The Leadership Team
Community college leadership is complex and evolving. In addition, many of the most tenured college presidents are retired or retiring in the coming years. It is imperative that new and emerging leaders have a solid knowledge of the sector, its history, and its potential in order to ensure that community colleges remain relevant, flexible, and affordable for the millions of students they serve.
The John E. Roueche Center for Community College Leadership at Kansas State University provides proven, effective programs to advance the next generation of community college leaders. I can think of no one better to address the leadership needs of today’s community college. Dr. Roueche’s long-standing commitment to educating leaders is unwavering. I am thrilled to know that this exceptional program will be a part of an equally exceptional university.
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Walter G. Bumphus, Ph.D., President and CEO, American Association of Community Colleges
John E. Roueche, Ph.D.
The program is founded on the 40-plus year legacy of Dr. John E. Roueche, a renowned scholar in community college leadership development, who served as the Sid W. Richardson Regents Chair and Professor at the University of Texas–Austin (1971-2012), during which time he hooded more than 600 doctoral graduates of whom more than 200 later became community college presidents throughout the nation. Dr. Roueche serves as the Executive Director of the Roueche Center and Senior Professor of Practice. His role is to lead the Center, expand the program nationally, foster program partnerships, and recruit.
Thirty-seven books and 175 articles document Dr. Roueche’s research agenda. At the University of Texas at Austin he directed more than $40 million in competitive grants. The recipient of many awards, Dr. Roueche received the 2016 Harry S. Truman Award from the American Association of Community Colleges and the 2012 Lifetime Leadership Achievement Award from the same organization. Further, the League for Innovation in the Community College named its Distinguished Leadership Award, The John E. Roueche and Terry O’Banion Leadership Award, in recognition of their extraordinary contributions to the scholarly literature related to community college leadership development.
Terry O’Banion, Ph.D.
Dr. Terry O’Banion, President Emeritus and Senior Fellow for the League for Innovation in the Community College, serves as Senior Professor of Practice at K-State. Dr. O’Banion has been a consultant to special projects for the League, MetLife Foundation, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the Chauncey Group International, Educational Testing Service, and more. Author of 17 books and over 200 monographs, chapters, and articles on the community college, Dr. O’Banion has consulted in over 1,000 community colleges. He oversees faculty evaluations and orientations, and contributes to program quality, publications, outreach, and development.
Margaretta B. Mathis, Ph.D.
Dr. Margaretta B. Mathis serves as Senior Director of the John E. Roueche Center for Community College Leadership and Professor of Practice, Department of Educational Leadership at Kansas State University. Before joining the community college field, Dr. Mathis served for 25 years in national association management, and in federal and state government relations and policy development, including professional positions with the Institute of Supply Management, Committee on Ways and Means, U.S. House of Representatives, and the Arizona Governor’s Community Policy Office. Prior to coming to K-State, she served as Senior Vice President, Roueche Graduate Center; and, as Senior Lecturer, The University of Texas-Austin where she played significant roles in national projects, including: Achieving the Dream, Board of Trustees Institute, College and Career Transitions Initiative, Governance Institute for Student Success, Developmental Education Initiative, and Center for Community College Student Engagement’s Survey of Entering Student Engagement. Her role is to co-lead the Center; direct operations and program updates, quality, and delivery; contribute to strategic directions, publications, relationship development; and, teach.
Cynthia Tanner, Ed.D.
Dr. Cynthia Tanner serves as Assistant Director, Programs and Projects at the John E. Roueche Center for Community College Leadership. Dr. Tanner assists in ongoing program improvement and operational effectiveness by helping to create and implement processes and procedures in support of doctoral students and faculty.
Prior to joining Kansas State University, Dr. Tanner worked in Higher Education for over 12 years, serving in various positions. She last served as dean of doctoral student services and academic support at National American University where she assisted the University’s National Community College Advisory Board and Roueche Graduate Center personnel in establishing and coordinating all graduate center programs, initiatives, and services. She previously worked in the area of student services as an academic and graduate advisor, and as an operations coordinator. In each of those roles, she greatly enjoyed building and fostering relationships with students, faculty, and administrators.
Cynthia holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Musical Theatre, a Master of Public Administration degree in Nonprofit Management, and a Doctor of Education degree in Community College Leadership. Specific to the mission of community colleges, Cynthia has a strong appreciation for how education can improve the quality of life for underrepresented populations in our communities.