RCC Leadership

Dr. Kennedy

Dr. Shannon Kennedy

Dr. Shannon Kennedy became Rappahannock Community College’s fourth President on July 1, 2019.   Before becoming President, Dr. Kennedy worked at Cleveland Community College, in Shelby, North Carolina for nearly 19 years.  She served in a variety of leadership positions there, including Executive Vice President. Prior to Cleveland Community College, Dr. Kennedy worked at Gardner-Webb University, the Uptown Shelby Association, and Shelby Headline News.

A native of Baltimore, Maryland, she holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Communications from Millersville University in Pennsylvania, a Master of Arts in English Education from Gardner-Webb University, and a Doctor of Education degree in Adult and Community College Education from North Carolina State University.

In 2011, Dr. Kennedy was honored with the Athena Award, which recognizes women for leadership and community service. She has also received both the H. Eugene LeGrand Lifetime Achievement Award and the JT Scruggs Volunteer of the Year Award from the United Way; she received the Distinguished Woman Award from the Cleveland County Commission for Women; and, the Distinguished Rotarian Award.

Dr. Kennedy is married to Larry and they have three sons. She is the quintessential soccer mom, as all three children have played competitive soccer requiring travel all over the Southeast. Her two oldest sons, now adults, played Division I college soccer. Dr. Kennedy was also a college athlete, playing lacrosse for the Millersville Lady Marauders. When not traveling with children, she enjoys cooking, reading, and outdoor activities.

Shannon Kennedy’s Leadership Philosophy Statement

My leadership philosophy most closely aligns with the definition of servant leadership. According to Greenleaf, “A servant-leader focuses primarily on the growth and well-being of people and the communities to which they belong. While traditional leadership generally involves the accumulation and exercise of power by one at the ‘top of the pyramid,’ servant leadership is different. The servant-leader shares power, puts the needs of others first and helps people develop and perform as highly as possible.”

I believe it is the responsibility of the community college president to empower others and give them the tools they need to succeed. I understand the power of listening, thoughtfully considering ideas, and compromising. While I can be decisive when necessary, I like to take the time to reflect on the consequences of a decision thoroughly before moving forward. Decisions should be made with input from those that are impacted, when this is feasible. I believe in working closely with the local school system, other higher education institutions, and industry in order to create and grow programs. Outside funding from granting agencies and private gifts from donors are critically important to sustain and grow. I have significant fundraising experience and I believe that the president should be actively involved in fundraising for the college.

I believe that communication is critical for any leader. Individuals may not like a decision that has been made, but if the individual understands why the decision was made, he or she may more quickly accept it.

Community colleges are the most nimble higher education institutions and can adapt to the community’s needs. In order to meet the ever-changing needs of the community and business and industry, the community college must be ready to adapt and change.

Finally, I wholeheartedly agree with Harry S Truman when he said, “It is amazing what you can accomplish when you do not care who gets the credit.” Those who accomplish great things should be recognized and a good leader gives the credit to the team. Building a solid team is extremely important.

Dr. Glenda Haynie serves RCC as its Dean of Research, Effectiveness, and Planning and has since July 2011.Dr. Haynie holds the degrees of bachelor of arts in mathematics from Lynchburg College and master of arts in mathematics from Penn State University, in addition to her doctorate, in mathematics education with a minor in statistics, from North Carolina State University.

As well as teaching math at the high school and college level for almost four decades, she has attained National Board Certification in adolescent and young adult mathematics, and has most recently been employed as senior administrator in the evaluation and research department of Wake County Public Schools in Raleigh, North Carolina (the largest school system in its state). A native Virginian, Haynie was born and raised in the Shenandoah Valley, near Staunton.

The Haynies have two grown children, a son and a daughter, both college graduates in math-related fields. In her spare time, Dr. Haynie enjoys needlework, reading, and traveling.

Sarah Pope serves as the Vice President of College Advancement and leads the efforts of the RCC Educational Foundation. She holds a bachelor of arts in art history from the College of William & Mary, a master of historic preservation from the University of Georgia, and a graduate certificate in nonprofit management from George Mason University.

Sarah has 25 years of experience in non-profit board development, strategic planning, educational programming, and annual fund and capital campaign development.  She has worked for national, state, and local institutions that focus on community planning and heritage education, including the National Trust for Historic Preservation, the National Park Service, and the Virginia Main Street Program. Before coming to the College in 2015, Sarah served as the executive director of the Menokin Foundation in Warsaw and developed preservation trades and continuing teacher education classes in partnership with RCC’s Workforce Development unit.

A Middle Peninsula native, Sarah lives in Essex County with her son, daughter, and husband Nathan. She is honored to have the opportunity to make a difference in her community by helping residents access high-quality educational experiences at RCC, preparing them for success as learners, employees, and citizens of the 21st century.

Caroline Stelter serves Rappahannock Community College as the Director of the Human Resources Department, a role that she has filled since January of 2005. In her position, Caroline reports directly to the president and is responsible for implementing policies and procedures for faculty and staff, as well as providing strategic direction and consultation to administrative, professional, teaching faculty, support staff, retirees, and internal and external departmental customers.

Prior to this position, Caroline served Bon Secours Health System in Richmond, Va. from 1998 to 2004.

Caroline earned her BA from the University of Virginia, and her MS from Western Governors University. Caroline is certified both as a Professional in Human Resources (PHR) from the Human Resources Certification Institute and a Certified Professional (SHRM-CP) by the Society of Human Resources Management (SHRM).

She enjoys watching football, biking, the beach and spending time with her family.

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