Big Bend announces Top 3 finalists for next President

Suzanne Ames headshot
Dr. Suzanne Ames


Sara Thompson Tweedy
Sara Thompson Tweedy


Teresa Rich Headshot
Dr. Teresa Rich

Office of Communications

During a special meeting of the Big Bend Community College Board of Trustees (BOT) on Thursday afternoon, the Top 3 finalists were revealed in the search for the College’s tenth President.

In mid-January, the Presidential Search Committee submitted five candidates to the BOT and those candidates each visited Big Bend in late January to tour the College, the City of Moses Lake, to participate in multiple open-forum question and answer sessions, and to meet with faculty, staff, and students.

Those visits, in addition to feedback from community and employee surveys and reference checks, all populated the criteria the BOT used to select the three finalists.

  • Suzanne Ames, Vice President of Instruction at Lake Washington Institute of Technology
  • Teresa Rich, Vice President of Administrative Services at Yakima Valley College
  • Sara Thompson Tweedy, Vice President of Student Access, Involvement, and Success at Westchester Community College

“We are pleased to announce our three finalists that will move forward with the possibility to become the next President of Big Bend Community College,” said Board Chairman Stephen McFadden. “The next step will be to try and coordinate the travel schedules of all of the trustees to make our on-site visits to each of our finalists.”

During Thursday’s special meeting, the BOT floated tentative dates for travel inside of the state to visit Dr. Ames and Dr. Rich, and for their visit to New York to visit Dr. Thompson Tweedy. The BOT will finalize the date at their next regularly scheduled meeting on Feb. 14.

The BOT still has a goal of March 31 to make the final announcement.

The college’s current president, Terry Leas, announced in August that he would retire at the end of the 2019-20 academic year. Leas has been BBCC president since 2012.

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