04/22/07 — Albertson officially new president of Wayne Community College

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Albertson officially new president of Wayne Community College

By Phyllis Moore
Published in News on April 22, 2007 2:01 AM

It's official.

Dr. Kay Albertson will be the fourth president of Wayne Community College effective July 1.

The State Board of Community Colleges met at Wayne Community on Friday, unanimously approving Dr. Albertson's selection, which had been announced last month by the local board of trustees.

Becoming the first female president at the college was only one of several historic aspects of the day. The on-site meeting had been scheduled well in advance, to coincide with the 50th anniversary celebration of the college.

When Dr. Ed Wilson, current president, announced in September he would be retiring June 29, the search for his replacement began with the possibility that his successor might be known when the state board convened.

But it's also rare, Wilson noted, for "the president of a college to be certified by the state board on the campus where they'll serve."

The local tie-ins abounded. Martin Lancaster, president of the state community college system, hails from Pikeville. He announced recently he plans to retire in 2008, so his board is now charged with searching for his replacement.

State board member Jimmie Ford of Goldsboro introduced Dr. Albertson's name into nomination.

But the process could have stalled. In the opening minutes of the board meeting, staff scurried in and out of the room making phone calls to absent members to achieve a quorum. Five members were contacted and participated via telephone.

The board briefly went into closed session to discuss Dr. Albertson's candidacy after which Dr. Linwood Powell, chairman of the personnel committee, introduced Ford.

"It is the first time in the history of the N.C. community college system that the state board has gone to a college and will nominate an employee of that college to become president," Powell said.

Ford called it a distinct pleasure to "nominate the next president of Wayne Community College, none other than Dr. Kay Albertson."

With that, the board affirmed the nominee.

"Wow!" Dr. Albertson said as she reached the podium. "You have to know that I'm extremely honored and humbled to have been selected by our own board of trustees and to have been confirmed by this very prestigious N.C. community college board. I'm absolutely without words."

On the threshold of becoming the college's fourth president, Dr. Albertson pledged to honor the legacy of her predecessor and uphold the mission and purpose of the community college system.

"It's very personal that I be selected today on this beautiful campus in the 50th year of Wayne Community College," she said. "I'm going to do my happy dance now."

Audrey Bailey, public information officer with the community college system, said Dr. Albertson's credentials were impressive.

"We're very happy about Dr. Albertson," she said. "Everyone knows her, loves her and respects her."