Rockland Community College Board of Trustees to Appoint Officer in Charge at June 27th Board Meeting as National Search Begins for Next President

In addition, Honors Program Chair to Serve as Officer in Charge of Academic Affairs  

SUFFERN, N.Y., June 16, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Rockland Community College’s Board of Trustees will vote to appoint Dr. Susan Deer as Officer in Charge at its June 27th Board meeting as the College begins the search for its 8th President. Dr. Deer has served in a leadership capacity in higher education for more than 35 years and has a long history with the College having been hired in 2008 as Dean of Instruction. She has served as Provost since 2013 and was given the additional title of Executive Vice President in 2016. In recognition of her leadership, Dr. Deer was awarded the Catalyst Leadership Award by the American Council of Education as the New York State outstanding woman leader in higher education in 2016. 

The Board of Trustees of Rockland Community College (RCC) will also vote to appoint Dr. Katherine Lynch as Officer in Charge of Academic Affairs at the June 27th meeting. Dr. Lynch will report to Dr. Deer in her new position and will serve on the Executive Cabinet, the College’s senior leadership team. In this role, Dr. Lynch will provide administrative leadership and direction for all academic activities and faculty affairs at RCC. Dr. Lynch is an Associate Professor of English at Rockland Community College where she also serves as the Chair of the nationally recognized Sam Draper Honors Program. She was awarded the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Teaching in 2020 and has led RCC’s efforts to design and implement a new, mandatory college success course that empowers students to identify their goals early to ensure a more successful college experience. 

It is anticipated that both Dr. Deer and Dr. Lynch will begin their new roles on July 1 and will serve until a successor to current RCC President Dr. Michael Baston is selected and assumes office, which is expected to occur on or before July 2023. The two appointees not only share a wealth of experience within RCC but also a deep commitment to the important role that community colleges play for individuals seeking to improve their lives, as well as a clear understanding of Rockland Community College’s special place within Rockland County. 

"Dr. Deer has had an unwavering commitment to the students of RCC over the past 14 years. The Board of Trustees has full confidence in her ability to lead the College with the support of Dr. Lynch and the entire Executive Cabinet. Together, they will ensure a seamless transition to the incoming eighth president of the College," stated Martin Wortendyke, Chair of the Board of Trustees.  

He added, "We are committed to finding a new president for the College who will continue to amplify and expand on the mission and vision of RCC which has been serving the surrounding community for over six decades providing educational opportunities for individuals at all ages and stages of life. The next president will continue to carry forward the work we have always done in serving our diverse community."  

The Board of Trustees will announce a search committee and the appointment of a search firm in the coming weeks. Updates throughout the search process can be found at this page on the RCC website:  

About Rockland Community College, State University of New York  

Rockland Community College (RCC), located in Suffern New York, provides purpose driven educational opportunities in a supportive, affordable, and accessible environment, empowering individuals to positively transform themselves and their communities. RCC welcomes students from diverse backgrounds who appreciate small class sizes and personal attention from a distinguished, award-winning faculty that includes Fulbright scholars and SUNY Distinguished Professors. Many graduates go on to top universities to further their education on their own or through RCC’s institutional collaborations. 

RCC fosters an environment that attracts, recruits, supports, and retains faculty, staff, and students who value diversity. The College promotes a collegial and inclusive environment by recognizing, promoting, embracing, respecting and celebrating the expansive range and dimensions of cultures, attitudes, ideas and viewpoints contained within our campus community. 

RCC is also proud to provide career training and professional development to adult learners looking to change careers or upgrade their skills through a variety of programs and educational opportunities including workforce training, certifications, and micro credentials. Many of the programs are developed with employers in the community in high demand industry areas to enable graduates to move into a new career upon graduation. More information can be found at

Media Contact:  Risa B. Hoag, GMG Public Relations, 845-627-3000,

SOURCE Rockland Community College