Board Chairs

Unique Responsibilities of the Board Chair

Board Chair



The board chair's special roles and duties

As the chair of a community college board of trustees, you are endowed with specific responsibilities and powers that distinguish it from other board members. 

Here are the primary responsibilities of a community college board chair, listed in order of relative importance and significance to the work of the board and the wellbeing of the college:

  1. Leadership and Strategic Planning:
    • Provide effective leadership to the board by setting a clear vision and direction for the college.
    • Facilitate the development and implementation of the college's strategic plans and goals.
    • Guide the board in aligning institutional priorities with the college's mission and vision.
  2. Board Governance and Operations:
    • Ensure that the board functions efficiently and effectively, adhering to established bylaws and policies.
    • Facilitate the orientation and onboarding of new board members.
    • Foster a culture of trust, collaboration, and open communication among board members.
  3. Board Meeting Facilitation:
    • Preside over board meetings, ensuring that they are conducted in an orderly and productive manner.
    • Collaborate with the college president and board secretary to set meeting agendas.
    • Encourage active participation and engagement from all board members during meetings.
  4. Relationship with the College President:
    • Establish a strong working relationship with the college president, built on trust and mutual respect.
    • Collaborate with the president in setting institutional priorities and strategies.
    • Provide support and constructive feedback to the president, while respecting the college's administrative autonomy.
  5. External Relations and Advocacy:
    • Represent the college and advocate for its interests in the community, with stakeholders, and at public events.
    • Develop and maintain relationships with local government officials, community leaders, and funding agencies.
    • Serve as a spokesperson for the college, effectively communicating its mission, achievements, and challenges.
  6. Board Member Development and Engagement:
    • Promote the professional development of board members by encouraging training and educational opportunities.
    • Foster a culture of continuous learning and growth among board members.
    • Encourage active participation and engagement from all board members in committee work and college initiatives.
  7. Ethics and Compliance:
    • Ensure that the board operates ethically and in compliance with relevant laws, regulations, and policies.
    • Uphold high standards of integrity, transparency, and accountability within the board and the college.
    • Monitor and address any potential conflicts of interest or ethical concerns that may arise.

It's important to note that while the chair has distinct responsibilities, effective board leadership relies on collaboration and collective decision-making. The chair's role is to facilitate the board's work, promote unity, and create an environment conducive to productive discussions and decision making. Prioritizing these responsibilities will contribute to the overall success and wellbeing of the college.