Metropolitan Community College-Kansas City names a new chancellor

Kimberly Beatty
Kimberly Beatty MCC-KC

Metropolitan Community College-Kansas City has a new chancellor.

The MCC Board of Trustees on Wednesday named Kimberly Beatty the eighth chancellor of the institution. Beatty, now serving as vice chancellor for instructional services and chief academic officer at Houston Community College, will replace Mark James, who will retire at the end of the month.

Beatty, the first African-American chancellor for MCC, begins her duties in July.

“We are absolutely thrilled that Dr. Beatty has accepted our invitation to lead MCC at this time of tremendous opportunity and challenge,” Trent Skaggs, president of the MCC Board of Trustees and chairman of the Chancellor Advisory Screening Committee, said in a statement.

Skaggs said the college searched nationally for a new chancellor, beginning in January. The candidate screening committee consisted of trustees, faculty, staff and a student. The search was led by the Massachusetts executive search firm Spelman Johnson.

Beatty was chosen from among 16 candidates. Seven semifinalists were interviewed by MCC officials in April. Last month the board announced that three finalists would visit the Kansas City area and participate in a town hall meeting at each campus: Penn Valley, Maple Woods, Longview, Blue River, and Business & Technology.

“We are confident that Dr. Beatty is the right person at the right time to lead us into the future,” Skaggs said.

Beatty has 28 years of teaching and administrative experience in higher education, including 21 years in leadership roles at community colleges in California, Virginia and Texas. In addition, Beatty has served as a tenured associate professor in English.

“Dr. Beatty is uniquely qualified to lead MCC, having served four of the nation’s best community colleges in such roles as tenured professor, program manager, academic dean, senior student services administrator and chief academic officer,” said Barbara Anne Washington, vice president of the Board of Trustees. “She will serve MCC, the Kansas City region and the state well.”

In a statement about the MCC announcement, Beatty said, “it is a tremendous honor to be entrusted with the leadership of MCC.”

She said the opportunity marks the high point in her career. “Not because it is the highest position, but because I believe the values of MCC and the Board of Trustees align perfectly with mine — and that’s very important to me.”

Beatty is being introduced to the Kansas City community at a reception at Union Station at 5:30 p.m. on June 19.

As chancellor, Beatty is the chief executive officer of the five-campus system and reports to MCC’s six-member governing board.

Metropolitan Community College is Kansas City’s oldest and largest public institution of higher education with and enrollment of roughly 30,000 students a year.

Mará Rose Williams: 816-234-4419, @marawilliamskc