QAC League of Women Voters Celebrates Sixth Anniversary with Lecture By Chesapeake College President Viniar

“The newly inaugurated and first woman president of Chesapeake College Science, Dr. Barbara A. Viniar, will be the keynote speaker on Monday, April 27 at the annual meeting and dinner of the Queen Anne’s County League of Women Voters. The event will be held at Chesapeake Bay Environmental Center’s new “green” education building in Grasonville at 6 p.m. and is open to the general public.

Viniar began her career in the field of community college education at Rockland Community College in New York, serving there for 17 years and becoming the vice president for institutional advancement before becoming the president of Berkshire Community College in Massachusetts. She came to Chesapeake College from Cornell University, where she served as executive director of the Institute for Community College Development.

With baccalaureate and master’s degrees in English literature from New York City University and a doctorate in education and leadership studies from Farleigh Dickinson University, Viniar has taught English composition and literature, women’s studies, and leadership courses.

Upon the announcement of her appointment in July 2008, Chesapeake College Trustee James Maffitt stated, “We were impressed by the depth of her experience as a community college president, and her sense that the community college today must be looked at as both a place of higher education and as a place where you apply business principles.”

Viniar is the fifth president of Chesapeake College and succeeds Dr. Stuart Bounds in this position.

In her inaugural speech Viniar acknowledged her role as a woman and leader: “”Women college presidents, or for that matter, women lawyers, doctors, business leaders, athletes or politicians, were few and far between when I was growing up. . . Many things have changed since then, not the least of which is the fact that there are women role models in every sphere of life.” She pledged to focus on three goals of sustainability: environmental stewardship, economic development and social justice.

Though she began her presidency during a time of economic decline, Viniar is committed to maintaining the college’s services and providing affordable education. She has taken great strides to reach out to the business community to demonstrate her commitment to workforce training.

In her keynote talk Viniar will reflect upon the future of community college education, the current economic and political climate, and her role in the community.

The QAC League of Women Voters is a nonpartisan political organization committed to encouraging the active and informed participation of citizens in government. Membership is open to individuals, male and female, who are of voting age. Since 2003 the League has been offering programs and activities based on an appreciation that an informed citizenry is the cornerstone of a strong democracy.

The public is invited to attend the annual dinner and lecture. For additional information, contact the QAC League of Women Voters at 410-490-0361 or email pres@qa.lwvmd.org.

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