Solemsaas finalist in NSCC prez search

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Rachel Solemsaas

It would be an “honor” and a “homecoming” for Rachel Solemsaas to be selected as the president of North Seattle Community College.

That’s what Solemsaas said when she was named as one of four finalists for the position.

Solemsaas received her master’s degree in public administration from the University of Washington and her doctorate in education from Washington State University. She is currently vice president for finance and administrative services at Truckee Meadows Community College in Reno, Nev. Before that, she served in administrative services at Bellevue College, as vice president of finance and operations at Edmonds Community College, and as chief financial officer at King County Department of Community and Human Services.

Thirty candidates applied for the North Seattle position, and seven made it to the semi-finalist list. Of the 30 applicants, five were women and nine were persons of color, according to NSCC.

The other three finalists are Warren J. Brown, Ed.D., executive vice president for instruction and student services at Seattle Central Community College; Daryl Campbell, J.D., interim president of Shoreline Community College; and Richard Penny, Ph.D., M.B.A., vice chancellor for advancement and external relations at University of Washington Bothell.

Solemsaas, who is of Filipino descent, is the only woman and also the only Asian American out of four the finalists.

The new president replaces former President Mark Mitsui, who left the college last summer to become deputy assistant secretary for community colleges in the U.S. Department of Education in Washington, D.C. Mary Ellen O’Keeffe, Ed.D, has filled in as interim president.Seattle Community Colleges chancellor Dr. Jill Wakefield is expected to announce the new president in April. The new president will assume the position on July 1. (end)

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