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It’s down to three finalists for Harford Community College’s next president, two of whom have worked at community colleges in Maryland.

Dawn Lindsay, Danette Toone and Frederico J. “F. J.” Talley were selected by the Presidential Search Committee out of 52 candidates who applied for the position.

Of the three candidates, Lindsay has experience as a professor in Maryland community colleges and Talley serves as dean of a community college in southern Maryland.

Lindsay is the interim president at Glendale Community College in California, Toone is the vice president of academic and community initiatives at Temple College in Texas and Talley as the dean of the College of Southern Maryland Leonardtown Campus.

"We have three highly qualified candidates,” board member Jay Valdes, who chaired the 12-member search committee, which includes college and community representatives, said at Tuesday’s HCC Board of Trustees meeting.

Each of the three finalists will spend a full day at HCC and will participate in a campus town hall forum, as well as have dinner with the board of trustees.

Lindsay will visit the campus on March 8, Toone on March 10 and Talley on March 11.

All candidate forums will be held at 2:30 p.m. in the Chesapeake Center Board Room at the college. The public is invited to attend.

Following President James LaCalle’s retirement announcement in August, the board of trustees entered into a $30,000 contract with Association of Community College Trustees to conduct a national presidential search and then convened the search committee to review resumes and present finalists.

LaCalle, 65, was an HCC employee for more than 40 years before being appointed president in 2005.

The original pool of 52 candidates was narrowed by the search committee to 10 candidates, who were interviewed by phone.

Those 10 were narrowed to six candidates, who met face-to-face with the committee. The six candidates spoke without notes to the committee for 10 minutes and then answered questions.

The committee then selected its three finalists.

The Board of Trustees plans to make its final selection in March with the expectation the new president will take over July 1 when LaCalle’s contract expires. The next president’s contract will be negotiated before he or she takes office. LaCalle earns $175,641 a year.

Minimum qualifications, the board’s expectations and a list of 12 ideal characteristics the board hopes to find in a candidate are all listed on the college’s Web site.

The three finalists

Lindsay began serving at Glendale College in January 2007 as the vice president of instruction, and was promoted to executive vice president in January 2009. She serves as the interim superintendent/president.

Lindsay, who grew up in Harford County and is a graduate of Perry Hall High School, has experience as a professor at community colleges in Maryland and California.

When Lindsay arrived at Glendale College, she developed an Enrollment Management Committee to address declining enrollment, according to a press release from HCC.

She was also the first keynote speaker for the Glendale Character and Ethics Project and has been named the 2010 Glendale Woman of the Year.
Lindsay earned a doctorate in organizational leadership from Pepperdine University, a master’s degree in educational counseling and bachelor’s degrees in psychology and in social work from Western Maryland College.

Toone is the vice president of academic and community initiatives at Temple College, a community college in Temple, Texas, where she has been an employee since 1998.

Prior to serving in her current capacity at Temple, Toone has served as the associate vice president of advancement, business and community service and as interim director of admissions and records.

Toone was able to secure grant funding in excess of $9 million, which enabled Temple to be selected to participate in the Achieving the Dream: Community Colleges Count initiative.

The grant money, in conjunction with collaborative planning, also allowed for the expansion of campus-wide technology enabling enhanced opportunities for student success, according to HCC’s press release.

Toone has a doctorate in education in the community college leadership program from the University of Texas at Austin, a master’s in business administration in finance from the University of Texas of the Permian Basin in Odessa, Texas, and a bachelor’s in business administration from Washburn University in Topeka, Kansas.

Talley is the vice president and dean of the Leonardtown Campus of the College of Southern Maryland.
Talley, a former president of Olivet College in Olivet, Mich., received a bachelor’s degree in English from Dickinson College and a Master of Arts in college student personnel from Bowling Green State University. He also earned a doctorate in student personnel and higher education administration from Ohio University.

Talley is a frequent presenter and author on higher education topics both nationally and internationally, according to HCC’s press release.

Talley has given a presentation at the American Council on Education on balancing faculty work and composition with the future needs of universities and a consultation on working with student leaders at the University of Zululand in South Africa.

In addition, Talley has served on the Economic Development Council and the Community Development Corporation Board of Directors in St. Mary’s County.

He also served as a board member of the Historic St. Mary’s City Foundation and as a member of the Greenwell Foundation Board.

For more information on HCC’s presidential search, visit or

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