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PCC President Dan Moriarty Announces Retirement

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Dan Moriarty, president of Portland Community College since 1986, announced to the PCC board last week that he will retire effective September 2001.

Moriarty told the board he wanted to give them sufficient notice to conduct a search for his replacement and to let the college community know about his plans before the faculty left for the summer. "By the time I leave, I’ll have served as PCC president for 15 years, and I can’t imagine a better job. I have very much enjoyed my years here, and am confident that PCC is well poised to continue its tradition of outstanding service to the community," Moriarty said.

Moriarty will leave the college at a time of unprecedented growth. When he took over as president in 1986, headcount enrollment was 60,000. Today it is more than 90,000. In 1986 the college had just passed an adequate tax base and was in a period of recovery after declaring financial exigency months before. During Moriarty’s tenure, the Cascade and Rock Creek campuses became full-fledged campuses and enrollment increased by approximately 66 percent. Thanks to the passage of a $62 million bond measure in 1992, the college opened two additional workforce training centers in central Portland and in Washington County to better meet the needs of its growing community. In 1998, the college purchased and renovated property in Northeast Portland which, with the existing Southeast Center, now comprises four workforce training centers across PCC’s district. Moriarty has been active in local, state and national educational organizations and issues. He served as chair of the board of directors of the American Association of Community Colleges in 1995-96 and as a member of the executive board of the American Council on

Education and on its Commission on Teacher Education. He is currently a member of the

board of the Northwest Association of Schools and Colleges, which accredits educational

institutions. He has been president of COMBASE, an educational consortium of community colleges and president of the National Council of Instructional Administrators. Moriarty has also served on the board of the Portland Chamber of Commerce, the Private Industry Council, Portland Leaders Roundtable, City of Portland Future Focus, the St. Vincent Hospital Advisory Board and the Business Education Compact.

Moriarty holds a doctoral degree in higher education from George Washington University. His master’s and bachelor’s degrees are both from Catholic University in Washington, DC. His career spans 39 years in education, both at the community college and K-12 levels. Before coming to Portland, Moriarty served as president of Triton Community College and was faculty member and student affairs administrator at Baltimore County (Maryland) Community College. Moriarty and his wife have three grown children who live in Chicago, New Jersey and San Francisco.

PCC board chair Harold Williams said he expects the board will do a national search to find a new president for PCC. "This college is one of the finest in the nation," Williams said. "Dan Moriarty’s shoes will be hard to fill, and the board is sorry to see him leave. But he’s ready to do some different things with his life and we respect that decision. So, we will definitely take our time to make sure we can find the best person for the next period in PCC’s history."

Moriarty is PCC’s third president. Founding President Amo De Bernardis served from 1961 to 1979. John Anthony was president from 1980 to 1985. Jim Van Dyke served as acting president during 1985-86, and Moriarty took over in the summer of 1986.

About James Hill

James G. Hill, an award-winning journalist and public relations writer, has been the Communications Specialist for the Office of Public Affairs at Portland Community College since November of 1999. A graduate of Portland State University, J... more »

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