RCC President announces Plans to Retire after 15 Years of Service

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DECATUR – Dr. Gayle Saunders may be the sixth president of Richland Community College, but she holds the title of being the first female president.

"Being the first female president all rolled into one becomes really a striking opportunity for me to reflect the importance of women in the workplace as well as providing the leadership in the workplace for other women to aspire to,” Dr. Saunders explains.

Dr. Saunders announced Wednesday, October 21, that she plans to retire in the spring of 2016 after serving as the face of Richland for 15 years. She has been considering this next chapter in her life as the college continues to grow, along with her family.

"We have children and grandchildren that are emerging very quickly for us. Now we have twins to expect in March, and another new child to expect in June, and we have a wedding in our near future with our kids,” Dr. Saunders adds.

Bruce Campbell, Chair to Richland’s Board of Trustees and a friend of Dr. Saunders, believes there will be no short cuts taken when looking to replace such a paramount leader.

"How do you take someone like that, whose shoes are bigger than life, and say we can fill them? Well, we can’t, so we just go on and the great thing about all of this is she’s had a tremendous, stellar career here at Richland, and not only for Richland and Richland students, but the tremendous impact she’s had on the entire community,” Campbell says.

“Richland has become my second home… it’s the people I will miss the most,” Dr. Saunders reflects.

Dr. Saunders leaves the college networks and a reputation that will be sustainable for years and generations to come.

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