Academy Class of 2014

Mari Acob-Nash, PhD

Mari Acob-Nash Mari has more than 26 years of experience advising students and directing international programs. She is currently the Dean for International Programs at Cascadia College. She also served as the Director for International Student Services at Edmonds Community College and as the Executive Director of International Programs at North Seattle College. Mari has her AAS degree from Edmonds Community College, her BA in Psychology from University of Washington and her MEd in Higher Education Administration from Western Washington University. She received her PhD in Education from Oregon State University with a concentration on Community College Leadership. She has extensive overseas recruitment experience and is actively involved in training and support for international student advisors across the United States. If not studying or working, her hobbies including hiking, attending concerts, hula and traveling.

Jim Brady

Jim has been with Spokane Falls Community College for 24 years, 17 as mathematics faculty and 7 as an instructional dean. During this time, he has been a strong advocate for improving success in STEM disciplines and currently serves on Spokane's STEM executive committee. Jim was one of a small group of math educators and advocates, who in 2003, began Washington's Transition Math Project, a statewide initiative to define common standards for college readiness in mathematics. Jim also was the primary advocate for SFCC's new planetarium, which has hosted over 10,000 students in two years of service. Jim has worked with SFCC's institutional research department for a number of years, looking to identify the barriers to success in mathematics and evaluate the effectiveness of the various strategies that have employed.

Terry Cox

Terry Cox is currently the Vice President for Workforce Development and Training at Edmonds Community College. During her WELA year, she was the Dean for Business, Engineering, and IT at North Seattle College and Terry has been working in the Washington community and technical college system since 2001. Her areas of interest are serving returning adults and development of BAS degrees. She holds a Doctor of Education (EdD) degree from UW Seattle, a Masters in Business Administration (MBA) from WSU, a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics from St. Martin's University, and an Associate of Arts degree from Centralia College.

Tonya Drake

Dr. Tonya Drake serves as the Special Assistant to the President for Equity and Inclusion at Edmonds Community College. She has with over 19 years of experience as a dynamic and engaged higher education leader. She holds a Ph.D. in Education Leadership and Policy Studies from Arizona State University, Master's from ASU, Bachelor's from University of Washington, and Associate's from Lower Columbia College. Her previous experience includes working for the University of Washington in a Federal TRIO program, Arizona State University in scholar recruitment, GateWay Community College in a Federal TRIO program, Arizona Board of Regents in state higher education policy, Maricopa Community Colleges in student affairs administration, and most recently as Shoreline Community College as the Chief Student Affairs Officer.

Jessica Gilmore

Jessica Gilmore has several years of experience between P-12 and higher education. Employed at Green River Community College since 1999, Jessica currently serves as Dean of Enrollment and Completion, with oversight of several functional areas within the Student Affairs division. Having taught in the P-12 system prior to transitioning to higher education, Jessica is interested in matters related to how the two educational systems can provide a more seamless experience for students. Jessica holds a B.A. in elementary education from Central Washington University and a M.Ed. in Educational Leadership and Policy Studies from the University of Washington. Jessica enjoys time with loved ones, reading, the outdoors and a good laugh.

Jason Gordon

Jason Gordon is a ctcLink WAVE Project Coordinator at the Washington State Board for Community and Technical Colleges (SBCTC). Prior to this role, he served as the Director of Financial Services at Bates Technical College and the Assistant Accounting Services Director at SBCTC. Jason graduated from the Evergreen State College, earning a Bachelor of Arts Degree with an emphasis in Accounting and from Brandman University, where he completed a Master's in Business Administration with an emphasis in Organizational Leadership. Jason lives in Lacey with his wife and two sons.

André C. Guzman

André C. Guzman is the Director of the Science Technology Engineering Mathematics (STEM) grant at Big Bend Community College. Since 2006 he has served in the Work First program and as the Opportunity Grant Coordinator, Disability Services Coordinator, and the Financial Aid Director at Big Bend CC. André received his A.A.S. from Big Bend CC, B.A.S. from Eastern Washington University and went on to obtain his Master's degree from Indiana University at Bloomington. André lives in Moses Lake with his wife and three daughters. He enjoys spending time with his family, grilling/BBQ, church, and serving others.

Wendy Hall

Wendy Lapic Hall is the Assoc. Vice President for Effectiveness and College Relations at Lower Columbia College (LCC). In this role, Wendy oversees Institutional Research, Assessment, College Relations, Marketing, and the ctcLink project. Wendy serves as the Accreditation Liaison Officer for the College and is the designated Public Information Officer as well. Prior to assuming this role, Wendy served as the Director of Institutional Research, Planning and Assessment at Lower Columbia College at LCC for eleven years. Before relocating to Southwest Washington, she worked at North Seattle College for eleven years, including over five years as the Director of Grants, Planning and Research/Title III Director. Wendy served as a Congressional staffer in Washington D.C. prior to starting her career in community college administration.

Wendy has a Bachelor's Degree in Political Science and Economics from Whitman College, and a Master's in Public Administration from the Daniel Evans School of Public Policy at the University of Washington.

Evelyn Hernandez

Evelyn Hernandez is the Executive Director of IT for Olympic College. She answers to the President of the college and is responsible for the technological direction of the institution. She works with the institution's leadership team and stakeholders to identify the strategic plan for technology and how it aligns with the institution's mission. She brings 20 years of Information Technology industry experience in both the public and private sectors. Evelyn Hernandez holds a BS in Computer Information Systems and in the midst of pursuing her Masters in CyberSecurity from the UW. She holds various Microsoft and CompTia certifications. When she is not engage with her professional and family duties, she likes to run outdoors, garden, hike, read and volunteer at the local K12 schools.

Chad Hickox

Chad Hickox has a Ph.D. in Philosophy and has been teaching since 1996. He is currently the Chief Data and Strategy Officer at South Seattle College, responsible for developing and implementing processes relating to strategic planning, program review, continuous improvement, accreditation, and institutional research. Previously, Chad was the Dean for Academic Programs, overseeing both the transfer and the developmental programs at South Seattle College. Chad was a tenured instructor at Macomb Community College near Detroit, Michigan before returning to his home in the Pacific Northwest. He has many interests, including having been a Divemaster and scientific diver for the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute in Panama. Chad also ferments his own mead, sauerkraut, pickles, and sourdough. He lives in West Seattle with his wife and two young sons.

Kevin McCarthy

Kevin McCarthy joined Lake Washington Institute of Technology as Vice President of Instruction in August 2013. Prior to his move to LWIT, McCarthy served as dean of the Health Sciences, Education and Wellness Institute at Bellevue College and as Associate Vice President of Instruction at Blue Mountain Community College. He moved to the northwest and community and technical college administration roles after teaching American history at the University of Georgia and the University of Mississippi. McCarthy's research explores intersections of race, gender, and law in the late-nineteenth-century American South. McCarthy began his career at the Colorado Rocky Mountain School, a progressive boarding-day school. McCarthy earned his B.A. at the University of Virginia and M.A. and Ph.D. degrees in American history at the University of Mississippi.

Wendy Rockhill, PhD

Wendy Rockhill serves as Dean for Science and Mathematics at Seattle Central College. Prior to becoming an instructional dean, Wendy served as full-time biology faculty and biology program coordinator. A continual life-learner, she returned to graduate school at the University of Washington to complete a PhD in Development Neurophysiology while teaching at Seattle Central. Prior to Seattle Central she earned a Master in Science degree in Zoology and a dual Bachelor degree in Zoology and French from Washington State University. Wendy has worked on strategic planning, accreditation, assessment, institutional research, Science/Technology/Engineering/Mathematics (STEM) programs, and College Council at Seattle Central College. She enjoys spending time with her son and friends, savoring great food and the outdoors.

JEB Thorton

J.E.B. S. Thornton (goes by JEB) is currently the Assistant Dean of Baccalaureate programs for Grays Harbor College. His time at GHC started in 2005 when he began as the Director of TRiO Student Support Services program. He has spent most of his college employment in student services and it has only been recently that he has moved into instruction. He holds a Master's degree in Human Development and Educational Leadership from Pacific Oaks College, and a Bachelor's with an emphasis in economics and public policy from The Evergreen State College. His spare time is spent with his wife Karen, their dog, Chloe, and a racecar.

Peter Williams

Dr. Peter G. Williams serves as the Dean of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics at Clark College, where he has been employed since 2011. Peter earned a Ph.D. from Oregon State University in Education with an emphasis in Community College Leadership. He also holds a Master of Science degree in Environmental Science, with an emphasis in Energy Policy, from Washington State University, along with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Geology and Environmental Education from the University of Vermont. Peter has been involved in higher education administration and teaching since 1989, with experience at Washington State University, Gonzaga University, Webster University, Whitman College, and Spokane Community College. Peter is a published professional photographer and writer, and an accomplished outdoor adventurer. He lives in Vancouver with his wife and two daughters.