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PRESS RELEASE

January 24, 2008

Tom Butler
(850) 245-0413

Education Commissioner Announces Will Holcombe as Community Colleges Chancellor

TALLAHASSEE – Education Commissioner Eric J. Smith today announced Dr. Will Holcombe as the Florida Community Colleges Chancellor. Dr. Holcombe has served as Interim Chancellor of the Florida Department of Education’s Division of Community Colleges since October 2007.

“The competitive nature of today’s global economy underscores the importance of pursuing postsecondary education. We must help our students see themselves as college bound and prepare them well for higher education,” said Commissioner Smith. “Dr. Holcombe has long been an advocate for a seamless education system that not only produces successful students, but also a skilled workforce. Florida is fortunate to have such a well-respected and seasoned leader at the helm of our nationally-recognized community college system.”

Holcombe has more than 30 years of experience in educational leadership and collegiate administration. A former U.S. Marine Corps Captain, Holcombe began his teaching career at Ford Junior High School in Brook Park, Ohio. He later joined Florida's Community College System, serving as an English professor at Santa Fe Community College and Broward Community College.

For nearly two decades, Holcombe served as President of Broward Community College (from January 1987 to February 2004; Interim President from November 2006 to July 2007). He has also served as Vice President of Brevard Community College, provost and academic dean for Broward Community College's Central Campus and assistant to the President for Broward Community College.

“Postsecondary educational opportunity is the key to the economic future of Florida,” said Chancellor Holcombe. “I am honored that Commissioner Smith wants me to continue to work with our outstanding community college system. His vision and enthusiasm are exciting to our college presidents, to our division and to the other chancellors. I am happy to be on the team.”

Holcombe completed his undergraduate studies at Baldwin-Wallace College in Ohio. He earned both his master’s degree in education and doctorate in college administration from the University of Florida.