College launches presidential search, names interim


Dan Spatz
Executive Director, Institutional Advancement, (541) 506-6034

September 13, 2017

Board members at Columbia Gorge Community College this week selected a national search firm to lead the quest for a new president, meanwhile naming the college's chief academic officer, Lori Ufford, as interim president for the institution.

Gold Hill Associates, the firm selected by board members Tuesday night, was among five search firms responding to the board’s invitation for proposals. The firm is composed of six principal associates based across the United States. Two of them, Dr. Walter Nolte and Dr. Preston Pulliams, would be assigned to the CGCC presidential search once an agreement is formalized. Dr. Nolte recently retired as president of Casper College, Wyo. Dr. Pulliams, the owner of Gold Hill Associates, was president of Portland Community College from 2004-13.

During Dr. Pulliams’ presidency at PCC he worked closely with Dr. Frank Toda, CGCC's outgoing president, in CGCC's successful quest for independent accreditation. Columbia Gorge Community College had been accredited through PCC since its founding in 1977. The college board selected Gold Hill based in part on Pulliams’ own familiarity with CGCC’s history.

The presidential search begins immediately, with the goal of selecting a new president by mid-summer 2018. A local search committee representing college faculty, staff, students, foundation and community at large will help guide the process.

Dr. Toda concludes his CGCC presidency on Sept. 29. As interim president, Lori Ufford will lead the institution until selection of Dr. Toda’s successor next summer. Ufford joined CGCC as an academic adviser in 2001. She directed student advising and career services from 2006 to 2012, when she became chief student services officer. She accepted the additional role of chief academic officer in 2014, directing both student services and academic affairs until 2016 when she took on the sole responsibility of chief academic officer. Ufford, a resident of The Dalles, has her Masters of Science in Education from Portland State University.