Dr. Tonjua Williams selected as next St. Petersburg College President
During a special meeting on May 31, the Board of Trustees of St. Petersburg College (SPC) selected Tonjua Williams, Ph.D., as the college’s next President. The board voted unanimously on the selection.
Williams, SPC’s seventh president, will be the college’s first woman and first African-American to serve as president.
Trustee Deveron Gibbons said it was clear there was an obvious choice for SPC’s next president.
“I came with two names today, but I’m only submitting one: Dr. Tonjua Williams,” he said.
Trustees all agreed Williams was impressive during her interview.
“She didn’t have to sell me on SPC. I was more excited to be part of this institution after hearing her speak about it than I have been in maybe the past few years,” said Trustee Nathan Stonecipher. “She is passionate about St. Petersburg College. That bleeds out of her.”
Williams, a 30-year veteran of SPC, previously served as Vice President of Academic and Student Affairs and Provost of the Tarpon Springs Campus.
Williams earned a Ph.D. in Higher Education Administration from Barry University, a master’s degree in Counselor Education from University of South Florida, and a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration and Humanities from Clearwater Christian College.
Bill Law, who has served as SPC President since 2010, announced in Nov. 2016 that he would be retiring at the end of June 2017.
From 51 initial applicants, the college’s Search and Screen Committee voted in March to advance nine semi-finalists in the selection process. In April, the committee reconvened and voted to advance five finalists to the board for consideration.
“The Board members also want to express our gratitude to all of the highly qualified finalists for the time and dedication they have shown throughout this rigorous process,” said Bill Foster, Chair of the SPC Board of Trustees.