Released: August 4, 2017
Santa Fe Community College President Randy W. Grissom has announced his retirement effective October 31. Grissom has led the college as president since 2013.
“President Grissom’s steadfast and forward-thinking leadership has benefitted our students on multiple levels and in countless ways,” said Linda Siegle, chair of the Santa Fe Community College Governing Board. “He has kept student success at the forefront of every initiative and decision, and it has paid off through a heightened focus on retention and increased graduation rates. He has fostered vital business and industry partnerships and championed innovative entrepreneurial programs that better prepare our students for good-paying jobs.”
“It has been an honor to serve SFCC and our students,” said Grissom. “I appreciate the outstanding support we have received from the Santa Fe community and I am confident that the college will continue to thrive.”
As president, Grissom, 68, has led a unified, campus-wide commitment to increase student success. As a result, the college has almost doubled its graduation rate during his tenure. Grissom has guided work to align curricula with Santa Fe Public Schools to expand access to dual credit courses. He helped forge partnerships with four-year colleges and universities to offer bachelor’s and advanced degree programs at the Santa Fe Higher Education Center, enabling students to remain in Santa Fe while completing their education. He furthered collaboration with businesses, workforce programs and economic development organizations to ensure that the college remain responsive to employer needs and that students have access to job opportunities. The college most recently received generous support from Christus St. Vincent Hospital and Los Alamos National Laboratory, among others.
To provide much-needed resources for students and the college, Grissom has worked to raise financial and community support for the Santa Fe Community College Foundation, significantly increasing the Foundation’s endowment, thereby providing financial aid to more students and additional funding for faculty and staff professional development.
Under Grissom’s leadership, SFCC has received broad recognition and numerous grants, including a $15 million Trade Adjustment Assistance Community College and Career Training award; the 2017 Climate Leadership Award: Preparing the Next Generation of Workforce for Green Jobs from the American Association of Community Colleges; and funding from the Environmental Protection Agency, and the U.S. Economic Development Administration.
Grissom has had a distinguished career at SFCC. Grissom joined the college as a faculty member in 1983, SFCC’s inaugural year. In 1989, he established the New Mexico Small Business Development Center Network. Grissom then departed the college to work in management positions in private industry. Grissom returned to the college in 2003 as Chief Financial Officer and Vice President for Administrative Services. He then moved back to the private sector, with roles in the technology, agriculture and hospitality fields. In 2008, Grissom returned to SFCC to serve as Dean of Economic and Workforce Development and Director of the Sustainable Technologies Center, where he launched the green technology and workforce programs. He spearheaded the creation of the college’s biofuels, solar technology, green building, and algae production programs. In 2013, he was named Vice President for Academic Affairs. The college’s Governing Board appointed him Acting President in November 2013, and President in September 2014.
Grissom holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Business from Texas Christian University in Fort Worth, Texas. He is married to Frank Renz, a consultant to community colleges.
The SFCC Governing Board will announce the process for selecting an interim president in the near future.
For more than 35 years, Santa Fe Community College has been the gateway to success for individuals and the community by providing affordable, high quality educational programs that serve the social, cultural, technological, and economic needs of a diverse community. SFCC is a designated Best for Vets and Military Friendly school. The college serves more than 12,000 students per year in its credit, noncredit and adult programs. For further information, visit sfcc.edu or call 505-428-1000. Follow us: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn.