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EFSC President Praised as Visionary, Contract Extended

Dr. James Richey walks with two students on campus

February 05, 2024

The Eastern Florida State College Board of Trustees has extended the contract of College President Dr. Jim Richey to 2029, citing his exceptional performance and visionary leadership of the college.

The unanimous action by the five-member board took place Monday during Richey’s performance review for 2023, the latest since he became president in 2012.

Board Chair Ron Howse said one of Richey’s greatest strengths is listening to the community and businesses, and creating new programs that help individuals, companies and the local economy.

“Because of that we now have nursing programs, flight maintenance programs and more. It’s just incredible. All these people are hired as soon as they graduate. That’s what it’s all about. All I can say is outstanding job,” said Howse.

Dr. Jim Richey in suit with tie
Dr. Jim Richey, EFSC President

Other trustees echoed that, saying Richey is indispensable to EFSC’s future.

“President Richey has provided outstanding leadership of the college to meet the needs of our students and community. The improvements he has made in curriculum and facilities is nothing short of amazing,” said Trustee Bruce Deardoff.

Trustee Winston Scott called Richey’s performance “outstanding in all respects. EFSC has continued to grow in enrollment, academic offerings, diversity, financial status, public awareness and by every other metric.”

Said Trustee Laura Moody: “President Richey has set the bar high for excellence in all areas at EFSC. From the moment he took the position, he has had incredible vision for the needs of business, government and the community of Brevard County. We are truly fortunate to call him EFSC’s leader.”

Trustee Dr. Edgar Figueroa summed up his evaluation in calling Richey “exceptional, genuine and irreplaceable.”

Richey thanked the trustees for their support and said he is committed to ensuring EFSC remains on the cutting edge of new initiatives.

“I am highly motived to keep this college moving forward for many years to come. The college is special, not just because we have a great team of professionals but because we have students who want to earn an education that will be highly impactful for their careers,” he said.

“The best part of this job is watching them graduate to the next exciting phase of their lives. It is my great joy to play a role in making that happen.”

EFSC Accomplishments 2023

Richey’s review included a 50-page report detailing the college’s accomplishments in 2023.

Among the highlights:

  • A decade of collegiate excellence since EFSC became a state college in 2013, launching nearly 50 new programs and making major investments to modernize all four EFSC campuses.
  • New facilities for aerospace education and student housing were opened while two major new projects for technology buildings were started.
  • A major milestone was achieved in the College’s reaccreditation process with a highly positive report from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC), setting the stage for final reaccreditation approval in 2024.
  • Tuition was not raised for the 12th straight year, and a record $1 million in student scholarships were awarded.
  • Strong marketing efforts increased the college’s enrollment to levels that exceed pre-pandemic levels, and a dynamic new EFSC website was launched.
  • The College was named among the top 150 community colleges in the nation by the Aspen Institute and is in the running for its award as the best in the U.S.

The Board of Trustees will next meet in April when the college plans to break ground on a new $20 million Center for Innovative Technology Education (CITE) on the Melbourne Campus that will set a regional standard for high tech education.

For more information about Eastern Florida State College, its programs, and corporate services, visit easternflorida.edu or call 321-632-1111.

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