Community college board announces Dr. Bryan Reece to become next chancellor

Chancellor Emeritus of California Community Colleges; former community college president; founder of organization using community colleges to address racism and discrimination in America

By Timothy Leong, Public Information Officer, CCCCD

Dr Bryan Reece. Photo: Norco College.

The Contra Costa Community College District (CCCCD) Governing Board held a special public meeting on Tuesday, September 22, 2020, and today is announcing their decision to begin contract negotiations with Dr. Bryan Reece to become the next Chancellor. The goal will be to place the contract for public review and approval at their regular meeting scheduled for Wednesday, October 14, 2020.

The announcement was made following a nationwide search that began in January 2020.  The selection process was paused in both March and April due to the transition to remote operations as a result of the pandemic and was restarted in September. Public forums were held last week for the finalist and a final interview was completed by the Governing Board.

Barrett praised the dedication and work conducted by the Search Committee and Collaborative Brain Trust Senior Consultant Dr. Brice Harris, a longtime California community college educator and Chancellor Emeritus of the California Community Colleges. In addition, the Governing Board acknowledged the hundreds of faculty, classified professionals, managers and community leaders who participated in the public forums and submitted comments to the trustees for consideration prior to their final decision.

About Dr. Bryan Reece

Dr. Reece with a Norco College graduate. Photo from his website.

Until last year, Reece was president of Norco College in Riverside County, California where he oversaw “approximately 450 employees, 15,000 students and a service area with over 300,000 residents. Expanded student enrollment by 9.6% and student completion of academic goals by 18.3% with transfers to the University of California (UC) system improving by 50%. Narrowed the equity gap with completion for students of color improving by 26%. Increased fundraising by 117%,” according to his website.

Also on his website, Reece shares about himself.

“I have been working in higher education for 30 years, with 15 years of senior management experience including a decade of community college administration (College President, VP of Academic Affairs, and Dean) and five years of private sector management. I hold a BA, MA and Ph.D. from the University of Southern California (USC). I taught Political Science as a tenured community college faculty member for 19 years and have a documented record of moving community colleges in directions that improve the academic success for students across all groups and have particular expertise with student populations from historically under-served communities. I have worked extensively with legislative bodies and government agencies at the local, state and federal levels and have a record of success with public-private partnerships and fundraising.”

According to his LinkedIn account, Reece attended USC from 1984 through 1990 for his undergrad and master’s degrees, and returned to the school from 2001-2005 for his doctorate.

Dr. Reece at a Norco College soccer pep rally. Photo from his website.

Last year, he founded the National Policy Agenda for Community Colleges (NPACC) to use community colleges to address racism and discrimination in the U.S. According to his website, “The primary goal of NPACC is to address social justice and equity at the national level through the work of American community colleges. NPACC is supported by a grassroots group of over 50 volunteers, including trustees, college presidents, administrators, faculty, staff, CC alumni, community members, and elected officials. We believe racism and discrimination in America must be addressed through a national strategy that recognizes and supports the leadership role community colleges play in working with students from historically underserved communities.”

According to his Twitter feed, Reece is writing a book about community colleges. In a July 23rd tweet, he introduced a series of essays based on his book, entitled “Community Colleges: A Good Kind of Subversion – An Ongoing Essay Series on Educational Inequities and How to Solve Them.”

According to the About page on his website, Reece was a cow milker at a dairy throughout high school and college in the 1980’s, providing him with both the necessary experience for fundraising and a firm grip when shaking hands.

Allen Payton contributed to this report.

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Dr. Reece Norco College soccer pep rally


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