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Two Pima Administrators to Participate in Prestigious Aspen Institute Leadership Program

April 30, 2019

Tucson, AZ   – Two Pima Community College administrators have been selected to participate in the Aspen Institute’s highly competitive Aspen Presidential Fellowship for Community College Excellence, a leadership program preparing the next generation of community college presidents to transform institutions to achieve higher and more equitable levels of student success, in college and the labor market. 

Dr. Ian Roark, Vice President of Workforce Development, and Dr. Irene Robles-Lopez, Vice President of Student Affairs, will embark on a 10-month fellowship beginning in July 2019.

Delivered in collaboration with the Stanford Educational Leadership Initiative, the fellows will work with mentors – current and former community college presidents – who have achieved exceptional outcomes for students throughout their careers. Fellows will also learn from national experts about ways to harness data to assess student success outcomes, strategies for internal change leadership, and how to create strong external partnerships with K-12 schools, four-year colleges, and employers.

Dr. Roark plans to use the skills he will refine during the fellowship to lead needed change in order to advance excellence in learning, equity, completion, and upward mobility.  He elaborates, “In this era of rapid technological, demographic, and economic change, our aspirations and values as community colleges and community college leaders should not change, but the way in which we deliver those values to our communities absolutely has to.” 

Dr. Robles-Lopez also plans to focus on the rapidly changing landscape of higher education.  She comments, “Meeting the needs of our changing demographics in addressing diversity, equity and inclusion must be an integral part of our work. Focusing on community college excellence utilizing a collective impact approach by creating partnerships, embracing technology and focusing on completion is fundamental to student success.”

Bios for Drs. Robles-Lopez and Roark may be found at the Aspen Institute website.

Other Pima Community College employees earning honors at the local, state and national levels:

  • Missy Blair, Center for Transportation Training Program Manager, has been named one of the Women In Trucking Association's Top Women to Watch in Transportation.
  • Christy Camargo, Events Coordinator, has been named Outstanding First Sergeant by the Arizona Air National Guard.
  • Provost Dolores Durán-Cerda received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Metropolitan Education Commission on April 26.
  • Chancellor Lee D. Lambert was awarded the Thomas L. Swanson Regional Leadership Award by the Pima Association of Governments Regional Council for efforts to bolster workforce development and economic vitality initiatives in the region. Lambert was also elected President of the National Asian Pacific Islanders Council (NAPIC).
  • Kurt Weirich, Director of Internal Audit, has been selected to participate in the 2019 Global Institute of Internal Auditors (IIA) Leadership Academy.



Janae Hinson


 Media, Government and Community Relations