Dr. JoAnna Schilling will become Cypress College’s 12th president. She was selected from among five finalists, who appeared on campus on March 30 for open-forum presentations to the campus community. The finalists also interviewed with District leadership and with the NOCCCD Board of Trustees last week.
Below is the announcement from Chancellor Dr. Cheryl Marshall:
Dear Cypress College Colleagues,
I am thrilled to announce the selection of Dr. JoAnna Schilling as the next President of Cypress College. Dr. Schilling brings a wealth of experience as an educational leader with strengths in partnership development, enrollment management, and accreditation. The people who have worked with her describe her as a transformational leader who is collaborative, empowering, inclusive, visionary, and personable. I believe she will build on your successes and lead the college forward to achieve your desired future.
I want to thank everyone who was involved in the selection process including the committee and those who organized and participated in the forums. Your input was an important part of the process.
Dr. Schilling will begin her service in July. Over the next few months she will be visiting the campus to get to know you and learn about your work. I hope you will join me in welcoming her to the Charger family.
North Orange County Community College District
Cheryl A. Marshall, Ed.D. / Chancellor
Dr. Schilling will succeed Dr. Bob Simpson, who retires at the end of June. Dr. Simpson assumed Cypress College’s CEO role in July, 2012 and is concluding a 30-year career in higher education.
During last week’s Open Forum on campus, Schilling said, “The students that we have in our community college are exceptional. You have grit, you have courage, you have knowledge, you have power, you have diversity, you have passion for what you do, and it really, truly transformed me and I wanted to be part of that.”
Dr. Schilling currently serves as Interim Vice President of Academic Affairs at Rio Hondo College, where she also previously served in multiple roles as the Dean of Arts and Cultural Programs, Continuing and Contract Education, and Interim Vice President of Academic Affairs from 2006-2012. From 2012 to 2016, Dr. Schilling served at Cerritos College as Vice President of Academic Affairs/Assistant Superintendent.
Dr. Schilling has a doctorate in education from Oregon State University, an MFA in Playwriting from Carnegie Mellon University, and a BA in English from Smith College. She currently serves as the co-chair on the Chancellor’s Office Curriculum Inventory project (COCI) and also sits on the statewide Chief Instructional Officers (CIO) Executive Board representing the Orange County/Los Angeles County region. Other previous statewide community college committees include the strategic planning committee for the LA/OC regional consortium, and as the CIO rep on the 3csn advisory committee.
Dr. Schilling is a staunch advocate for student success; under her leadership Cerritos was awarded two Gates Foundation grants to reduce textbook costs and support faculty in the development of OER materials. She has overseen three HSI Title V grants, totaling over 10M, all focused on providing academic support for underrepresented communities, a 2.4M DOL grant that created partnerships between the Retail Management program at Cerritos College and several national grocery associations, and is proud that Rio Hondo was recently the only community college in the state to receive a Basic Skills Transformation grant and the Basic Skills Pilot Partnership grant, totaling 3.5M over three years to help move the needle on developmental education at the college. At both institutions, Dr. Schilling initiated K12 and K16 Summits with district high schools and local CSU partners focused on the remediation barriers that inhibit successful college completion. Rio Hondo is also a pilot college for multiple statewide initiatives including the California Assessment Initiative (CAI) Open Education Initiative (OEI) and the Multiple Measures Assessment Project (MMAP).
Schilling is an accomplished playwright and screenwriter, as well as a classically trained vocalist. Prior to her experience in higher education, she was a literary associate and educator in the professional conservatory at South Coast Repertory Theatre. She is the author of recent journal publications in the Community College Journal of Research and Practice, Community College Enterprise, and Management Learning, was a contributing editor at Dog Fancy Magazine, and is the author of three “Dog Lover Companion” books for Avalon Travel Publishing/Perseus Books.
Schilling served on the boards of the Rio Hondo Symphony Association, the East Whittier Arts Foundation, as well as serving as a juror for the Newport Beach Film Festival and on the California Arts Council. She and her husband are members of the Society of Fellows at the Huntington Library and Gardens in San Marino, CA. and are strong supporters of the arts in their community.
Cypress College Presidential Search
3/30/2017 — President Finalists Speak on Campus
3/16/2017 — Five President Candidates Identified as Finalists; Forum on March 30
9/14/2016 — President Simpson Announces Retirement at Academic-Year’s End
6/28/2012 — Dr. Bob Simpson Appointed Cypress College’s 11th President, Assuming Duties on July 2