COA hires Bagwell as next president

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Jack Bagwell


By Miles Layton
Chowan Herald

Friday, September 20, 2019

College of Albemarle announced its new president Friday – Jack Bagwell.

Bagwell will begin Dec 2 – Dr. Travis Twiford will remain interim President until then.

Bagwell presently serves as the vice president for academic affairs and chief academic officer at Piedmont Technical College in Greenwood, S.C.

“Dr. Bagwell has accepted the offer of the Board of Trustees and today in a special called meeting. We voted unanimously to approve his appointment as the 11th President of the College of the Albemarle,” said Patti Kersey, Chowan County Commissioner appointed to the Board of Trustee’s Search Committee.

For more information, see the Daily Advance and next week's Chowan Herald.

During Bagwell's visit to the COA's Edenton campus in late August, he said he is committed to learning what's needed so as to better understand what can be supported by the institution.

“Comes back to relationships, finding out what you need and want in this community,” Bagwell said to a crowded room filled with local notables. “My commitment to that is that I have done some due diligence, but I can't pretend to understand the depths of the community just reading about it, traveling through, seeing a few signs and being charmed by downtown. I need get into the community and learn what the needs are. I need the college to be active in the community so we can go out and learn what's happening.”

Bagwell noted large turnout of government, civic and business leaders who support the mission of COA's Edenton campus.

“You can evaluate a community by how they adopt, love and interact with the local community college — do they support it; do they want it; do they need it; do they express a desire to have a presence? This community has done that.” he said during his visit to COA's Edenton campus. “I think what we would need to do is evaluate the offerings at every campus and community, look at the support that community has. Clearly there is a lot of interest. There are a lot of people here today. I think it a lot of potential.”

When Bagwell visited the COA's Barco campus, he spoke briefly on the role of a community college president. Getting out in the community and building relationships with industry and businesses, schools and other sectors is part of that role, he said.

“I think the president has to be the chief cheerleader,” he said. “If I didn’t believe in what the college was doing how am I going to tell the good work that everybody is involved in?”