EPCC Administrator selected for top fellowship for community college leaders


EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) — Dr. Julie Penley, Vice President of Research, Accreditation & Planning at El Paso Community College, was named by The Aspen Institute College Excellence Program as one of 40 leaders selected for the 2020-21 class of the Aspen Rising Presidents Fellowship.

The fellowship is a highly selective leadership program preparing the next generation of community college presidents to transform institutions to achieve higher and more equitable levels of student success.

“The Aspen Rising President’s fellowship cadre of mentors and program leaders will undoubtedly contribute to changes in community colleges across the country and I am honored to be part of this cohort,” Dr. Penley said.   “The Aspen Fellowship will help me to grow as an employee and leader, which in turn will impact the work I do on behalf of students.”

The Rising Presidents Fellows will embark on a 10-month fellowship beginning in July 2020.

Dr. Penley has worked at EPCC since 2000. Prior to taking her current position in 2017, she served as Associated Vice President of Instruction ad Student Success, as a Dean at the Mission del Paso Campus and as a Psychology Professor at the Valle Verde Campus.

“Dr. Penley has a sincere appreciation for serving community college students and is uniquely positioned with robust understanding of higher education needs,” Dr. William Serrata, EPCC President said.  “Her valuable experience will serve the program and her colleagues well.”

While the traditional pathway to becoming college presidents has excluded women and people of color, the incoming class of Aspen Rising Presidents Fellows is composed of 70 percent women and 61 percent people of color, representing instututions of varying sizes and locations.

To date, 42 Rising Presidents Fellowship alumni have gone on to become presidents of community colleges across the country.

2020-21 Aspen Rising Presidents Fellows

  • Margaret Annunziata, Davidson County Community College (NC)
  • Gita Bangera, Bellevue College (WA)
  • Kaylyn Bondy, Williston State College (ND)
  • Naima Brown, Santa Fe College (FL)
  • Monica Brown, Montgomery College (MD)
  • DeAnna Burt, South Central College (MN)
  • Monica Castaneda, Glendale Community College (AZ)
  • Tamara Clunis, Amarillo College (TX)
  • Mildred Coyne, Broward College (FL)
  • Renee Craig-Marius, Reedley College (CA)
  • Mark Curtis-Chávez, College of DuPage (IL)
  • Chrissy Davis, Spokane Falls Community College (WA)
  • Tawny Dotson, Clover Park Technical College (WA)
  • Kurt Ewen, Houston Community College (TX)
  • Mary Gutierrez, Diablo Valley College (CA)
  • Susan Guzman-Trevino, Temple College (TX)
  • Paul Hernandez, Mount Wachusett Community College (MA)
  • Lloyd Holmes, Monroe Community College (NY)
  • Jennifer Kent, Ranger College (TX)
  • Kimberly Lowry, Lone Star College – Houston North (TX)
  • Ali Mageehon, Southwestern Oregon Community College (OR)
  • Corey McCray, Tidewater Community College (VA)
  • Donna McDaniel, Texarkana College (TX)
  • Brian Merritt, Central Carolina Community College (NC)
  • Scott Newman, Oklahoma State University Institute of Technology (OK)
  • Mayra Olivares-Urueta, Tarrant County College (TX)
  • Tammi Oyadomari-Chun, University of Hawaii (HI)
  • Julie Penley, El Paso Community College (TX)
  • Dilcie Perez, Cerritos College (CA)
  • Nicole Reaves, Northern Virginia Community College (VA)
  • Star Rivera Lacey, San Diego Continuing Education (CA)
  • Irene Robles-Lopez, Pima Community College (AZ)
  • Vince Rodriguez, Coastline Community College (CA)
  • Kate Smith, Rio Salado Community College (AZ)
  • Jackie Thomas, Lone Star College-Tomball (TX)
  • Lena Tran, San Jose City College (CA)
  • Joel Welch, Western Piedmont Community College (NC)
  • Kristina Whalen, Las Positas College (CA)
  • Jermaine Whirl, Greenville Technical College (SC)
  • Jonathan Woodward, Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College (MS)

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