Candidate Bios | Bismarck State College

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Candidate Bios

The North Dakota State Board of Higher Education will name BSC's next president at their March 26 meeting. A total of 41 applications were submitted for the position. The BSC Presidential Search Committee interviewed 12 candidates and narrowed the field to the top five for campus visits before choosing three finalists to send to the NDSBHE for final interviews.

Dr. Clark Harris

Special Assistant to the President
Laramie County Community College
Dr. Harris Biography
Dr. Clark Harris
Student success, teaching and learning have always been at the heart of Clark’s professional career. With over 30 years of successful professional experience in the field of education, he brings innovative thinking, extensive leadership experience, vast and in-depth knowledge of career and technical education (CTE), online learning expertise, partnership building experience and an entrepreneurial spirit to the position of president of Bismarck State College.
 
Clark served as Vice President of Academic Affairs (VPAA) and Special Assistant to the President at Laramie County Community College, (LCCC) WY, a school with 4,780 students. LCCC was selected by the American Association of Community Colleges as one of 13 colleges nationally for Guided Pathways 2.0. Clark was co-chair of the initiative, that included nine “must-have” focus areas including Advising, Excellence in Instruction, General Education 2.0, Program Maps, Course & Program Competencies, Co-Requisite Developmental Math & English, Pathways, Essential Student Experiences, and Streamlined Entry (Admissions). A large portion of the work is completed, and the initiative will be fully implemented in Fall 2020.
 
As VPAA at LCCC, the School of Arts & Humanities; the School of Business, Agriculture & Technical Studies (including the arena, horse & livestock facilities); the School of Health Science & Wellness, and the School of Math & Sciences reported to him. The division of Outreach & Workforce Development includes Adult Education; Certified Public Manager program, Community Education; Facilities & Events; High School Equivalency; Life Enrichment (including extensive Summer Youth programs); Outreach (Eastern Laramie County and the Warren Air Force Base Sites); and Workforce & Professional Development. Other departments included the Center for Excellence in Teaching; High School Programs (including Dual & Concurrent Enrollment & Gear Up); and the Library and Learning Commons (including the Exam Lab/Testing Center, Tutoring and Peer-Assisted Study Sessions).
 
Prior to coming to LCCC, Clark was the Dean of Technology at Mott Community College, a college of 8,000 students in Flint Michigan. In 2010 the enrollment rose to 12,500, due to Michigan’s economic downturn. In 2011, Mott was ranked by the Aspen Institute as one of the nation's top ten community colleges. The Technology Division included the trades and industrial programs, as well as all the computer programs. The division was a very robust, entrepreneurial division that developed a strong marketing plan that was implemented across the service area.
 
Other positions include Agricultural Education Assistant Professor & an adjunct faculty member in the Educational Computing, Design & Online Learning graduate program at Kansas State University, Tech Prep Director at State Fair Community College and Executive Director at a national curriculum consortium. Clark has presented over 100 significant national, regional or state conference presentations, and he has extensive marking and public relations experience.
 
Clark started his education at Johnson County Community College and transferred to Kansas State University where he earned his B.S. in Agricultural Education and an M.S. in Adult and Occupational Education. He earned his Ph.D. in Practical Arts and Technical Education, Agricultural Education (CTE), at the University of Missouri.
 
Clark is married to Paula Harris and has three adult sons, which are all engineers. He has been actively involved in the community with several roles in Boy Scouts from local units to the district and council levels; in several church responsibilities; Rotary International and as co-president of the board with the Stillwater Boys Choir.
 

Dr. Doug Jensen

President and CEO
Rock Valley College
Dr. Jensen Biography
Dr. Doug Jensen
Dr. Douglas J. Jensen became Rock Valley College’s seventh president in 2016.

Dr. Jensen has over 25 years of community college experience and is himself a community college graduate. Dr. Jensen understands and appreciates the barriers that students must overcome to be successful in their academic and career journey. He believes a community college is somewhere you can go where people will believe in you before you are capable of believing in yourself. Dr. Jensen’s experience as president at Rock Valley College (RVC) and past academic leadership roles have prepared him for the challenges facing many of our communities and the need to expand academic instructional program delivery, K-12 school district partnerships, workforce development education and public private partnerships. Dr. Jensen has helped the college navigate challenging fiscal year budget planning due to the state of Illinois budget crisis, stabilizing the college financially without reliance on state funding. Due to his leadership, the college has implemented crucial regional initiatives, including expanding Dual Credit, Linking Talent with Opportunity, Adult and K-12 Guided Pathways, and is researching and developing plans with public and private partners to bring an Advanced Technology Center to the Greater Rockford Region.

Dr. Jensen also impacts the community by serving on the boards for Region 1 Planning Council, Alignment Rockford, The Workforce Connection (WIOA), Growth Dimensions, and the RVC Foundation, as well as the Education and Workforce Development Advisory Committee (EWAC) of the Advanced Robotics for Manufacturing Institute (ARM). He also previously served as a board member for the National Coalition of Advanced Technology Centers (NCATC).

On campus, you will find Dr. Jensen where the students are, as he loves attending student events and activities. He and his wife Karen can always be found at a wide variety of student events and cheering on the RVC athletics teams throughout the year.

Dr. Jensen received a Doctorate of Education from Edgewood College in Madison, WI, and both his Master of Science and Bachelor of Science from Geneva College in Beaver Falls, PA. He is proud to be a community college graduate who earned an Associate of Science from Community College of Allegheny County in Pittsburgh, PA, where he would later work for over 15 years.

Prior to coming to RVC, Dr. Jensen served as president for the Alabama Technology Network (ATN) in the Alabama Community College System. ATN is the state of Alabama’s Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP), which is part of the National Institute of Standards and Technology’s (NIST) Hollings Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) agreement. ATN is one of the 50 national MEP centers nationwide.  He was previously Vice President of Economic Development/Chief Executive Officer (CEO) for the Advanced Technology Center (ATC) for Westmoreland County Community College in Youngwood, PA. This 73,000 square foot ATC facility is an anchor for the college’s commitment to be a leader in the region’s academic/career and technical education, workforce and economic development.

His community college academic leadership experience also includes serving at Northcentral Wisconsin Technical College in Wausau, WI as the Chief Academic Officer.  He also has community college academic leadership experience at Northeast Wisconsin Technical College in Green Bay, WI and Community College of Allegheny County in Pittsburgh, PA.

Doug and his wife Karen enjoy being active in the local community and enjoying the special activities that the region has to offer. Doug enjoys working on cars and spending time in the outdoors with his dog Oliver.
 

Dr. Phil Klein

Dean of Health and Public Safety
South Piedmont Community College
Dr. Klein Biography
Dr. Phil Klein
Dr. Klein serves as the inaugural Dean of the School of Health and Public Safety at South Piedmont Community College in North Carolina. In this role, he oversees both credit and non-credit programs and works closely with members of Union and Anson County’s Health and Public Safety communities. He is responsible for creating new programs and overseeing current offerings.

Klein spent the early part of his career working in public service as a firefighter/paramedic. He began his transition into higher education as an adjunct instructor while still employed as a career firefighter. In 2012, he was tasked to create a paramedic education program at Chattahoochee Technical College when he accepted the position of Emergency Medical Services Program Director. He has worked as a dean and an associate vice president at Gwinnett Technical College, where he focused on workforce development; however, he enjoys his current role most because he can directly make an impact on student success.

While working full-time, Klein earned an associate degree in liberal arts from Nassau Community College, a bachelor’s degree in political science from CUNY Queens, a master’s degree in public administration from Kaplan University, and a doctorate in higher education management from the University of Georgia.