Eastern Gateway Named Finalist for Excellence Program

STUEBENVILLE, Ohio – Eastern Gateway Community College has been named a finalist for the 2105 American Association of Community College’s Exemplary Board/CEO Relations Award of Excellence, the college announced today.

The award is given each year to a community college whose board of trustees and top administrator epitomize the collaboration and working relationship necessary to effectively promote community college governance. This year’s winners will be revealed Monday during the AACC’s Awards of Excellence gala in San Antonio.

Nominees for the Board/CEO award must be committed to professional development opportunities for their board members; annual performance reviews for the president and board; cultivating a positive image for the college; and building a strong economic and social base for the community. They also must advocate for community colleges and their students at a local, state and national level.

Eastern Gateway’s president, Laura Meeks, and its board of trustees were singled out for their shared determination to help students achieve success in the classroom and on the job, as well as a mutual commitment to providing students and staff with a professional, progressive environment in which to thrive, according to the media release.

“The American Association of Community College’s Awards of Excellence program recognizes our nation’s most effective, proactive community colleges,” Meeks said.

“Being named a finalist reflects our board of trustees’ commitment to growing the college in a thoughtful, responsible way and making higher education accessible, equitable and affordable,” she continued. “By working together, we’ve been able to develop new and better ways of delivering services and programs to help our students excel in the classroom and at life, ensuring we graduate a workforce equipped with the skill sets and knowledge required in today’s job market.”

Trustees regularly take part in a variety of activities that promote professional development and education, strengthening the policy making and governance capabilities of individual board members, she said.

Meeks retires in July. The board has selected Jimmie Bruce, vice president of academic success at Northwest Vista College in Texas, to succeed her.

“We will certainly miss Dr. Meeks and her leadership,” John Gilmore, chairman of Eastern Gateway’s board of trustees, said.

“Her enthusiasm and vision for the college’s future guided us through the rough economic times that have plagued higher education across the state and nation, keeping Eastern Gateway on an even keel financially, allowing us to grow our enrollment and expand our service base tenfold through the state-directed expansion into the Mahoning Valley,” he added.

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