50 apply for LBWCC presidency

Published 12:27 am Wednesday, September 24, 2008

The open president’s seat at Lurleen B. Wallace Community College has attracted interest from a wide variety of candidates, including 39 from outside the state of Alabama.

E.J. Cooper, a spokesperson for the Alabama Department of Postsecondary Education, said Tuesday that 50 people have applied for the job. The deadline to fill out an application for the position was Saturday.

Wayne Bennett has been serving as interim president at LBWCC since May, when then-president Dr. Ed Meadows left to take the same position at Pensacola Junior College in Florida.

On Thurs., Aug. 28, the State Board of Education finalized an 11-member search committee to vet the candidates. The committee is chaired by Dr. James M. Mitchell, president of Wallace Community College in Selma.

The other members of the committee are Jackie Curry, administrative assistant and dean of student affairs at LBWCC; Diaon Cook, English/reading instructor at LBWCC; Ramona Franklin, psychology/sociology instructor at LBWCC; Martha Simmons, executive director of communications in the Alabama Department of Postsecondary Education; James Perdue, probate judge of Crenshaw County; Jeddo Bell, mayor pro-tem of Greenville; Allen Foster, administrator of Mizell Memorial Hospital; Brenda Petty, administrator of the Covington County Commission; Tucson Roberts, director of Covington County Economic Development Commission; and David Walters, retired.

Cooper said the search committee will begin meeting in October in the process of narrowing the original 50 applicants down to a final five semifinalists and two alternates. The committee will interview those five semifinalists on Tues., Oct. 28, and Postsecondary Chancellor Bradley Byrne will interview them on Wed., Oct. 29. Byrne will then make a recommendation to the Board of Education on Tues., Nov. 11.

The state board hopes to have a new president in place by Jan. 1, 2009.