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WCC Names Miles Its First New President In 43 Years

Newly named WCC president Dr. Belinda S. Miles is an administrator at Cuyahoga Community College in Cleveland.
Newly named WCC president Dr. Belinda S. Miles is an administrator at Cuyahoga Community College in Cleveland. Photo Credit: Westchester Community College

VALHALLA, N.Y. -- Westchester Community College will have a new president for the first time in more than four decades.

Dr. Belinda S. Miles, a nationally recognized educator and current administrator at Cuyahoga Community College in Cleveland, has been selected to lead WCC, Daily Voice has learned. The State University of New York Board of Trustees voted to make the appointment official during their meeting in New York City Thursday. She succeeds Dr. Joseph Hankin, the nation’s longest serving community college president, who led the college for 42 years.

Miles, who has more 30 years experience in higher education, primarily at the community college level, was chosen after a national search. She will start her new position in January.

“I am looking forward to this opportunity to engage with students, faculty, staff, and the community to advance a comprehensive learning and success agenda," said Miles, who currently provost and executive vice president of Access, Learning and Success at Cuyahoga Community College. "Together we will work to expand Westchester Community College’s role in helping students achieve their academic and career goals."

David Swope, chair of the Westchester Community College Board of Trustees, said Miles' appointment will “usher in a new era here at the college."

"Her national standing as a leader in the field of community college administration, her awareness of the role of technology in higher education, and her knowledge of the changing role of community colleges will be important as we continue to expand our resources and add new educational offerings to the community," Swope said.

Michael Kaplowitz, chairman of the Westchester County Board of Legislators, also welcomed Miles.

“Westchester Community College is among the best public educational institutions in the country and Dr. Miles will uphold that standard," Kaplowitz said. "It is essential that we have an experienced, talented and dynamic leader for the Westchester Community College community, someone who has a clear vision for the college. I’m confident we’ve found that leader in Dr. Miles. The Board of Legislators looks forward to a long and productive partnership with Dr. Miles."

Hankin, the nation's longest-serving community college president who announced his retirement last year, had led WCC since 1971. Interim President John Flynn, Ph.D., will remain in that role until Miles' January start.

A Queens native, Miles received a B.A. from CUNY's York College and an M.A. from Columbia University Teachers College. Miles and her husband, Keith, will relocate to Westchester County.

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