The Nevada System of Higher Education (NSHE) Board of Regents voted to appoint Dr. DeRionne Pollard as Nevada State College’s next president. She becomes the 8th president of the 19-year-old college.
Pollard, who is currently president of Montgomery College in Maryland, will begin Aug. 16 and serve a 4-year contract.
“President Pollard is a highly respected educator and administrator. Her experience boosting student success and creating external partnerships at Montgomery College will serve NSC well,” NSHE Chancellor Melody Rose said. “Her knowledge and understanding of our student population affords her the opportunity to tell NSC’s vital story as its primary ambassador. I am confident Dr. Pollard is the right person to lead Nevada State at this time.”
Dr. Pollard was born in Chicago and earned a bachelor’s degree from Iowa State University in 1993, a master’s degree in English from Iowa State University in 1995, and a Ph.D., with a specialization in Educational Leadership and Policy Studies, from Loyola University in 2005.
Prior to being named president of Montgomery College, Dr. Pollard was an assistant professor of English at the College of Lake County (Illinois), where she served as acting division dean of the Communication Arts, Humanities, and Fine Arts Division, faculty coordinator for the Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning, assistant vice president of educational affairs, and vice president of educational affairs.
“I am truly honored and humbled by this appointment,” President Pollard said. “I look forward to partnering with members of the campus and the southern Nevada communities, as we work together to grow Nevada’s only state college and collaborate to meet the needs of our public and private partners.”
Prior to taking the helm at Montgomery College as its first Black woman president in 2010, Dr. Pollard served as administrative and instructional president of Las Positas College in California.
As president of Montgomery College, Dr. Pollard expanded the infrastructure of the institution, launched the Montgomery College Innovation Fund, and developed and bolstered partnerships with government, businesses, nonprofit organizations, and other educational institutions.
Montgomery College, the largest community college in Maryland, offers more than 130 degree and certificate programs with three campuses in the state, serving more than 50,000 students annually.
“President Pollard is committed to and understands our state college’s mission and its unique place in Nevada’s higher education landscape,” said Board of Regents Chair Mark Doubrava. “Her breadth of experience will help lead Nevada State into the future.”
President Pollard was one of four finalists who interviewed with students, faculty, employees, and community members this week. The ad hoc NSC President Search Committee and advisory members, made up of 25 members, including members of the Board of Regents, faculty, classified staff, students, and community stakeholders, overwhelmingly recommended President Pollard for the job on Wednesday.
The search committee used in-person interviews and live-stream technology to ensure an inclusive and transparent search process, while conducting the search in consideration for the health and well-being of all those involved.
“I want to thank everyone involved in the search, especially the students, faculty, staff and community members who participated virtually and in-person,” said Regent Amy Carvalho, who chaired the ad hoc NSC President Search Committee. “I want to also thank Chancellor Rose for selecting four outstanding finalists to choose from. I believe the committee made an excellent decision in recommending Dr. Pollard to be Nevada State’s next president.”
Regent Carvalho added that she is thankful to AGB Search for including diversity training for the members of the search committee and for developing a large and diverse national pool of candidates.