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Champion of higher education stepping down

Danville Community College President Dr. B. Carlyle Ramsey has announced plans to retire from his position next summer. 

Ramsey, who has served as president for more than two decades, made the announcement recently during the annual joint meeting of the DCC Board and the Educational Foundation Board. 

Ramsey, who said he would retire effective August 1, 2013, leaves the college at an all-time high, as it was also announced that the first major gifts campaign had surpassed its fundraising goal of $7 million.

“I have had the pleasure and privilege of serving as Danville Community College’s president and as dean of instruction and student development. To serve in both capacities has been the most rewarding experience of my professional career,” Ramsey said. “Now, it is time for a new leader to assume the presidency of this outstanding institution.”

Amid a celebration that included balloons and seven cakes that were adorned with dollar amounts representing the total of $7.12 million raised. Reaching that milestone was a dream early on for Ramsey.

 “The Educational Foundation is celebrating 30 years of extraordinary service to the college and the region,” Ramsey noted. “I am confident the next president will find the college and community prepared to respond to future campaign initiatives.”

A native of Halifax County, Ramsey was appointed the fourth president of the College on March 1, 1992. Previously, Ramsey served as DCC’s dean of instruction and student development from 1987-1988. He also worked in the Virginia Community College System Office in Richmond as assistant vice chancellor from 1989-1992. 

Prior to that, he served as vice president of academic affairs at Union College (KY) from 1984-1987 and as assistant academic dean and division chair at South Georgia College from 1973-1984. 

He received his B.A. degree in history from the University of Florida, and both his M.S. and Ph.D. in history from Florida State University. 

Ramsey maintains he is passionate about DCC and the larger community college movement, noting that community colleges are “the most egalitarian institutions in the 21st century America — epitomizing and advancing the Jeffersonian ideal.”  

Among his accomplishments as president are a focus on federal compliance issues and successful reaffirmation by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS); expansion of Science, Technology, engineering and mathematics programs (STEM) which are critical to the future of the entire region; a major gifts campaign focused on scholarships, student success, faculty-staff development and workforce/economic development.

“DCC is in good shape and has an entrepreneurial focus,” Ramsey said. 

In retirement Ramsey says he is looking forward to continue teaching and spending time with his family, including a 7-year-old granddaughter.