[UPDATE] TCC Names New President

By: Stephanie Salvatore Email
By: Stephanie Salvatore Email

***UPDATE 10-18-2010 8:50 PM by Stephanie Salvatore

Although he's not a new face to Tallahassee Community College, Jim Murdaugh is stepping into a position that is very new to him. Chosen as the 8th president of the school, he beat out dozens of candidates from across the nation and various backgrounds.

After Thomas Keegan withdrew his name, the field was narrowed down to the top two, both from our area. Members spoke to the room about which candidate they felt would be best for the job, but made clear that either candidate was a winning choice.

"I think all of us knew he was a very strong candidate. He's done such wonderful work at this college that it was only a matter of whether or not he can take it to the next level and if he could convince the community and the trustees that he could do that because what he's done so far has been flawless," says interim president Barbara Sloan.

"We had two great candidates, two great candidates, it could have gone either way, and I'm pleased that we - the job is done and I know that Jim would do a very good job," says board chair Eugene Lamb.

Murdaugh says he was humbled when he first received the phone call offering him the position and says he is ready to get down to business.

"They are very big shoes to fill. I worked for two presidents, Dr. Wetherell and Dr. Law, both of them were outstanding presidents and I believe it's my obligation to pick the ball up and move it forward and I'm up for the task."

The board hopes to have Murdaugh contracted as soon as possible and in his office and ready go by January.

*** UPDATE 10-18-2010 5:45 PM ***
Tallahassee, FL (TCC Press Release) - Tallahassee Community College’s District Board of Trustees, on Monday, selected Dr. Jim Murdaugh to be the College’s eighth president.

In assuming the presidency, assistant vice president Murdaugh will leave his position at the College’s Gadsden County-based Florida Public Safety Institute/Pat Thomas Law Enforcement Academy, a post he has held since 1999.

Murdaugh has also served as the College’s point person in Gadsden County for grants, programs and services and assists the Gadsden County Schools, governmental entities, civic groups and others on behalf of TCC.

Prior to his hiring at TCC in 1999, Murdaugh spent 12 years (1988-99) at the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. During that time, he served in a number of increasingly responsible leadership roles culminating as a member of the agency’s Executive Council as Administrator of the Office of Human Resources.

From 1984-88, he worked in the Florida Attorney General’s Office, where he served as Bureau Chief of the statewide Help Stop Crime! Program.

Murdaugh’s distinguished career in law enforcement also includes stints with the Fort Walton Beach Police Department (1983-84), the Leon County Sheriff’s Office (1977-83) and the Florida Bureau of Criminal Justice Planning and Assistance (1976-77).

Murdaugh also served a total of 30 years in the United States Air Force Reserve (1974-2004), retiring as a Lieutenant Colonel. His service included active duty for both Gulf Wars and, in the aftermath of the September 11 attacks, he was called to extended active duty, serving as Commander of the 96th Security Forces Squadron and Chief of Security Forces at Eglin Air Force Base.

Murdaugh received three degrees from Florida State University – a bachelor of science and master’s of science in criminology and a Ph.D. in public administration.

Murdaugh, who is slated to begin his presidency on January 1, 2011, will take over for Dr. Barbara Sloan, who has served as president since May 1. Sloan replaced Dr. Bill Law, now the president at St. Petersburg College.


Updated 10/18 3:26pm:

Jim Murdaugh is the new president of Tallahassee Community College. Watch Eyewitness News for more information.


TCC's search for a new president is winding down as the first of five finalists comes in for an interview.

The candidates will be meeting with faculty and students over the course of two days on the main campus, and also visiting the different campuses in Gadsden and Wakulla counties.

Interim president Barbara Sloan says while they're interviewing the candidates, the candidates are also interviewing them.

"We know we have 5 people who are very well qualified so now what we want to do is make sure that we have the person who has the right vision and the right approach for our college. The best way to find that out is to expose them to as much of the campus as we can and to give as much of the campus community as possible a chance to visit with them," says Sloan.

The board of trustees will meet and make their decision on the new president on October 18. For a list of the rest of the schedule, click on the link below.

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