The Dallas County Community College District’s board of trustees approved a recommendation submitted by Dr. Joe May, DCCCD’s chancellor, to appoint Dr. Joseph Seabrooks as the new president of Cedar Valley College. The board’s vote came during a special meeting on Wed., June 29.
Seabrooks currently serves as president of Metropolitan Community College – Penn Valley in Missouri, located in Kansas City’s urban core. He will begin his tenure as Cedar Valley’s new CEO beginning Sept. 1, 2016.
Dr. Jennifer Wimbish, Cedar Valley’s current president, announced her Aug. 31 retirement earlier this year.
“We are excited to welcome Dr. Joe Seabrooks to Cedar Valley College and to the Dallas County Community College District,” said May. “We conducted an extensive national search with the assistance of Greenwood/Asher Associates and interviewed more than 50 applicants who were dynamic and diverse. We interviewed four finalists who spent time on Cedar Valley’s campus with the college community.”
May added, “Dr. Seabrooks brings with him a commitment to leadership, academics, student success and diversity. He understands the community and the students he will serve, and his experience enhances our district’s leadership team.”
Seabrooks said, “I am grateful and excited for the opportunity to work with the talented and committed professionals at Cedar Valley College. For nearly 40 years, Cedar Valley has been the great economic equalizer for the people of South Dallas, Lancaster and surrounding communities.
“It is indeed a chance of a lifetime to join Chancellor Joe May and his incredible team at the Dallas County Community College District as we work together to expand the power of education to those who need us the most,” he added. “I look forward to working with the college, our community and all of our partners to fulfill Cedar Valley’s vision to be ‘a premier college transforming lives and communities.'”
Cedar Valley’s new president began his tenure as president at MCC-Penn Valley in 2011; he was appointed president of MCC-Blue River in 2007. Before he joined MCC, Seabrooks served as assistant vice chancellor for student affairs at the University of Arkansas-Fayetteville, where he was responsible for the Enhanced Learning Center, the university’s First-Year Experience programs, international students and scholars, the Off-Campus Connections office, student support services and pre-college programs.
He also served the University of Missouri-Kansas City for more than 10 years in a number of capacities, including assistant director for alumni relations, director of minority student affairs and executive director for the Diversity in Action office.
The Atlanta, Georgia, native holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology; a master’s and educational specialist degree in higher education administration; and an interdisciplinary doctorate in urban leadership, policy studies and education administration, all from the University of Missouri-Kansas City.
Seabrooks is the recipient of numerous awards and honors, including: the 2016 Phi Theta Kappa Shirley B. Gordon Award of Distinction; PTK’s 2015 Distinguished College President Award for the Missouri region; the 2013 Business Partner of the Year Award, Guadalupe Center Inc., which was presented for MCC-Penn Valley’s outstanding contributions to the Hispanic community in Kansas City; and, among others, the 2013 ACE Award from the Greater Kansas City Chamber of Commerce, presented annually to culturally diverse mid- to senior-level managers who achieve excellence and have an impact that exceeds expectations for their employers and the company’s bottom line.
Seabrooks was inducted into the Black Achievers’ Society of Greater Kansas in 2010. A leadership award was established in his name at the University of Missouri-Kansas and is given annually to a UMKC professional for exceptional dedication, service and empowerment which he or she provides to the university’s students. Seabrooks was the inaugural recipient in 2005.
The new Cedar Valley president, a first-generation college graduate, is married to Leslie and is the father of two sons, Joe Tre and Jackson. He refers to them as his “greatest accomplishments.”