Iowa Valley Chancellor selection coming Wednesday

The Iowa Valley Community College District Board of Directors is set to name the district’s new chancellor at a special meeting Wednesday.

The decision will come after months of interviews, candidate visits and deliberation on who should replace Chancellor Chris Duree after he retires June 31. Four candidates are up for the position, all with previous community college experience.

They are:

• Joe DeHart — Current Des Moines Area Community College (DMACC) Newton Campus provost. DeHart said Iowa Valley’s diversity, student success rate and graduation rate were major pulls to try out for the chancellorship. He said he has an accessible and approachable leadership style. While budgeting, DeHart said major factors to keep in mind include student achievement and safety, while financial efficiency is also key. DeHart previously worked at Iowa Valley’s alternative high school programs in the 90s, as well as at the Iowa Department of Education. He holds a doctorate in educational leadership and a masters degree in educational leadership.

• Kristie Fisher — Current Senior Director of National Associations and Market Engagement with ACT Inc., Fisher said she would lean on what she’s learned over several years at Kirkwood Community College if selected as Iowa Valley’s new chancellor. While she has enjoyed her work at ACT, Fisher said she wants to get back to working with students and educators. She said she would bring a philosophy of aligning the district’s values with its budget, while also facing the financial realities handed to the community college system. Fisher holds a doctorate in educational leadership and policy studies and a master of business administration.

• Martin Reimer — Current Ellsworth Community College Provost Martin Reimer said he wants to further improve Iowa Valley from the chancellor’s position. He said he would use his four years of experience within Iowa Valley if chosen for the spot. Reimer said he is familiar with the district’s communities and has good working relationships with the area’s legislators, who play a big role in how much funding community colleges get each year. He said he would focus on making data-driven decisions if selected as chancellor. Reimer holds a doctorate in higher education administration and a master of business administration in international management.

• Greg Schmitz — Current President of CVT Group and Vice President of Eagle View Partners in Cedar Falls, Schmitz also has experience as president of Hawkeye Community College district, an equivalent position to the Iowa Valley chancellorship position. Schmitz said he is a strategic thinker and wants to work off the platform left by Duree if chosen to run the district. He said communication would be key under his watch and he would place student achievement at the center of his budgeting philosophy. Schmitz holds a doctorate in educational leadership and a masters degree in higher education.

The Iowa Valley special board meeting is set for 4 p.m. Wednesday at the District Administration Office, 3702 S. Center St. The board is set to go into closed session to discuss the candidates. The board is then set to go into open session to vote on a chancellor candidate agreement.

The person selected is set to take up the chancellor’s position effective July 1.


Contact Adam Sodders at

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