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BridgeValley board

Casey Sacks (back center) speaks to the BridgeValley Community and Technical College board of governors. Sacks, who had served as the school’s interim president since June, was named BridgeValley president Monday.

BridgeValley board

Casey Sacks, the interim president of BridgeValley Community and Technical College, can now remove “interim” from her title.

In a voice vote with no dissent heard, the college’s Board of Governors voted Monday to name her the president. The vote came after board members spent about two-and-a-half hours behind closed doors.

The West Virginia Community and Technical College System’s board must still approve her contract. It will mirror her current contract’s terms and compensation, which that board previously approved.

The BridgeValley board had appointed Sacks as interim in June, on the same day it fired former president Eunice Bellinger. Board members launched a presidential search but ended up sticking with Sacks.

“We think you’ve done a phenomenal job,” board Chairwoman Ashley Deem told Sacks after the vote. “The board could not be happier and we are looking forward to the next phase of BridgeValley.”

“I really appreciate your faith in me,” Sacks told the board.

Sacks has twice been vice chancellor of the West Virginia Community and Technical College System, which oversees community colleges statewide. Her first stint was from 2016-18, and her second was from January until becoming BridgeValley’s interim president.

In between, she was deputy assistant secretary for community colleges at the U.S. Education Department, according to that department’s website.

“She provide[d] leadership for initiatives supporting career and technical education, adult education, correctional and re-entry education and community colleges,” her U.S. Education Department bio said. “These initiatives collectively serve over 25 million students each year.”

Board member Mark Blankenship thanked the presidential search committee members and said “we had three great candidates to consider, at the end of the day.”

The other two finalists were Camille Reese, vice president for instruction at North Carolina’s Mitchell Community College, and Phil Klein, vice president of economic and workforce development at West Virginia Northern Community College.

Ryan Quinn covers education. He can be reached at 304-348-1254 or Follow @RyanEQuinn on Twitter.

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