August 14, 2013 -- The president of Dutchess Community College, Dr. D. David Conklin, has announced that he will retire at the expiration of his contract in August 2014. Currently the second longest-serving president in the State University of New York system, Conklin will have led DCC for 22 years upon his retirement. The 12-month notice, stipulated in the president’s contract to allow the College sufficient time to conduct a search for a successor, was submitted to the DCC Board of Trustees earlier this month and announced at the August 13 board meeting.
“While the board had hoped the president would accept another contract extension, we respect and understand his decision to retire at the end of his current commitment,” said Thomas LeGrand, Chair of the DCC Board of Trustees. “Dave has provided the institution with exemplary leadership over the past two decades, and his work with faculty and staff to enhance academic programs, services and facilities has resulted in Dutchess Community College being one of the most highly regarded community colleges in the SUNY system. His knowledge, commitment and responsible stewardship have earned the college a reputation for providing a quality, affordable education that prepares students for success.”
LeGrand also commended Conklin for the volunteerism he has demonstrated within our community during his tenure. The president has served on numerous nonprofit boards and participated in many initiatives designed to enhance the mid-Hudson Valley. He served for 16 years as Chair of the Dutchess/Poughkeepsie Empire Zone Administrative Board, which under his leadership was recognized as the most successful organization of its kind in the state.
“It truly is an honor and a privilege to serve as president of Dutchess Community College and work with such a dedicated and supportive Board of Trustees, county government, faculty, staff and Foundation board,” said Conklin. “I am anticipating another productive year ahead and while retirement will present a major transition for me personally, I am looking forward to starting a new chapter in my life.”
Since Conklin became president of the college in 1992, enrollment has increased nearly 40%; the college now attracts 36% of all college-bound high school graduates in Dutchess County -- among the highest capture rates of any community college in the state.
Other accomplishments under Conklin’s leadership:
- Construction of the Washington Center for Science and Art
- Relocation and expansion of the library
- Creation of a one-stop Student Services Center
- Addition of a day care center
- Opening of a residence hall
- Maintenance of the lowest tuition in the state for 14 consecutive years
- Establishment of endowed faculty chairs
- Creation of a scholarship for students in the top 10% of their high school
- Growth in Foundation assets from $280,000 to $8.5 million
- Acquisition of $2.6 million in campus artwork at no taxpayer expense
The Board of Trustees will begin the presidential search process over the next few months.