ACCT Announces Search for New Chief Executive Officer

September 23, 2020

The ACCT Board of Directors is pleased to announce the commencement of the search for a new CEO to succeed J. Noah Brown after his announced retirement, which takes effect in October, 2021. Noah has served as ACCT’s longest-serving CEO. 

The attached CEO profile and procedure for applications and nominations has been posted on the ACCT website and national advertisements will be placed in appropriate higher education publications shortly.


President and CEO Position Profile

The Board of Directors of the Association of Community College Trustees (ACCT) invites nominations and applications for the position of President and CEO of ACCT. The next President and CEO will be a proactive; diversity, equity, and inclusion-focused; team-oriented, visionary leader who is deeply committed to community college governance and is an experienced, disciplined manager who can successfully oversee and balance a budget of approximately $6,000,000 for a national, membership-based, non-profit organization.

Strategic Opportunities and Challenges

  • Strengthen ACCT as the most powerful voice in community college governance and provide forward-thinking leadership to increase the visibility and recognition of community colleges throughout the nation.
  • Successfully manage a multi-million-dollar annual budget and the Association’s investment accounts and annual reserves.
  • Increase trustee education by expanding online platforms and enhancing wraparound member services to best respond to the changing needs of member institutions.
  • Build collaboration and partnerships, strengthen interaction with wide-ranging constituents and serve as a highly visible spokesperson to increase ACCT’s impact throughout the nation.
  • Effect change in Congress and the Executive branch to advance community colleges.
  • Identify new sources of funding, engage with corporate partners, and spearhead grant-funded initiatives to advance student success, equity, and completion.
  • Increase ACCT’s membership during a period of uncertainty and beyond.
  • Lead ACCT’s strategic planning process working in partnership with the Board and engaging and building a strong bench of staff members.
  • Lead ACCT’s membership through the enrollment, teaching, and budgetary challenges of operating a community college in an ever-changing national climate.

Ideal Characteristics

  • A results-oriented leader focused on student success who is skilled in outreach and cultivating relationships.
  • A financially responsible steward who has strong financial acumen and a strong understanding of the budget process.
  • A forward-thinking and dynamic executive with a deep understanding of community college governing boards who can develop, empower, and inspire staff.
  • A passionate advocate with a demonstrated commitment to advancing social justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion.
  • A strategic thinker who actively engages all stakeholders.
  • An innovator with an entrepreneurial spirit who has a demonstrated ability to take strategic risks, develop deliberate and measurable goals and translate them into action.
  • A powerful, effective, and persuasive communicator who will tell the unique story of community colleges within the higher education landscape.
  • A forceful advocate who has experience with public policy advocacy or advocacy programs, and experience working with legislators and/or political decision makers.
  • A manager with experience upgrading an organization’s technology to current state-of-the-art functioning.
  • An entrepreneurial fundraiser who has successfully diversified funding streams.
  • A leader who understands and appreciates the distinct needs of urban, suburban, and rural community colleges.

Minimum Qualifications

  • An executive who demonstrates integrity, builds consensus, and maintains high standards.
  • A thought-leader with 5 years of impactful senior-level experience.
  • Extensive understanding of community colleges and higher education.
  • Experience managing a multi-million-dollar balanced budget.
  • An advanced degree from a regionally accredited institution is preferred.
  • An advocate for achieving broadly-supported higher education endeavors. 

For additional information, nominations or confidential inquiries please contact:

  • Ira Shepard, ACCT, General Counsel and Counsel, Saul Ewing Arnstein & Lehr, or 240-604-5476 (mobile)
  • Julie Golder, ACCT, Vice President of Search Services, or 202-384-5816 (mobile)

Applications and nominations are currently being accepted until the position is filled.

The target date for applications is: December 1, 2020.

To apply: Email your cover letter, resume and 5 – 7 references to

ACCT Board of Directors