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Southwestern has a new president Allison K. Sampite | Fri, Oct 14 2011 12:00 PM

At Southwestern College’s Wednesday governing board meeting, Dr. Melinda Nish, 49, was named superintendent/president.

Nish will replace interim superintendent/president Denise Whittaker beginning Jan 2.

“We look forward to her taking us to the next level of educational excellence,” board president Tim Nader said in a press statement. “She will build upon everything good (interim superintendent) Denise Whittaker has done.”
The governing board began the process of hiring a new superintendent in June. After a nationwide search generated 34 applications, an 18-member committee of college students, faculty, administrators and community members narrowed the group to five, at which point public presentations and interviews narrowed the field to three.

The screening committee conducted site visits to the campuses of finalists during the week of Sept. 25. 

Nish is currently vice president of academic affairs at Orange Coast College. She earned an Ed.D. at the Fielding Graduate University in Santa Barbara after studying at the Graduate Institute of International Studies in Geneva, Switzerland. She became vice president in 2005. She was the college’s Accreditation Liaison Officer and in 2009 was named Orange Coast College Manager of the Year.

The terms of Nish’s contract will be announced soon.


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