Dr. Jack Kahn announced as the next president of Shoreline Community College

The college’s board of trustees came to a unanimous decision to offer Kahn the position after a three-month presidential search and interview process

(Shoreline, Wash.) – Shoreline Community College (SCC) has announced the appointment of Dr. Jack Kahn to serve as the new college president. He will take office on July 2. 

Kahn was one of four finalists in the presidential search conducted by the SCC Presidential Screening Committee and Academic Search, Inc., a national search firm specializing in higher education. The board of trustees voted and announced Kahn as the president at the public March 2 board meeting. 

As SCC president, Kahn’s responsibilities will include creating inclusive and comprehensive educational opportunities for students by guiding and maintaining the extensive community partnerships and cultivating a college environment that leverages the talents and dedication of the SCC faculty and staff. He will also be charged with leading the community through development of its next strategic plan, modeling a commitment to enhancing diversity, equity and inclusion and infusing those values throughout the SCC academic programs, student life and college operations. 

Kahn said he was interested in the SCC president role for several reasons, including the college’s focus on student success and commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion.

“I was drawn to the student-centered organization of the academic pathways and, of course, all of the great academic programs at SCC. I really enjoyed seeing the innovative new programs such as the mental health and policing merge.” said Kahn. “I was also drawn to Shoreline’s commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion work through the multicultural center, gender equity center, diversity of students and various campus initiatives.” 

Kahn has more than 25 years of experience in higher education and has served as a leader for more than a decade. Most recently, he has been the assistant superintendent/vice president at Palomar College in San Marcos, California. He also previously served as the Palomar Community College District’s interim superintendent/president and was the dean of the division of social and behavioral sciences at Palomar College. Prior to his work in academic leadership, Kahn was an active faculty member and published researcher and author of works addressing issues of psychological testing, masculinity and social justice. 

In his role as interim superintendent/president, Kahn oversaw more than 1,600 employees, a student population of 25,000 and an annual budget of $568 million with a continued emphasis on equity and social change. He led the college through a fiscal crisis, steered the Emergency Operations center team through the COVID pandemic, worked with colleagues to save taxpayers $21 million by refinancing Prop M bonds and assisted in transitioning a new shared governance structure. Kahn was also active in collaborating with colleagues to develop a robust antiracist plan for the institution. 

The first person in his family to pursue a four-year college degree, Kahn earned his bachelor’s degree in psychology with a minor in philosophy from Arizona State University. He went on to earn a Master of Arts in marriage and family counseling from San José State University before attending the State University of New York at Buffalo to earn a doctorate in counseling psychology.

In his spare time, Kahn enjoys seeing live music and theater, traveling, exploring new neighborhoods, trying new restaurants, hiking, reading, gardening, cooking and spending time with his wife Jackie, two dogs and cat. Kahn and his wife look forward to relocating to Washington so he can begin his new role at SCC this summer. 

“My career goal has been to bring diverse people together to create systems that are integrated with the broader community to serve students, particularly with a lens toward equity,” said Kahn. “I have tried to do so using my own privileges to serve and advocate for others. In all of the roles I have been in, I have been fortunate to have been able to establish several mechanisms with long-lasting effects in this regard. I am really excited about all the work we will do together at Shoreline.”

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