National Council on Black American Affairs Presents: African American Leadership Institute

Seminar: Preparing for the Next Level: It’s Time to Think Like a Chief Instructional Officer (CIO)

Tuesday and Wednesday, October 20 and 21, 2020, 9:00 am – 4:00 pm

The CCCCIO is excited to partner with the NCBAA on a pre-conference session designed for current Black American community college leaders. This two-day session will be interactive and is designed for members to learn about what it takes to be an effective CIO. Participants will hear from esteemed faculty, administrators and others who can assist them in taking this very important step in their careers. We will discuss the unspoken language of the job and the knowledge base necessary to be successful. We have many different types of colleges in the California system. This means not only are our experiences unique, but the means by which we solve problems are also nuanced. We will also discuss issues dealing with Anti-Blackness, equity and social justice frameworks that are essential to understand how to better serve our students and college communities.

Costs: $500 for two participants and institutional membership to NCBAA or $225 per participant 

More information can be found on the CIO website at 

Conference Resources

Presenter Bios

WRCBAA Institute Co-Chairs

Dr. Tammy Robinson, Vice President, Instruction @ Cañada College, Redwood City, California

Dr. Tammy Robinson serves as the Vice President of Instruction at Cañada College in Redwood City, California. Prior to this position, she served as the Dean of Global Learning Programs and Services and Dean for Social Science and Creative Arts at Skyline College in San Bruno, California.  Dr. Robinson has over twenty years of experience as a community college administrator and faculty member. She also served as interim Vice President of Academic Services Services/Athletic Director/CIO at Lassen Community College in Susanville, California. She was also the Department Chair of English/ESL/Linguistics Department at Los Angeles City College in Los Angeles California. 

Dr. Tammy Robinson holds a Doctorate in Education with an emphasis in Community College Administration from the University of Southern California, a Master of Arts degree in English with an emphasis in Rhetoric and Composition from California State University, Dominguez Hills, a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science from the University of California, Los Angeles and an Associate of Arts degree in Social Science from Cerritos College.

Contact email: [email protected]


Dr. Stacy Thompson, Vice President, Academic Services @ Chabot College, Hayward, California

Dr. Thompson serves as the Vice President of Academic Services at Chabot College in Hayward California. Prior this position she was the Dean of Humanities and Social Sciences at Merritt College. For many years she also served as department chair of Human development and was tenured faculty in the Child Development Department for over 10 years. Dr. Thompson serves on local, regional and national boards including; President of the Western Region Council on Black American Affairs (WRCBAA); Vice President of Programs for National Council on Black American Affairs (NCBAA); and member of the Alumni Board for Lewis and Clark College.

Dr. Thompson holds a Doctorate of Education in Educational Leadership and a Master of Arts Degree in Education from Mills College, Oakland, CA. Master of Arts degree in Early Childhood Education from Mills College in Oakland, CA. She holds a Bachelors Degree in Political Science from Lewis and Clark College in Portland, OR.

Contact email: [email protected]


Presenters and Guests:

Dr. Jennifer Vega La Serna, Vice President of Academic Services @ College of the Sequoias in Visalia, California and President of the CCCCIO Executive Board

Dr. Jennifer Vega La Serna is the Vice President of Academic Services at College of the Sequoias in Visalia, California. She previously served as Dean of Arts and Letters at College of the Sequoias. Dr. Vega La Serna is the President of the California Community College Chief Instructional Officers and a Commissioner for the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges. She recently served on the Board of Directors for the California Community College Athletics Association. She has presented at numerous state and national conferences on topics of accreditation, leadership, mentorship, student athlete academic success, college planning, educational equity and first-year student experiences. Dr. Vega La Serna has written and received numerous grants that support student success including Title V, Pathway to Law School, Basic Skills Student Outcomes and Transformations, and TRiO,

Dr. Vega La Serna holds a Doctorate in Education Policy, Planning, and Administration with a specialization in International and Intercultural Education and a Master’s in Teaching English as a Second Language from the University of Southern California, a Master’s in Education Counseling and Guidance from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, and a Bachelor’s in Liberal Studies from the University of California, Santa Barbara. She is a proud alumna of College of the Sequoias.


Dr. Jennifer Taylor-Mendoza, Vice President, Instruction @ Skyline College, San Bruno, California

Dr. Jennifer Taylor-Mendoza is Vice President of Instruction at Skyline College (California), with over twenty years of higher education experience. Dr. Taylor-Mendoza is continually inspired by the brilliance, power, and endless potential of community college students. Her research focuses on the intrinsic resiliency of students of color and institutional approaches to addressing systemic, structural inequities. She holds a B.A. in psychology from California State University, Los Angeles, an M.S. in counseling from California State University, Northridge, and a Ph.D. in education from Claremont Graduate University.

Contact email: [email protected]


Dr. Jamillah Moore, President @ Cañada College, Redwood City, California

Dr. Jamillah Moore is President of Cañada College, an award-winning institution located in the heart of the Silicon Valley.  She was appointed to the position in June of 2016 by the San Mateo County Community College District (SMCCCD) Board of Trustees.  She comes to Cañada College after working at SMCCCD where she served as the Vice Chancellor for Educational Services and Planning for the 2015-2016 academic year. 

 A native Californian, President Moore holds two degrees from California State University, Sacramento- a Bachelor of Arts in Communication and a Masters in Intercultural Communication and Public Policy.  Dr. Moore also earned a Doctorate from the University of San Francisco in International and Multicultural Education. 

Dr. Moore’s background also includes teaching and research in the area of educational access and equity with a primary focus on student success for minority and low-income students.  She has consulted on education policy issues with college systems and policymaking organizations in California and Washington, DC.  She has testified in front of local governments and the state legislature. As a former California State Senate Fellow, legislative staffer and consultant to the Senate Select Committee on Higher Education Admissions and Outreach.  Dr. Moore has written policy as well as advocated and fundraised on behalf of California students.  She was a member of the policy team that advocated for admission in the local context for the University of California.  With an educational career spanning more than 25 years, Dr. Jamillah Moore has become known for her passion on educational excellence, commitment to students, strategic leadership, and tackling difficult issues.  President Moore has a reputation for leveraging collaborative partnerships with public and private organizations, enabling students, faculty and staff to cross institutional boundaries and engage in innovative instruction to ensure student success.

Contact email: [email protected]


Dr. Edward Bush, President @ Cosumnes River College, Sacramento, California

Dr. Edward Bush has over 20 years of experience in higher education with 17 of those years in the California Community College system. Dr. Bush currently serves as the President of Cosumnes River College in Sacramento, Ca.  Dr. Bush has served as a tenured associate faculty member in student activities, Director of the Educational Talent Search federal TRIO grant, and Dean of Student Services.  In addition, has served on numerous college, district, and state-wide committees throughout his career and has been active in several community organizations including serving on the board for four non-profit foundations.  Dr. Bush has also worked as an adjunct instructor for the Graduate School of Education at the University of Redlands and Brandman University. Dr. Bush has taught courses in student development, organizational theory, and research. 

 Dr. Bush is an innovative leader that has a history of developing programs and services that foster both student access and success; including the development of targeted programs for historically underserved populations as well as veterans. Most recently Dr. Bush has garnered acclaim for the implementation of the 2-year graduation guarantee contract for first time freshmen from the local feeder school districts.  Under his leadership this program has shown to significantly improve the time to degree completion and achievement rates in unprecedented numbers.  Dr. Edward Bush is scholar-practitioner, thus has co-authored 2 books, 2 book chapters, and 8 peer reviewed publications appearing in journals including: Black Issues in Higher EducationCommunity College Week, Diverse Educational Horizons, Journal of African American Males in Education, and the Community College Journal. Moreover Dr. Bush is a sought after speaker on issues relating to student success, equity, diversity, and leadership. He has been an invited presenter for numerous local, statewide, and national organizations.

Dr. Bush received his Bachelors of Arts degree in Political Science from University of California, Riverside, Master’s Degree in Public Administration from California State University, San Bernardino, and his Ph.D. in Educational Leadership from Claremont Graduate University in Urban Educational Leadership.

Contact email: [email protected]


Dr. Matais Pouncil

Dr. Matais Pouncil, Vice President, Academic Affairs @ Evergreen Valley College, San Jose, California

Dr. Pouncil has nearly 25 years of professional experience at California Community Colleges. He currently serves as the Vice President, Academic Affairs, Evergreen Valley College He has served as a Dean of Student Services, an Associate Dean of Financial Aid Services and Student Success; a Dean of Science and Technology, Dean of Enrollment Services; EOPS Director, Assistant Director and Counselor of EOP; and TRIO coordinator. His most senior level appointment was a two-year term as Interim Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs.

Additionally, Dr. Pouncil has taught graduate students at the University of California, Irvine, and has served as full time faculty at California State University, East Bay. Dr. Pouncil earned a B.S. in Economics from Southern University, in Baton Rouge, LA; a M.Ed. in Social and Multicultural Foundations from California State University, Long Beach, and he is the first African American man to earn an Ed.D. from the University of California, Irvine. Additionally, he is a graduate of the prestigious Management Development Program (MDP) at the Harvard University Graduate School of Education.

Contact email: [email protected]


Narcisa A. Polonio, Ed.D., Executive Team Leader for Community College Practice President, Narcisa Inc and Senior Advisor to the Steve Fund

Narcisa A. Polonio, Ed.D., was the former Executive Vice President of Education, Research & Board Leadership Services at the Association of Community College Trustees (ACCT). Serving ACCT for 18 years, Narcisa is recognized for having a long and distinguished history of providing outstanding services to boards of governance, presidents, chancellors, State systems throughout the country. Dr. Polonio is recognized as one of the leading authorities on governance and presidential leadership. She has facilitated over 600 retreats, governance institutes, and presidential searches. She provided direction for the ACCT’s annual leadership Congress, publications, research projects and leadership services including Retreat Service; Presidential Search Service; the Governance Leadership Institute; and New & Experienced Trustees Institutes. She is currently associated with the Greenwood/Asher & Associate, Inc. a nationally recognized university executive recruitment firm. She also serves as a Senior Advisor to the Steve Fund, a nonprofit organization dedicated to addressing the mental health needs of students of color in colleges and universities.

Dr. Polonio directed The Trustees for Student Success national initiative, which seeks to increase the engagement of community college trustees and governing boards in the student success movement. This initiative includes the nationally acclaimed Governance Institute for Student Success (GISS).  She provided leadership to several different initiatives, including: the Trustee Education Webinar Series, Governance Recognition Program, and Completion Symposia; supported by grants from the Kresge Foundation, Lumina Foundation, Strada Network, William & Melinda Gates Foundation, and corporate contributions. Dr. Polonio previously served as the Chief Operating Officer for Replication and Program Strategies, Inc. (RPS) in Philadelphia, PA, and president of Harcum College (PA) and Hudson County Community College (NJ). Other previous positions include Director of the Office of Community Colleges, New Jersey Department of Higher Education. Dr. Polonio served for seven years as a faculty member for the Institute for Educational Management, Graduate School of Education, Harvard University. In addition, she served in State government for over 9 years.

She has an extensive list of publications and speaks throughout the country on issues related to

governance, leadership, and diversity.  Dr. Polonio attended Foothill Community College, CA and holds a BA in History from San Jose State University (CA), an MA from Stanford University (CA), an Ed.D. from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst.

Contact information: 202.276.1983 (mobile) 
[email protected]


Dr. Abdimalik Buul, Faculty @ San Diego City College, San Diego, California

Dr. Abdimalik Buul is an award-winning professor, antiracist activist, progressive practitioner, and emancipatory educator.  He is an innovative dynamic leader within the San Diego community and throughout the state of California. He completed his bachelor’s degree in Sociology and a master’s degree in education with an emphasis in community-based counseling and social justice, both from San Diego State University (SDSU).  He completed his doctorate work in Educational Leadership with an emphasis in Educational Psychology from the University of Southern California (USC).  He is a Professor and Transfer Center Director in the counseling department at San Diego City College. Dr. Buul is also a lecturer at San Diego State University (SDSU) where he teaches Restorative Practices and Conflict Transformation to students in the Advanced Graduate Certificate in Mental Health Recovery & Trauma-informed Care MA in Education with concentration in Counseling program. He serves as a task force member on the Academic Senate for California Community Colleges (ASCCC) Equity Diversity and Action Committee.  

As an active community leader, he serves on several boards and roles including:

  • President for Markaz al Madina a community-based non-profit
  • Vice President of the Somali Community of San Diego
  • Board member at large for African American Male and Educational Development Network (A2mend),
  • Board Member for the board for the United Taxi Drivers Union in San Diego.

Contact email: [email protected]


Nickawanna Shaw, Faculty @  Citrus College, Glendora, California

Nickawanna Shaw is faculty in the division of Kinesiology, Health, and Athletics at Citrus College. In her time at the College, she has lead Curriculum, Academic Senate, and most recent is a Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, co-chair. 

Contact email: [email protected]


Professor Silvester Carl Henderson, Past President, Faculty Senate Coordinating Council (District Senate) Contra Costa Community College District

Recently elected to receive the A2MEND Educational Leadership Award -2020, Professor Henderson is also the recipient of the Albert Nelson 2019 Marquis “Who’s Who Lifetime Achievement Award”. Professor Silvester Carl Henderson is a nationally recognized Professor, educator, conference motivational speaker, business owner, respected real estate investor, community artistic organizer, musician/artist, internet radio blog personality, and conductor of the Gospel Song. Professor Henderson was recently Re-Elected to the “Executive Committee” for the Academic Senate for California Community Colleges (ASCCC). Comprised of 14 members, the ASCCC “Executive Committee” is the major governing board, who advises and advocates for changes and implementation regarding new educational laws and policies. This body supports academic and professional matters for 72,000 California Professors and two million, two hundred thousand students. As the Chair of the “Part Time Committee” and Emeritus Chair of the “Equity Diversity & Action Committee”, for the ASCCC, Professor Henderson, advocates, for Faculty Diversity, Foster Youth, Inmate Education and academic access for African American Males. Inducted into the “2017 Pittsburg Entertainment and Arts Hall of Fame”, Professor Henderson earned his Bachelor of Music and his Master of Arts Degrees from San Francisco State University.

Contact email: [email protected]


Dr. Ameer Thompson, Dean, Science and Technology @ Cañada College, Redwood City, California

Dr. Ameer Thompson serves as the Dean of Science and Technology at Cañada College in Redwood City, CA. Dr. Thompson previously served as the interim Dean of Natural, Social, and Applied Sciences at Contra Costa College (CCC). Prior to his work at CCC, Dr. Thompson was the Founding Director of the Saint Mary’s College of California, Hispanic-Serving Institution– STEM program and adjunct faculty at Diablo Valley College (DVC), where he taught human physiology. Prior to those positions, he worked as a Scientific Analyst for a global law firm.

As a Bay Area native, Dr. Thompson attended DVC before completing a Bachelor of Science in biological sciences at California State University, Sacramento. Dr. Thompson received a Ph.D. in physiology, biophysics and systems biology from Cornell University. He completed a postdoctoral fellowship at Columbia University with Nobel Laureate, Dr. Martin Chalfie.

Dr. Thompson has published works in several high impact scientific journals including Nature Structure and Molecular Biology and PNAS. He is the recipient of a number of awards including the National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship and the Ford Foundation Fellowship. He also has a robust history of community service and educational outreach to underserved communities.

Contact email: [email protected]


Dr. Shaun L. McKay,

Dr. Shaun L. McKay is an accomplished leader in post-secondary education, who, from 2010 to May 2019, served as President of Suffolk County Community College, the largest community college in the State of New York, with an annual enrollment of over 30,000 credit-earning and 8,000 continuing education students. Before becoming its President, Dr. Shaun L. McKay served as Executive Dean, CEO of Suffolk’s Grant Campus, serving the western communities of the county. Prior to joining Suffolk, Dr. McKay served as Director of Planning for the Community College of Baltimore County and spent eight years in various positions at Morgan State University. He has also taught both undergraduate and graduate courses at several institutions. Dr. Shaun McKay received his Ed. D. in Higher Education Administration with a specialization in Community College Leadership from Morgan State University in Baltimore, his M.A. in Management and Communication from the College of Notre Dame in Baltimore and his B.S. in Business Management from the University of Maryland, College Park.

Contact email: [email protected]


Dr. Marshall Fulbright, III, Vice President, Academic Affairs @ Grossmont College, San Diego, California

Dr. Marshall Fulbright, III currently serves as the Vice President, Academic Affairs at Grossmont College in San Diego, California.  His prior assignment was at Norco College, a Hispanic-Serving Institution in Riverside County, where he served as Dean of Instruction for the School of Arts & Humanities and the School of Social & Behavioral Sciences. During his time there, Norco College participated in the pilot program of the California Guided Pathways Project and implemented guided pathways for its students.

Prior to Norco College, Fulbright was the dean of the Division of Arts, Letters and Learning Resources at College of the Sequoias, a Hispanic-Serving Institution in Visalia in the San Joaquin Valley. He also previously served as chair and tenured music professor in the Performing Arts Department at Long Beach City College. In total, Fulbright has more than 20 years’ teaching experience in primary, secondary and higher education.

Dr. Fulbright has a Doctorate of Education in Higher Education Leadership from Azusa Pacific University, a Master’s of music in orchestral conducting from the University of California Santa Barbara, and a Bachelor’s of music, music education, and orchestral conducting from Chapman University.


Donna M. Buchanan, Ed.D., President @ Crucial Shift Consulting

Donna Buchanan, Ed.D. has over 20 years of experience in successfully creating and implementing strategic plans, change management strategies and professional development programs. Certified in change/transition management, she helps organizations work to systematically eliminate institutional discrimination as well as implement compliance programs, student outcome initiatives, continuous improvement and process reengineering projects, organizational restructuring plans, technology upgrades, client service plans, and stakeholder engagement strategies. Dr. Buchanan works effectively with a diverse range of professionals in a wide range of industries to solve business problems, seize opportunities and achieve the organization’s mission. She helps clients navigate complex circumstances to deliver practical, sustainable, cost-effective outcomes.

Dr. Buchanan has taught college courses and professional development courses in leadership

development, cross-cultural human development, diversity, and business management. She has also taught strategic planning and anti-bias strategies to administrators, educators and social service professionals from around the world. Donna is widely respected for creating inclusive learning environments grounded in adult learning theory, socio-cultural context, anti-bias principles and multiple intelligence theory. She honors the knowledge, voice, and humanity of all students and participants.

Dr. Buchanan has worked for, or consulted for, organizations such as the University of Southern

California, Cañada College, Pacific Oaks College, Tacoma Community College, Tacoma

News Tribune, Procter & Gamble, Coca-Cola, L.A. Leadership Academy, Sports Illustrated for Kids,KCPQ-13 FOX, and Pierce County School District.

Donna has earned a BA in Sociology from Loyola Marymount University, MA in Cross Cultural Human Development and Teaching Adults from Pacific Oaks College, and a Doctorate in Higher Education Administration from the University of Southern California.

Contact email: [email protected]


Dr. Oyame KenZoe Brian J. Selassie-Okpe, Dean @ City College of San Francisco

Dr. Oyame KenZoe Brian J. Selassie-Okpe is an incredibly talented and dynamic critical theories and intercultural communications research scholar, professor, and academic administrator specializing in intercultural communication, sociolinguistics, organizational communication and behavior, Africana womanism, nonheterosexualities, and nonverbal communication. In addition, his extensive experience includes nonprofit and government diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging (DEI&B) and resource development consulting for clients such as the United States Department of Health and Human Services and seminar series keynote speaker for the US Office of Administrative Courts.

Dr. Selassie-Okpe is a 2016-2017 Fulbright-Hays scholarship recipient and serves as an Advisory Board Member and Acquisitions manager for Universal Write Publications. He is the concurrent Dean, School of English, World Languages and Cultures, and Communication Studies; Dean, School of Fine, Applied, and Communication Arts; and Advisory Resource committee member to the Diversity Committee and Black Student Union at City College of San Francisco. His extensive and diverse education portfolio includes a Post-doctoral Certificate in Diversity and Inclusion from Cornell University, Doctorate of Philosophy in Communication and Culture from Howard University, Master of Public Administration from Walden University, Master of Organizational Management, Organizational Behavior from University of Phoenix, and Bachelor of Arts, Mass Media Communication from University of Mount Union.

Recently, Dr. Selassie-Okpe has served as Editor of Dr. Molefi K. Asante’s 2019 publication: 400 Years of Witnessing alongside writing his own chapter and journal publications.

Contact email: [email protected]


Dr. Joel Powell

Dr. Joel Powell, Dean @ Los Rios Community College District

Dr. Powell is a native of the San Francisco Bay Area, and has continued to enjoy a career in higher education for nearly two decades. He has served as an instructional Dean in the Los Rios Community College District, and as a full-time faculty member in Political Science in multiple districts across the state.

Dr. Powell has an extensive background in developing policy for public contracting agencies. He has worked with several transportation, aviation, and collegiate school districts developing contract policies for small, local, woman-owned, and disadvantaged business enterprises. He was instrumental in the development and delivery of legal services as a founding member of the John F. Kennedy University, School of Law Elder Law Clinic, and is a current member of both the Western Political Science Association and the American Political Science Association. He is an accomplished public speaker and has been a presenter for the California Department of Finance, the LDI Leadership Institute, a keynote speaker for the AGS Honor Society, the YLC Entrepreneurial Academy, and a participant in the White House Summit on African American Education.

As a tenured professor, Dr. Powell has served as an advisor for Student Government organizations, been the Chair of the Faculty Association Grievance Committee, the Legislative Liaison for Academic Senate, and the Faculty Coordinator for the Community College Pathway to Law School (CCPLS) Initiative. He has served as an Equity Officer championing efforts to support student success, and was instrumental in developing the first fully online cybersecurity collaborative with Fresno City College and LA Pierce.

He has been involved in the delivery of resume building and interview consultation for persons seeking instructional positions within the Community College system, and consistently serves on administrative and academic hiring committees. He is a published author and has an extensive instructional background in a wide array of courses emphasizing politics, law, history and economics.

Aside from his Doctorate in Jurisprudence, Dr. Powell holds a baccalaureate degree in Political Science from the University of California, Davis, where he still functions as an advisor for the undergraduate Lambda Kappa chapter of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc.

 Contact email: [email protected]


Dr. Teresa W. Aldredge, President, Board of Directors @ Umoja Community Education Foundation

Dr. Teresa Aldredge has been a counselor/instructor at Cosumnes River College since 1992. She also

serves as the Program Coordinator/Counselor for the Umoja Diop Scholars Program on the campus and also teaches in the Human Services department. Dr. Aldredge brings statewide organizational leadership to the board from her experience as President of both the California Counseling Association (CCA) and the California Community College Counselors Association (4CA). In addition, she has served as interim Treasurer for the Faculty Association for California Community Colleges (FACCC) for two terms and served on the FACCC Board as Regional Governor Area F and Governor at Large. She has served as Academic Senate President and the Counseling Department Chair at Cosumnes River College.

Dr. Aldredge is a founding member of the Umoja Community and holds the position as President of the Board of Directors of the Umoja Community Education Foundation. She served as Acting Executive Director during the search for a permanent Executive Director.

Dr. Aldredge also serves as a member of the Black and African American Advisory Panel, which develops recommendations for advancing opportunities for Blacks and African Americans in the California Community Colleges’ system. In addition, she is a member on the GIRL (Girls in Robotic Leadership) Advisory Board (a component of the UC Davis C-STEM Center) which provides input for increasing the number of girls in middle and high schools to learn computing and STEM.

Dr. Aldredge received her A.A. in Liberal Arts from Palomar College, a B.A. in Psychology from the University of California, San Diego, her M.A. in Education: Counselor Education from San Diego State University, and her Ed.D. in Educational Leadership from the University of California, Davis and California State University, Fresno joint doctoral program.

Contact email: [email protected]


Julian Branch

Julian Branch, Director, Workforce Development  has been working at Cañada College for the past 18 months and been in higher education for the past 10 years. Before joining the Cañada team he had worked for the University of California, Davis. Julian has created programs in water technologies, funeral education, artificial intelligence, data analysis, product design, business leadership, English and more. During the start of his career Julian developed and managed educational programs for international students at The University of Toledo, and the University of California, Irvine. He received his A.A. in Entrepreneurship, and B.A in management from Northwood University and his M.A. in education from Hiroshima University. Julian is also a doctoral candidate in education, and his research focuses on using quantitative methods to estimate the effect of course modality of dual enrollment programs on high school students’ academic achievement and academic self-efficacy.