HCC-Northwest leader Zachary Hodges named finalist for AACC CEO award

HCC-Northwest leader Zachary Hodges named finalist for AACC CEO award Main Photo

28 Feb 2024

By: Katy Times

Zachary Hodges, Ed.D., president of Houston Community College (HCC) Northwest College has been named a finalist for chief executive officer of the year award from the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC), the college announced in a February 15th press release.

Hodges, who has led his college for 28 years, said he is honored to be among the group of presidents and chancellors selected as finalists by the AACC, the leading advocacy organization for community college institutions.

Northwest College is one of six colleges that make up the HCC District, with campuses serving the Alief, Katy and Spring Branch communities as well as some areas within the Houston Independent School District.

“I credit the great team around me,” Hodges said, adding that he “surrounds himself with talented people while promoting an open and transparent environment where they can thrive and grow while serving our students.”

Hodges has implemented many student success initiatives, including an HCC-University of Texas Tyler engineering program partnership, a Chevron Texas A&M University Engineering Academy at HCC and the HCC-University of Houston Engineering Academy. Such pathway programs ensure community college students complete their four-year degrees on time and with no extra courses taken.

Under Hodges’ leadership, a campus was built in Katy, Tex., and opened 18 months ago to support student success at all levels. Already, enrollment has exceeded expectations with students thriving in state-of-the-art spaces and open labs.

Chancellor Margaret Ford Fisher, Ed.D., said Hodges has been highly successful in building relationships internally and externally to help HCC in its mission. “It is no surprise to anyone that Dr. Hodges’ servant-leadership and passion for empowering our students to succeed are being recognized by the AACC,” she said.

Hodges began at HCC in 1976 as its first campus-based counselor, bringing with him credentials as a licensed marriage and family therapist and counselor. He holds a doctorate and master’s and bachelor’s degrees from Texas A&M University at Commerce.

Other leaders nominated for the award include:

· Dr. Paul Carlsen, Lakeshore Technical College in Wisconsin

· Dr. Dorey Diab, North Central State College in Ohio

· Dr. Jim Murdaugh, Tallahassee Community College in Florida

· Dr. Phillip Neal, Southcentral Kentucky Community and Technical College

· Dr. Christopher Reber, Hudson County Community College in New Jersey

A winner will be announced at the AACC’s annual conference in Louisville, Ky., this April.

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