KCC Board of Trustees praises President Mark O’Connell

KCC President Mark O'Connell speaks during an event at the RMTC.

The Kellogg Community College Board of Trustees this week completed its annual evaluation of President Mark O’Connell and praised the College’s top administrator as an energetic leader who has created positive relationships, communicated effectively and moved the institution in the right direction during challenging times.

The Board had appointed O’Connell, formerly the College’s vice president of administration and finance, as interim president in March 2015 and later as president in January 2016.

“We continue to appreciate President O’Connell’s vision and leadership at KCC and we’re grateful for his abiding dedication to this great institution,” said Board Chair Steve Claywell. “As president, Mr. O’Connell has established an environment of open and honest communication, engaged the faculty and staff in a variety of ways, addressed budget deficits without harming the quality of instruction and renewed the College’s focus on providing excellent learning environments for our students.”

Trustees noted O’Connell’s role in:

  • Strengthening the College’s strategic planning process
  • Securing millions of dollars from the Battle Creek Tax Increment Finance Authority and State of Michigan to pay for additions and renovations at the Regional Manufacturing Technology Center
  • Managing tight budgets with proactive spending controls
  • Building trust with community partners
  • Communicating and building relationships with the Board of Trustees

The Board’s evaluation included ratings of O’Connell in 10 specific areas related to the mission and vision of the College, resource generation, Board priorities and other current strategies.

In response to the evaluation, O’Connell said he is deeply grateful for the many KCC employees who have risen to the challenges created by declining enrollments and declining budgets in recent years.

“It’s an honor to lead this organization and it’s an honor to work with people who have stepped up to move the College forward given all the challenges we’ve had,” O’Connell said. “We’ve made a lot of progress and we have more work to do, but we remain committed to doing whatever we can to ensure student success in the coming year.”

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