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EFSC President’s Contract Extended After Exceptional Performance

February 07, 2022

The Eastern Florida State College Board of Trustees has extended the contract of college President Dr. Jim Richey to 2027, citing exceptional leadership during the COVID-19 pandemic.

EFSC President Dr. Jim RicheyThe five trustees took the unanimous action Monday during Richey’s annual performance review for 2021, the latest since he became president in early 2012.

Trustees touted his achievements in steering the college through the pandemic and success in other areas, including not raising tuition for the 10th straight year.

They also cited his work the past decade in transforming the college with 86 new academic programs that have produced thousands of graduates now working for local companies.

“Because of his dedication and focus, along with faculty and staff, we have made tremendous improvements to the college. It’s critical that we keep him here,” said Alan Landman, the board’s chair.

Other trustees agreed, with Bruce Deardoff saying “it’s nothing short of amazing how we have raised the level of the college” during Richey’s tenure.

Added Dr. Edgar Figueroa: “I can’t say enough about Dr. Richey. It’s not just the work, but the results.”

Richey thanked the trustees and EFSC’s faculty and staff, saying an unflinching focus on students led to more than 19,000 students enrolled and 3,600 graduating during 2021.

He also said the achievements the past decade were possible “because of the commitment, determination and cooperation by our outstanding faculty, staff and administrators.”

“Going forward, I believe we are the right group of people, and the right organization led by our very able trustees, to meet the challenge of helping our students of today and tomorrow realize their full potential,” said Richey.

“By doing so our local employers and community will thrive and our region of Florida will continue its legacy of greatness. I’m proud to be your college president during this pivotal time.”

The college’s accomplishments in 2021 were detailed in a 24-page report that the trustees cited. The highlights include:

  • Not raising tuition for the 10th straight year, keeping EFSC among the most affordable public colleges in Florida.
  • Nearly 19,400 students were enrolled throughout the Spring, Summer and Fall Terms with 3,659 graduating.
  • The college offered 4,152 in-person classes and 2,202 online classes, giving students digital and on-campus options to learn as the pandemic continued.
  • COVID safety policies included on-campus vaccination events, and strong contact tracing led to an infection rate of less than 1 percent during the peak of the Delta variant.
  • 11,500 students were awarded $8.2 million in emergency federal COVID grants that played an important role in helping them stay in school.
  • Student events such as clubs, plays, concerts and athletic games returned, sparking a revitalization in the collegiate experience.

There were other important accomplishments as well.

  • The college awarded its 2,700th Bachelor’s Degree since the four-year programs were first offered in 2013.
  • The Career Planning and Development Center reached a milestone in helping 75,000 students prepare for the job market.
  • Minority enrollment remained strong, representing 38 percent of EFSC’s total student population.

For more information on Eastern Florida and its programs, visit

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