Anne Howsare Boyens hired as next Iowa Valley president

T-R PHOTOS BY LANA BRADSTREAM — Outgoing IVCCD President Kristie Fisher stands with Anne Howsare Boyens on Wednesday during a meeting in which Howsare Boyens was hired as the new president. Fisher said she was happy with the board’s decision to offer the position to Howsare Boyens and feels good about leaving the district in her hands.

During a special meeting held Wednesday, the Iowa Valley Community College District Board of Directors offered the position of president to Anne Howsare Boyens, and she happily accepted.

After a short closed session meeting during which the board members spoke about their choice, Howsare Boyens walked into the room and shook the hands of all the board members. She sat in the IVCCD president’s chair at the table and the board unanimously voted to hire her as the new president.

“It is my pleasure and honor to introduce to you the newest member of the Iowa Valley family, our new president,” said Board President Larry Johnson.

Howsare Boyens, 46, comes to IVCCD from the Des Moines Area Community College where she worked as provost. She said it was with a profound sense of honor to accept the new position. Howsare Boyens thanked outgoing President Kristie Fisher for her dedication and hard work in shaping IVCCD into what it is today.

“I must acknowledge the remarkable legacy of Iowa Valley Community College District and its colleges,” she said. “For decades this district has been a beacon of education and opportunity, fostering the growth and development of countless individuals.”

T-R PHOTO BY LANA BRADSTREAM New Iowa Valley Community College District President Anne Howsare Boyens greets board members during a special meeting on Wednesday. The board unanimously approved her hiring during the meeting.

Howsare Boyens added she is aware of the challenges that lay ahead with the changing educational landscape. She said navigating those requires innovation, adaptability and a commitment to student success. Howsare Boyens wants to help lead IVCCD into a future of excellence and inclusivity.

“I am committed first and foremost to our students,” she said. “Whether they are pursuing a degree, seeking workforce development opportunities or enriching their lives, we will be their lifelong partner in achieving their dreams. Furthermore, I am committed to fostering an inclusive and diverse community. One of our many strengths lie in our differences. It is through inclusivity that we will thrive.”

Johnson said they were thrilled to have Howsare Boyens on board. Originally from Pella, she said she has lived in a few different parts of Iowa. Now Howsare Boyens and her family — husband Jessie, son Jude, 12 and daughter Joss, 7 — plan to move to Marshalltown. She said the rich history in the area is what prompted her to apply for the IVCCD president position.

“The size really appeals to me, being able to make sure I know the community, the members, the students and staff and faculty, and being able to make those connections,” Howsare Boyens said. “Also, it’s a great opportunity. The schools here for our children are great, and the opportunity to follow Kristie — we’ve known each other for a long time.”

Fisher, who was present at the meeting, said she was happy to see Howsare Boyens as her successor.

“I’ve known Anne since 2005. We did our PhD together,” she said. “She’s a great person. She’s smart. She cares. I feel good about leaving it in her hands.”

As Fisher comes closer to her last day — Oct. 20 — before taking the reins at Kirkwood Community College, she said she feels bittersweet.

“It’s been a great four years,” Fisher said. “We’ve had two dorm fires, a pandemic and a derecho and I still look back on it as four years of joy. It’s because of the people I worked with, and I know Anne will find the same joy.”

Johnson said the details of when Howsare Boyens will officially begin are still being worked out. He said they had three highly qualified candidates, but finally made a difficult decision.

“We looked at what each of them would offer in terms of the vision,” Johnson said. “It came down to which of these three great visions, great people were going to take us to the next level. Any one of them could, but Dr. Boyens rose to the top of the three.”

Contact Lana Bradstream at 641-753-6611 ext. 210 or lbradstream@timesrepublican.com.


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