HomeCommunity NewsGCC Board Names Superintendent/President

GCC Board Names Superintendent/President

First published in the April 9 print issue of the Glendale News Press.

The Glendale Community College Board of Trustees recently named Ryan Cornner the district’s next superintendent and president, after conducting a five-month search to replace the retiring David Viar.
Cornner currently serves as vice chancellor of educational programs and institutional effectiveness for the nine-college Los Angeles Community College District, or LACCD, the largest community college district in the country.
A native of Southern California, Cornner began his career in social work in the early 2000s, driven by what he calls a desire for social justice and a commitment to improve the lives of individuals, families and the community.
“I am humbled and honored to be chosen to lead this institution,” Cornner said. “I was well aware of GCC’s proud tradition of excellence and service to the community before I began this process, and my respect has grown even deeper as I interacted with so many impressive people who I now get to call colleagues.
“My core leadership philosophy focuses on building a sense of shared community and values, which is essential to building an institutional culture that promotes collegiality, inclusion, innovation and success. I look forward to engaging leaders throughout the college, as we work together to build on the college’s tradition and set the standard for excellence in meeting student needs,” he added.
While teaching as an adjunct instructor at a community college, Cornner said he was immediately drawn to the community-college system and appreciated the connection with the college mission and the values that drew him to social work.
“I was able to witness the individual impact on students in the classroom and recognize the broader impact of the institution,” Cornner said in a statement.
“It was clear that community colleges are the best means to combat generational poverty and to have a socioeconomic impact on the community. So, I shifted to a career focused on improving the lives of students and creating institutional change to best serve the needs of the community.”
Cornner earned his doctorate degree in education and master’s degree in social work at the University of Southern California. He also holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology from UC, San Diego.
Cornner’s journey through academia has included more than 12 years teaching in the community college and university systems and more than a decade of administrative experience, where the GCC’s board said he demonstrated an ability to work closely with campus constituents to implement programs and processes with a commitment to setting goals and deploying strategies to achieve them.
While serving as dean of institutional effectiveness at East Los Angeles College, Cornner led the college’s efforts to develop a strategic, educational, facilities and technology master plan.
During his role as associate vice president of strategic planning and innovation at Pasadena City College, he collaborated closely with faculty and staff to design an integrated planning and resource allocation process.
During the past six years at LACCD, Cornner has worked on several initiatives to increase student access to college and ensure their success, including community partnerships to develop the L.A. College Promise Program for free tuition, dual enrollment agreements with several school districts including L.A. and Burbank unified school districts, and multiple student-centered programs to address enrollment, completion rates, student basic needs and accreditation.
Most recently, during the pandemic, he oversaw the creation of a recovery plan for the safe return to in-person classes.
“Dr. Cornner was a remarkable candidate who demonstrated a deep understanding of the challenges facing community colleges with a proven record at both the campus and multi-district level,” said GCC Board President Armine Hacopian.
“Even more inspiring was his commitment to ensuring all people have equitable access to education and his willingness to work with others to set and achieve the goals that are the foundation of the community-college system.”
The trustees are scheduled to approve Cornner’s contract during their next board meeting scheduled for Tuesday, April 19. He will assume the new duties on July 1.

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