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President of De Anza College
FootHill-De Anza Community College District in Los Altos Hills, California
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Date Posted May 15, 2020
Executive-President and Chancellor
Employment Type
Application Deadline Open until filled

Initial Review Date: 03/20/20**

**Any complete applications received after the review date will only be forwarded to the hiring committee at their request. 

Position Announcement

The Foothill-De Anza Community College District invites nominations and applications from exceptional leaders for the position of De Anza College president following the retirement of Dr. Brian Murphy after 14 years as president.

Located in Silicon Valley, California, De Anza College serves nearly 30,000 students a year in a dynamic and culturally diverse region. The college’s outstanding transfer and workforce preparation programs draw students from throughout California, the nation and the world. Additionally, the college’s vibrant student life and signature commitment to equity and civic engagement contribute to an environment that fosters high student retention and success rates. 

De Anza seeks a chief executive with a track record demonstrating the knowledge, skills and abilities to lead the college in developing and executing a shared vision for the future. That vision will build upon De Anza’s history as one of the nation’s most innovative community colleges in promoting and advancing educational excellence, equity, social justice and diversity.

A campus assessment and surveys in Fall 2019 identified important attributes and skills the next president must possess to address these important challenges and opportunities:

  • Lead De Anza in rebuilding enrollment through an equity, social justice and diversity lens
  • Participate in the college’s robust shared governance process
  • Exhibit transparency and courage when making difficult decisions
  • Possess intellectual curiosity that challenges the status quo and invites consideration of bold ideas
  • Engage with businesses, foundations, nonprofits, government and individual donors to increase external support and partnerships
  • Be visible and caring both on campus and in the larger community

In summary, the next president of De Anza College will strike that difficult balance between internal and external presence and exercise leadership and technical administrative skills with a high level of emotional intelligence.

To learn more, please visit www.deanza.edu/president-search

The Next President

The president should be a unifying leader who can articulate a clear vision and inspire dedication to achieving the college’s core mission and values; an innovative leader who seeks a long-term career in a dynamic setting; and an empathetic leader who is committed to academic excellence, student equity, and student success.

The next president of De Anza College must:

  • Provide leadership in developing long range planning that will improve enrollment, financial stability, educational programs, student services and technology.
  • Build consensus through consultation, collaboration and team work and an understanding of and commitment to participatory governance and the role faculty, administrators, classified professionals and students in college decision making.
  • Serve as a leader who is highly visible and engaged on campus and in the community; who is accessible, approachable, open minded, honest; and who listens to all faculty, staff, students and community members.
  • Support and continue De Anza’s best practices for high standards in programs and services while embracing a vision that encourages innovation.
  • Work in partnership with local business, industry, nonprofit, government and educational organizations, as well as individual donors, to increase educational opportunities for our students and local communities.
  • Demonstrate experience managing the resources of a college and an understanding of the funding mechanism of the California Community Colleges to guide college resource allocation and student-centered planning.
  • Believe in and be prepared to act to ensure personal and institutional accountability based on data, evaluation and assessment.
  • Be knowledgeable about state and national initiatives such as the Student Equity and Achievement Program, College Promise, Strong Workforce Program, Guided Pathways, Online Education Initiative, and the California Adult Education Program, and how they support the state’s Vision for Success and impact our college.
  • Prioritize college/district values and policies in support of equity, social justice, diversity and academic excellence.
  • Listen openly and take into account the concerns and efforts of faculty, staff and students to lead positive changes and innovation in their areas of expertise for the benefit of students and the betterment of the college.
  • Demonstrate deep commitment to understanding and responding to conditions impacting student life, including advocating for and supporting undocumented students and other marginalized student populations.

Professional Qualifications


  • Understanding of, sensitivity to, and respect for the diverse academic, socio-economic, ethnic, religious and cultural backgrounds, disability, and sexual orientation of community college students, faculty and staff
  • Master’s degree from an accredited institution
  • Minimum of three years of educational leadership at the senior level



An exceptional record of growing, supporting and strengthening an institution through innovation, community partnerships, financial stewardship, and the advancement of shared values, vision, mission to ensure academic quality and student success.


  • Experience successfully managing a complex organization with competing needs and priorities. Expertise in the areas of enrollment management, fiscal management, technology leadership, accreditation processes, participatory governance processes, labor relations, and data-driven decision-making.
  • Demonstrated ability leading strategic planning, coalition and consensus building, cultural competency, communication and transparency, and individual and institutional accountability, as well as creating a positive tone on campus while embracing a diversity of perspectives and opinions.
  • Community college administrative experience, preferably within the California Community Colleges system.
  • Significant and successful experience building local partnerships with business, industry, non-profit, government and other education organizations to advance educational opportunities for students and increase college resources.
  • Significant experience teaching, counseling or providing other direct services to students in a higher education environment.
  • Track record showing deep understanding of, advocating for and implementing student equity.
  • Demonstrated success in fundraising and donor engagement.
  • Demonstrated knowledge of and commitment to the principles of environmental and economic sustainability.


An earned doctorate from an accredited institution of higher learning is preferred.


  • Visionary, innovative, culturally competent and responsive, and effective
  • Respects and demonstrates commitment to equity, social justice and diversity
  • Honors students and respects all aspects of student life
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills and a gift for listening and forging consensus
  • Understands and appreciates the use of technology in teaching and learning
  • Deep emotional intelligence and empathy

Application Process

Application deadline is March 20, 2020 at 11:59 p.m. Position remains open until filled. This is a confidential search process.

You must complete all the required sections of the online application which are denoted with a red asterisk (i.e. Email Registration, Contact Information, Additional Information, Diversity Statement, Required Attachments (e.g. resume and cover letter), and Certify Application (e-signature).  NOTE: To avoid an error message, please type "see attached" in the cover letter section. 

After you submit your application, there is a Voluntary Equal Opportunity Questionnaire. We invite you to complete the optional self-identification fields used for compliance with government regulations and record-keeping guidelines.

Please attach the following two items to your online application:

  • A letter of application that succinctly addresses the background, knowledge and experiences that have prepared you to serve as president of De Anza College as well as the leadership and personal qualities and characteristics that would serve as underpinnings for your service as the next president. (Not to exceed five pages.)
  • A current resume including an email address and cellular telephone number

References: Upon completing your online application, please send an attachment containing the following information to Dr. Fran White at the email address below.

  • A list of references that includes the following (two each):
    • Supervisor
    • Direct administrative reports
    • Faculty members
    • Classified staff members
    • Students
    • External community representative with whom you have worked
  • For each reference, please include cellular and business telephone numbers and email addresses

References will be contacted only for finalists.


Upon hiring, the successful candidate will be required to provide official transcripts.

For CONFIDENTIAL inquiries or further information, contact:

Frances White, Ph.D.

Community College Search Services

(415) 637-4148



EQUAL OPPORTUNITY EMPLOYER STATEMENT:  Foothill-De Anza Community College District is an Equal Opportunity Employer committed to nondiscrimination on the basis of ethnic group identification, race, color, language, accent, immigration status, ancestry, national origin, age, sex/gender, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, marital status, veteran status, medical condition, and physical or mental disability consistent with applicable federal and state laws. Reasonable accommodations will be provided for applicants with disabilities who self-disclose and request accommodation.




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