Crocker Named New MCC Vice President

(Bradenton, Fla., Nov. 21, 2008) - Dr. W. Jack Crocker has been named vice president of academic quality and success at Manatee Community College (MCC), announced MCC President Dr. Lars A. Hafner.

Crocker most recently was at Florida Gulf Coast University (FGCU), Ft. Myers, Fla., where he served in several administrative positions including interim provost and vice president of academic affairs. He and his family will relocate to MCC's district of Manatee and Sarasota counties and he will start his new position in January.

In announcing the decision, Hafner described Crocker's multiple-state experience as valuable and emphasized his extensive background in and knowledge of Florida's higher education system as a strong factor in his selection.

"Dr. Crocker will help MCC achieve gold standard stature, both at the community college and hybrid four-year college levels," Hafner said.

Crocker was selected after the college conducted a national search. As the college's chief academic officer, the new vice president is charged with providing highly effective leadership in the administration, planning, budgeting, evaluating and supporting the instructional credit and noncredit programs, activities and personnel, and assuring measurable success in academic and instructional effectiveness.

In meetings with MCC employees, Crocker said, "I operate on respect for individuals, collaboration and transparency." He named the establishment of a strong interdisciplinary liberal arts program at FGCU the career accomplishment in which he takes the most pride, saying, "I wanted the program to give the basis for critical thinking, and it did."

Crocker began his higher education at a junior college in Mississippi and refers to the community college open door policy as a "noble mission, essential to keep."

"As MCC and a growing number of colleges move toward offering four-year degrees, there is no reason we can't do both really well," he said.

Crocker earned a Ph.D. in English from Texas Tech University, Lubbock, Tex., and a master's in English from Florida State University, Tallahassee, Fla. In his academic career, he has been a classroom instructor, chaired departments and divisions, held several administrative positions, assisted in fundraising and forged institutional and community partnerships.

Crocker is a poet and writer whose works have been widely published. He has a new book of poems, "The Last Resort," published by the Texas Review Press.

Dr. W. Jack Crocker

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