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Northern Oklahoma College Names 3 Finalists in Presidential Search

Dr. HarrisDr. McMillinDr. Riedel

Pictured (L-R):  Dr. Clark Harris, Dr. Wayne McMillin, Dr. Herbert Riedel

Northern Oklahoma College Names 3 Finalists in Presidential Search

Three finalists have been selected in the search for the new president of Northern Oklahoma College.

The finalists (in alphabetical order) are Dr. Clark Harris, Special Assistant to the President, Laramie County Community College in Wyoming; Dr. Wayne McMillin, Dean of the Northwestern Oklahoma State University – Enid campus; and Dr. Herbert Riedel, Adjunct Professor, University of South Carolina – Salkehatchie and President Emeritus of Lurleen B. Wallace Community College in Alabama.

Regent Jodi Cline, Chair of the NOC Board of Regents and search committee, said after a nationwide search, nineteen qualified candidates applied for the position and ten were selected during the first-round interviews in March.

The committee invited six for second-round interviews on Thursday, April 15, and narrowed the field to three finalists.

The finalists have been invited to participate in three separate town hall events with Northern Oklahoma College students, employees, board members and community and business leaders.

The events are as follows:

Tuesday, April 20 with Dr. Wayne McMillin

11:00 – 11:45 a.m., NOC Tonkawa, Renfro Center

1:45 – 2:30 p.m., NOC Stillwater, Room 205

3:45 – 4:30 p.m., NOC Enid, Gantz Center, Montgomery Hall

Wednesday, April 21 with Dr. Clark Harris

11:00 – 11:45 a.m., NOC Enid, Gantz Center, Montgomery Hall

1:45 – 2:30 p.m., NOC Tonkawa, Renfro Center

3:45 – 4:30 p.m., NOC Stillwater, Room 205

Friday, April 23 with Dr. Herbert Riedel

11:00 – 11:45 a.m., NOC Stillwater, Room 205

1:45 – 2:30 p.m., NOC Tonkawa, Renfro Center

3:45 – 4:30 p.m., NOC Enid, Gantz Center, Montgomery Hall

Each town hall will last 45 minutes with the following format: introduction of candidate and candidate opening statement, questions from the moderator, and candidate closing remarks. The candidate’s presentations will also be livestreamed for those who cannot attend in person. The NOC community will have an opportunity to provide feedback on each candidate through a survey with collected responses sent directly to the NOC Board members (responses due no later than Monday, April 26) for consideration in their final decision.

Following campus visits, Regent Jodi Cline will present the top three finalists to the Northern Oklahoma College Board of Regents for final approval. It is hoped to have the new president in place by July 1, 2021.

Biographical information on the three finalists is listed below in alphabetical order:

Clark Harris, Ph.D.  Dr. Clark Harris has been an educator for more than 30 years, bringing a passion and commitment for student success. His goal is to provide students life-changing skills for dynamic careers and life. He has been dedicated to fulfilling the community college mission, while serving as a community college administrator for 16 years. He believes community colleges should be integral to the community, creating high demand, high wage career and technical programs; well-articulated transfer programs; adult education, workforce training programs that serve regional businesses; and service to our diverse communities. He attended Johnson County Community College, transferring to Kansas State University, earning his B.S. in Agricultural Education and an M.S. in Adult and Occupational Education. He earned a Ph.D. in Career and Technical Education (CTE) at the University of Missouri.

He brings an inspiring, innovative, entrepreneurial spirit, with an open, inclusive leadership style. Dr. Harris has extensive experience building partnerships with K-12 schools, higher education and industry partners. He has online learning expertise, in-depth knowledge of CTE and vast experience in identifying and developing nimble programs that will address the ever-evolving business and industry needs.

Dr. Harris is employed at Laramie County Community College (LCCC), where he has served as Vice President of Academic Affairs and currently serves as Special Assistant to the President where he leads the Albany County Campus (ACC). At the ACC he is responsible for student services, academics, the campus budget and all aspects of operation. His responsibility at LCCC has also included leadership for Schools of Arts & Humanities; Business, Agriculture & Technical Studies; Health Science & Wellness, and Math & Sciences. He has had responsibility for Adult Education; Community Education; Outreach to off-campus sites; and Workforce & Professional Development. Other departments in his charge included the Center for Excellence in Teaching, High School Programs, the Library, Learning Commons and the Testing Center.

LCCC was selected as one of 13 colleges to participate in the American Association of Community Colleges Guided Pathways 2.0 project, to enhance enrollment, retention and student success. Dr. Harris provided leadership as co-chair of the initiative making extensive changes across academic and student service functions including reorganizing advising, setting instructional excellence standards, overhauling general education, developing structured degree program curriculum maps, updating all course & program competencies, developing co-requisite developmental math & English courses, streamlining the college admissions process, and developing seven overarching career pathways to help students focus.

Dr. Harris was a champion for equity, as he served as Dean of Technology at Mott Community College, in Flint Michigan. In 2011, the Aspen Institute ranked Mott as one of America’s “Top Ten” community colleges. The Technology Division was a robust, inclusive, positive, entrepreneurial division that included computer information, and all of the industrial & trades programs. Dr. Harris taught 15+ years in the high school, community college and university. He was also executive director at an award-winning national curriculum center, located in Stillwater, OK. A few of his state and national leadership positions include: president of Michigan Occupational Deans Administrative Council (including 28 community colleges, a tribal college and a state university), executive committee member of the WICHE Western Alliance of Community College Academic Leaders, and member of the Kansas FFA Executive Committee. He has extensive marketing and public relations experience, and he has presented over 100 significant national, regional and state conference presentations.

Dr. Harris and his wife Paula, a nurse educator, are very family oriented with three adult sons. He values the importance of community and has provided service to the Laramie Chamber Business Alliance Board, Boy Scouts of America, Rotary International, church, youth and community organizations.

Wayne McMillin, Ph.D. Wayne McMillin was born in Norfolk Virginia and moved from coast to coast during his father’s military career. In 1977 upon his father’s retirement from the Navy, they settled in Cleo Springs, Oklahoma. He is a 1983 graduate of Aline-Cleo High School, where he met his wife, Lori (Thomas) McMillin.

He received a B.S. degree in psychology from Northwestern Oklahoma State University in 1988, a M.A. degree in experimental psychology from the University of Central Oklahoma in 1994, and a Ph.D. in Educational Psychology from Oklahoma State University in 1999.

Early in his career he worked in mental health, provided adjunct instruction, engaged in research support and served at the FAA’s Civil Aero Medical Institute as a statistician/manager. He joined NWOSU in 1997 and rose to the rank of Endowed Chair and tenured faculty member in the Psychology department.  In 2011 he was promoted and is currently the Dean of the NWOSU-Enid campus.

He serves in many capacities at the University, including undergraduate and graduate advisor, study abroad coordinator and is a member of NWOSU senior staff. He is a member of the psychology faculty and has taught courses in 4 different departments for the University.

Over the years he has participated in many civic and community boards and committees. He was selected to the Oklahoma Educators Academy, Leadership Greater Enid, and was a scholar at the Oxford Round Table in England. He is a current member of Enid Rotary, Enid Chamber, Elevate Enid Education Committee, and Enid Metropolitan Area Human Services Commission on Education. Additionally, he has served as a board member for Enid Higher Education Council, Rotary, Youth and Family Services, Enid Soccer Club and the United Way. He is also a member of Leadership Oklahoma, class XXIX and was selected as a 2016 Vance Airforce Base Honorary Commander. Currently he is a member of the Leadership Oklahoma Master Class of 2020-21.

Wayne and Lori have 2 children, Meghan and Saxon Mahan, and 2 grandsons, Knox and Lennon, of Dallas, TX. and son Keegan McMillin of Norman, OK.

 Herbert Riedel, Ph.D.  Motivated by a lifelong passion to make transformative changes for colleges and help students achieve their dreams, Dr. Herbert H. J. Riedel has served in several capacities in higher education, including as faculty member teaching undergraduate and graduate courses in mathematics, research center deputy director, vice president, and president.  His energetic, collaborative leadership style impacted large research universities, a four-year liberal arts military college, and technical, and community colleges, in Alabama, Florida, South Carolina, and Texas.

He is internationally educated, having attended 6 schools on 4 continents.  He earned masters and doctorate degrees in the field of Pure Mathematics from the prestigious University of Waterloo, Canada.  Dr. Riedel is knowledgeable in 6 languages—fluent in German and conversational in Spanish. The son of German immigrants, he is a native Canadian and naturalized US citizen.

For over ten years, Dr. Riedel served as president of Lurleen B. Wallace Community College in Alabama.  His successful tenure was characterized by many innovations, including new program offerings in advanced manufacturing, health-care, and short-term skills training, the institution of an honors program, the college’s first student housing complex, redesign of the developmental mathematics program, and several student success initiatives.  In January 2014, his college was named a national Bellwether Finalist Award winner for its innovative public-private partnership to establish student housing.  In 2018, his college was recognized by the American Association of Community Colleges with the Finalist Award of Excellence in Student Success for dramatic increases in graduation rates and other measures, including the highest fall-to-fall retention rates in the state.

Dr. Riedel’s approach to education is student centered and focuses on the college mission and continuous quality improvement.  He served on the Chancellor’s Budget Allocation Committee and co-chaired the state’s Dual Enrollment Policy Review Committee.  He also served three times as a panelist in the University of Alabama Community College Leadership Academy and was the featured speaker on the topic of Diversity at Auburn University at Montgomery.  Dr. Riedel represented the Alabama Community College System on the Alabama Council of Presidents, and served for two years as Chair of the AGSC/STARS committee, in which capacity he initiated the first statewide transfer student success conference, jointly hosting both universities and two-year colleges. He is also a past president of the Alabama Community College System Presidents’ Association.

Dr. Riedel’s work with two college foundations resulted in several innovations to benefit students, including an annual mini-grant program, a summer incentive grant program, foundation-owned student housing, and the merger of the two foundations.  He was responsible for raising $13 million in federal grants and $3.4 million in private philanthropy, leading to the doubling of foundation net assets.  In Texas, Dr. Riedel developed a friendship with automotive icon Carroll Shelby, who personally authorized the establishment of the Carroll Shelby Automotive Technology program, and contributed over $2 million for scholarships and a named chair position.

Dr. Riedel and his wife, Lisa, have two sons, both of whom graduated from the college where he was president. A lover of classical music, Dr. Riedel founded the Andalusia Chamber Music Society, which brings high quality live classical music to the community.  His passion for students and continuous growth and development drove him to start the Alabama Wadokai Aikido Dojo, were he taught classes in this rigorous and dynamic martial art. In his spare time, he repairs farm equipment, including an old diesel tractor, tunes his classic cars for performance and does weight training for powerlifting.  He was active in four local Chambers of Commerce, the Covington County Economic Development Commission, the Alabama Partnership for Children, the Andalusia Ballet, Rotary International, and he enjoys attending community, church, and cultural events.  As an action-oriented, results driven motivational leader, he is now eager to apply his extensive experiences in a new forward-looking setting, to make lasting changes, while embracing the latest emerging technology as well as ground-breaking teaching and learning approaches.