Dr. Cook led the implementation of the college’s initial two Applied Bachelor’s degrees. He championed the redesign and remodel of the Culinary Institute and is currently the lead for the guided pathways college initiative.

Dr. Cook began working at Clark College in 1997 as a Faculty Counselor. He taught courses in Human Development and Sociology as a tenured faculty member for more than 14 years. He has served as Division Chair for the Behavioral Sciences, Director of Counseling, and Acting Dean of Student Success and Retention. In 2008, he co-led the college’s Accreditation self-study.

A native of Oregon City, Dr. Cook earned a doctorate in Community College Leadership from Oregon State University. He holds a Master’s degree in Counseling Psychology from Lewis & Clark College and a Bachelor’s degree in English from Western Oregon University. Outside of work he enjoys spending time with his wife and three children. An avid runner, he has completed 26 marathons in 16 states.

Chris Haines

Chris Haines

Chris Haines brings more than 30 years of higher education experience to her role as Interim President of Phoenix College.

Haines has been working within the Maricopa County Community Colleges District since 1989, starting at Mesa Community College. She was selected as Phoenix College’s Dean of Students in 2011, serving in that role for three years before becoming the successful candidate in a national search for the college’s Vice President of Student Affairs.

Prior to joining PC, Haines served as Interim Associate Dean of Enrollment Services at South Mountain Community College (SMCC). In 2010, she served an eight-month term as Interim Dean of Student Services at Scottsdale Community College during a national recruitment for that position. Her career background also includes service as Interim Associate Dean of Student Development at South Mountain Community College and Director of Athletics and the Fitness Center at SMCC for six years.

Throughout her career, Haines has served on numerous college, district and national committees, as well as a tri-chair for SMCC’s successful Higher Learning Commission accreditation in 2009. She served as tri-chair of the committee leading Phoenix College’s reaffirmation of accreditation process, which culminated with a successful reaffirmation of accreditation by the Higher Learning Commission in 2016.

A native of Zion, Illinois, Haines attended Black Hills State University in Spearfish, South Dakota, becoming the first in her family to earn a college degree. She majored in political science. She also played collegiate volleyball and softball, coached both volleyball and basketball at two- and four-year colleges and universities. Haines went on to receive a master’s degree in Educational Counseling from Northern Arizona University and is currently ABD, dissertation in process in Educational Leadership/Higher Education at NAU.

Jessica Howard

Jessica Howard

Jessica Howard, Ph.D. has been serving as Campus President at Portland Community College’s Southeast Campus for over five years. Dr. Howard spent most of her early life in San Antonio, Texas and then attended Rice University, receiving her undergraduate degrees in English and Music and a Master’s degree in Music Theory. Dr. Howard received her Ph.D. from New York University.

Dr. Howard began her higher education career in the classroom, teaching humanities and music courses at universities and community colleges. For over 20 years she has served community colleges as a part-time and full-time faculty member, Department Chair, Vice President of Academic Affairs, Executive Vice President, and as Campus President. In order to demonstrate the importance of credential completion and to engage more fully with students, while an administrator at San Antonio College, Dr. Howard took courses and proudly achieved her Associate’s Degree.

Since coming to Oregon, Dr. Howard has served on the Oregon Workforce Investment Board, the Latino Network Board, the Portland Rotary Board, Oregon Presidents’ Council and on the Board of Campus Compact of Oregon, where she is Chair. Nationally, she serves on the Global Education Commission of the American Association of Community Colleges and the National Steering Committee of Campus Compact.

While at PCC, Dr. Howard has overseen the college’s workforce and community development operations, in addition to leading the development of the Southeast Center into the college’s newest comprehensive campus. This entailed expanding academic programs and student services and $40M of bond-funded construction.

Dr. Howard is committed to higher education in Oregon and the mission of community colleges in the state. She is a member of the Wetlands Conservancy and the Oregon Historical Society and lectures periodically at Portland State University on the topic of higher education leadership.

J Michael Thomson

J Michael Thomson

Dr. J Michael Thomson is an accomplished, passionate leader who is dedicated to the community college movement. As a first generation college student, he advocates that community colleges act as a primary instrument for economic mobility by providing educational opportunities that result in family sustaining wages.

Dr. Thomson currently serves as the president of Cuyahoga Community College’s (Tri-C) Eastern Campus, leading 550 full and part time team members and serving more than 275,000 citizens and 6,000 students annually. His signature accomplishment in this position was securing a $10 million endowment to create the Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Humanities Center.

Dr. Thomson began his Tri-C career in 2005 as dean of academic affairs at Tri-C’s Western Campus. In 2009, he was selected for an American Council on Education fellowship, during which he worked at the Ohio Board of Regents and William Rainey Harper College. Upon his return, Dr. Thomson led seven teams of faculty, staff, students and community members to plan, build and accredit Tri-C’s Westshore Campus, where he served as inaugural campus president from 2011 to 2013.

Prior to his time at Tri-C, Dr. Thomson served Northern Kentucky University (NKU) as a tenured associate professor in political science. There he was elected both faculty senate president and the faculty regent. Dr. Thomson also created and directed the University’s Master of Public Administration (MPA) program, serving government and not-for-profit entities in the greater Cincinnati area. Previous posts included matchmaker for local government at the University of Cincinnati and assistant professor of political science at Ouachita Baptist University.

Dr. Thomson holds master’s and doctoral degrees in political science from the University of Kentucky, as well as a bachelor’s degree from Pennsylvania State University. Son of a brewer and a bookkeeper, Dr. Thomson has one child and four grandchildren.

Dec 14, 2017 - CCC president finalists announced

OREGON CITY - During its Dec. 13 regular meeting, the Clackamas Community College Board of Education announced the finalists for the position of the next college president, which will be vacated this spring when Dr. Joanne Truesdell retires.

In October, the CCC Board of Education approved the members of an Expanded Search Advisory Committee, whose charge was to review president applications, conduct initial interviews and make a recommendation of finalists to the Board of Education.

The finalists are:

Tim Cook - Clark College vice president of instruction, Washington

Cook has been at Clark College since 1997 and has served in many positions, including counseling faculty, division chair and acting dean of student success and retention. He has an education doctorate in higher education administration, with an emphasis in community college leadership, from Oregon State University.

Chris Haines - Phoenix College interim president, Arizona

At Phoenix College, Haines has held positions as vice president and dean of student affairs. Prior to joining Phoenix College, she served as interim associate dean of enrollment services at South Mountain Community College, Ariz. Haines has a master’s degree in educational counseling from Northern Arizona University and is working on her doctoral degree in educational leadership/higher education at Northern Arizona University.

Jessica Howard - Portland Community College Southeast Campus president, Oregon

Howard has been PCC’s Southeast Campus president since 2012. Prior to this role, she served as vice president of academic affairs at San Antonio College. Howard holds a doctorate in performance studies from New York University. Prior to her administrative experience, she taught music and humanities at the high school, community college and university levels.

J Michael Thomson - Cuyahoga Community College Eastern Campus president, Ohio

Thomson came to Cuyahoga Community College from Northern Kentucky University in 2005 when he was hired as the dean of academic affairs at its Western Campus. At Northern Kentucky, he served as political science faculty and department chair. He earned a doctorate in political science at the University of Kentucky.

The finalists will be invited to Clackamas Community College at the end of January to tour the CCC campuses, to meet students, staff and faculty, and to participate in public forums. The community will be invited and encouraged to participate in select forums.

If you have questions regarding the search, contact Amanda Coffey at

Oct 16, 2017

The Clackamas Community College president position closed Friday, Oct. 13.

In September, the President Search Advisory Committee developed an application process for students, faculty and staff to serve on the Expanded Search Advisory Committee. This committee, which has broad representation from across the college, will play an important role in the Board of Education’s search for CCC’s next president.

The Expanded Search Advisory Committee members are:

Preston PulliamsSearch Consultant, Gold Hill Associates
Jane ReidBoard of Education, committee co-chair
Ron AdamsBoard of Education, committee co-chair
Dave HuntBoard of Education
Amanda CoffeyTransition Liaison, English Faculty
Bill WatersDean, Curriculum, Planning, and Research
Denice BaileyExecutive Assistant to the President
Francia LockerbyStudent
Jairo RodriguezStudent, Associated Student Government President
Laurette ScottEducation Faculty, FTF President-Elect
Elizabeth CarneyAssessment Coordinator, Faculty
Susan EdwardsComputer Science, Part-time Faculty
Susan PeszneckerEnglish, Part-time Faculty
Kelly WhiteAdministrative Assistant, Art Department
Max WeddingBusiness Systems Analyst, AFAC Division
Lisa DavidsonExecutive Director, CBI Division
Chris SmithHR Compliance Specialist
Jarett GilbertDirector of Health Sciences, Harmony Representative
Christopher HughesStudents Services Coordinator, Wilsonville Representative
Alice NorrisFoundation Board

October and November will be busy months for the expanded committee in terms of screening applicants, selecting and interviewing semi-finalists, and ultimately working with Preston to select finalists to recommend to the Board. The Board of Education will approve finalists in January, at which point reference checks, interviews and both internal and external community forums will commence. The Board of Education’s final selection and appointment will occur early spring.

Sept 18, 2017

Expanded President Search Advisory Committee

On Sept. 18, all CCC staff and faculty received an email encouraging them to apply for the Expanded President Search Advisory Committee. The committee plays an important role in the president search process by reviewing applications, interviewing candidates, attending meetings and campus events, and supporting and advising the Board of Education on its final selection. Associated Student Government, administrative staff, confidential staff and each association will have two representatives on the expanded committee. One representative will be appointed through their respective association leadership and the other through application and appointment by the Board.

Application Requirements/Process

If applying to serve on the Expanded President Search Advisory Committee, staff and faculty were asked to consider the following criteria:

  • Commitment to the best interests of CCC. Although members of the expanded committee serve as representatives of specific constituent groups, committee members will be expected to bring a “College-wide” perspective to their search work.
  • Record of active engagement in College affairs.  Relevant experience may include leadership or service at the College, or other activities that have broadened the applicant’s perspective on the College.
  • Ability to maintain strict confidentiality. Committee members will be required to sign a confidentiality agreement in order to foster frank discussion and protect the confidentiality of candidates and committee members during the process.
  • Demonstrated ability to work collaboratively with others. The work of the Committee will critically depend on listening and responding thoughtfully, not only to the greater CCC community, but to each other, as well.
  • Willingness and ability to devote the time, energy, and attention required for full participation in the search process. Committee members will be expected to attend all meetings, which may be held during evenings and weekends. Throughout the process, Committee members must be willing to put in the time to review documents and come fully prepared to all meetings. Because of the intensive commitment required of Committee members, the Board will encourage efforts to make reasonable accommodations for them by their colleagues and supervisors.
  • Commitment to Equity and Inclusion: Committee members should have a demonstrated track record of commitment to diversity and inclusion as evidenced by both their work and actions at CCC.

The work of the expanded group will begin as early as late October and will continue through spring term.

July 5, 2017

The Clackamas Community College president position is open. A link to the position posting can be found at here.

Applications will be accepted through Friday, Oct. 13, 2017.

Application process

To be considered for this position, submit the following at

  1. Online application form.
  2. Current resume.
  3. A letter of application that succinctly addresses the position profile and demonstrates how the candidate’s experience and professional qualifications prepare them to serve the needs of CCC (not to exceed five pages). Cite examples from background and experience to demonstrate knowledge and expertise.

Selection Timeline (Subject to change)

  • Oct. 13, 2017: Closing date for applications
  • Mid-November 2017: Semifinalists interviews
  • Mid-December 2017: Board of Education approves finalists
  • February 2018: On-campus interviews by Board and college community
  • April 2018: Announcement of new president

For confidential inquiries, contact Gold Hill Associates:
Preston Pulliams -

For further inquiries, contact:
CCC Transition Liaison Amanda Coffey -

June 7, 2017

President profile forum results

Clackamas Community College held a series of nine forums on all three campuses during the week of May 8-12. Three of the forums were specific to the college’s internal community, and additional forums were held with college association leadership and Associated Student Government. Approximately 150 people attended the forums.

To hear from those who could not attend the forums, the college also held an online survey. The survey had 109 respondents, including 71 members of CCC faculty/staff and 14 students. The remaining respondents were district residents, business representatives, donors and Foundation members.

Clear themes emerged in the forums and the online survey:


  • Relations-based, engaged and participatory culture of shared governance
  • Student-centered
  • Strong mission: equal support for all four core themes
  • Poised for growth: new buildings, local support, systems, initiatives
  • Location - Clackamas County (rural/urban mix) and Oregon in general


  • Budget: funding, PERS, legislative efforts
  • Maintaining and growing partnerships: workforce, industry, K-12, 4-year institutions
  • Enrollment: recruitment, retention, completion
  • Diversity: actual and philosophical
  • Resistance to change: everything from defining the “Clackamas way” to policies and processes

Experience and background

  • Community college background or experience
  • Human relations and leadership
  • Strong communicator, practiced listener
  • Budget and finance
  • Public relations, funding-raising, politics

The President Search Advisory Committee used these themes to help develop the president profile that will be used for recruitment. The Board of Education is slated to approve the profile during its June 28 meeting. The position is expected to be posted June 29

May 10, 2017

Take the president search survey

If you couldn't attend one of the president search forums, there is still time to share with us what you think are important considerations in hiring our next president. In addition to submitting ideas in the areas of educational preparation, background and experience of the new president, you can also identify upcoming challenges and needs for the college.

Link to survey

The college is gathering this feedback to develop a "success profile" that will serve as a lens for the president search. The profile will be developed by the search advisory committee and Gold Hill Associates and approved by the Board of Education. For questions about the survey, email

April 27, 2017

A series of public forums will be held May 8-12 on all three CCC campuses. College faculty, staff and students and members of the community are invited to participate in facilitated discussions to help develop the profile of the next president.

The forums will be facilitated by search firm Gold Hill Associates. Information collected at the forums will be compiled and shared with the Search Advisory Committee, who will develop the profile that will be approved by the Board of Education. The college is seeking input on: challenges the next president will face, opportunities that will be available, and expectations of the next president. Refreshments will be served.

Campus forums - open to all students and college staff and faculty:

Date TimeLocation
May 8th3:30-5 p.m.Gregory Forum 108
May 10thNoon-1:30 p.m.Community Center 127
May 11th8:30-10 a.m.Gregory Forum 108

Community Forums - open to all CCC district residents, college staff, faculty and students:

May 8th5:30-7 p.m.Gregory Forum 108
May 9th3:30-5 p.m.Wilsonville Commons
May 9th5:30-7 p.m.Wilsonville Commons
May 11th3:30-5 p.m.Harmony Lobby
May 11th5:30-7 p.m.Harmony 310
May 12thNoon-1:30 p.m.Community Center 127

View a map of CCC’s main campuses.

April 26, 2017

For more than 50 years, Clackamas Community College has been changing with the times and working to meet the needs of the community. CCC is known for high-quality education and training opportunities, lifetime learning and robust student life programming.

Recognized for its committed, supportive faculty and staff, CCC offers classes and services to a diverse student body totaling more than 38,000 at three active campuses - the Oregon City campus, the Harmony Community Campus in Milwaukie and the Wilsonville campus.

In March 2017, CCC President Joanne Truesdell announced her decision to retire her presidency effective July 2018. Using Gold Hill Associates, the CCC Board of Education is conducting a national search for the college’s next leader.

The Board of Education is committed to an open and inclusive process that allows for community and college involvement according to the college’s Shared Governance Process. The board takes seriously its role in selecting the ninth president for CCC.

A series of college and public forums will be held in May to seek input from faculty, staff, students and the community on institutional and leadership needs in order to develop the president profile. A search advisory committee will be developed to assist in the president search and selection.