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Newton named new president of Glen Oaks Community College

By Robert Tomlinson
News Director

CENTREVILLE Dr. Bryan Newton has been officially named as the ninth president of Glen Oaks Community College.

In a press release Friday, the college announced that Newton, who previously served as the vice president for enrollment management and student services at Wor-Wic Community College in Salisbury, Md., would succeed the retiring Dr. David Devier as president of the college.

Newton’s contract as president is for three years, and he will take residence at the college’s Nora Hagen House. He will be on campus beginning July 22.

“The caliber of candidates was outstanding, and the search process went exceedingly well,” Bruce Gosling, chairman of the GOCC Board of Trustees, said in a statement. “We are delighted that Dr. Newton has accepted our offer, and we are ready to get to work.”

Newton holds a Ph.D. in Education and Human Resource Studies from Colorado State University, a Juris Doctorate from The Ohio State University College of Law, and a Bachelor’s degree in History from Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville. Previously, he was a vice president for enrollment management and student services at Aiken Technical College in Graniteville, S.C., and was Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs at Ivy Tech Community College in Bloomington, Ind.

According to the college, Newton has also been an active participant in various professional and community organizations, including his recent service as chair of the Maryland Chief Student Affairs Officers Group and his ongoing involvement with the American Association of Community Colleges. Locally, he is known for his leadership roles in community service, including his work with the United Way of the Lower Eastern Shore and Shore Leadership.

“I am honored and humbled to be chosen as the next president of Glen Oaks Community College,” Newton said in a statement. “I plan to build on the excellent work of Dr. Devier and work together with Glen Oaks Community College employees and our students to continue the tradition of excellence they have established. The college plays a vital role in the educational and economic development of St. Joseph’s County, and I look forward to working with business and industry, government officials, secondary institutions, and other partners to continue to grow the college and the region.”

The announcement of Newton as president comes after a months-long search that included a number of public forums, including one held with Newton back on April 23. The college also considered Dr. Vernon Smith and Dr. Katherine Zatz for the position.

during the public forum he wanted to be the next president because he’s faced plenty of challenges and has the experience to be an effective president.

“While each day is different, I think I’ve faced many of the problems and challenges that I would face as president. I served in a number of different areas, so I think that’s helpful to me, having experience in student affairs and enrollment management, which is critically important, but also having experience in human resources, having experience in fundraising, which is so much of a president’s job in this day and age,” Newton said.

Newton said the biggest challenge the college will be facing is determining where enrollment is coming from, as well as the long-term health of enrollment management.

“I think that’s something you have to get into, you really have to work towards, you really have to have an enrollment management plan, you have to look at the data, the data has to tell you exactly where you need to go with enrollment,” Newton said. “I think that’s the biggest challenge for this community college as well as all community colleges across the country.”

Later, Newton said that building relationships is “vital” for any president to succeed, especially building relationships with the community and with faculty and staff.

“I’m going to be out and about, having conversations with business and industry, K-12 leaders, government officials, etc., and I’ll be doing a lot of listening in the first six months and a year, figuring out exactly what the community needs from us,” Newton said. “Internally, I think you have to build trust with faculty and staff to be successful. You have to be transparent in what you’re doing, and that’s a hallmark of my leadership philosophy, making sure you share decision making with the college campus as a whole; it’s vitally important.”

With that, Newton mentioned it was important to support the support staff and administrators as well, saying that at the end of the day, they’re all focused on student services.

“I try not to get into units pitting units against others, and I know the faculty are different than administration who’s different than staff, and the reality is we’re all one college, and we’re all focused on student success, and that’s what’s vitally important. … We have to be supportive of everybody and be supportive of each other,” Newton said. “One of the things that goes back to my leadership is making sure that people are able to grow in whatever way they see fit. For many people in my division, they are happy in their jobs, but they want to grow in their jobs, too. Making sure we have leadership development and professional development is important to them.”

He also mentioned his leadership style as “authentic” and “not trying to hide the ball and play games” with people. He also mentioned having compassion as well, noting that people are “humans before you’re employees.” At the end, Newton said that making a presidential choice is “critical,” that “leadership does matter,” and that the college needs to make sure the personality “works for the community.”

Newton had received six of seven first-place votes in a ballot conducted by the Board of Trustees during deliberations April 25.

Newton will be replacing Devier, who announced last year he would retire at the end of the 2023-24 academic year. Devier had been the president of the college since 2014.

Robert Tomlinson can be reached at 279-7488 or

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