Owens Community College Board of Trustees Selects Dr. Dione Somerville as Eighth President
PERRYSBURG TOWNSHIP, Ohio, May 5, 2021 – Following a five-month nationally advertised search by AGB search, the board of trustees for Owens Community College has named Dr. Dione Somerville the institution’s new president. The appointment was announced following today’s board meeting. Her start date is scheduled for June 15.
“It is with great pleasure that we welcome Dr. Dione Somerville to Owens Community College as its 8th president,” stated Mary Beth Hammond, chair, Owens Board of Trustees. “We look forward to Dr. Somerville’s involvement with our students, faculty, staff, community, and Board of Trustees. The Board is confident that with her leadership, the College will continue to grow and thrive in Northwest Ohio as a strong community partner while helping our students be prepared for successful and rewarding careers in the surrounding communities.”
Dr. Somerville began her 27-year career in higher education as the assistant director, Campus Programming at Ursuline College, Pepper Pike, Ohio, before taking leadership positions at Ohio College of Podiatric Medicine, Lorain County Community College, Iowa State University, Bloomsburg University and Hawkeye Community College.
Her most recent position was as executive vice president at Hawkeye Community College. Among her accomplishments, she leads the college’s COVID-19 response, including helping provide leadership to Academic Affairs during the six-month vacancy of the provost position. Responsibilities also include leading enrollment efforts, diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts, strategic planning, and creating a Division of Student Affairs. Prior to Hawkeye, Dr. Somerville was vice president for student affairs at Bloomsburg University. In this position, she provided leadership for Bloomsburg’s regional accreditation and the creation of the university’s first Division of Strategic Enrollment Management. She envisioned the student wellness initiative, focusing on mental health and dependency on alcohol and other drugs. Dr. Somerville provided leadership to create the Center for Leadership and Engagement, Center for Diversity and Inclusion, modernize Greek Life, expand intercollegiate athletics, facilitate assessment, and complete fundraising efforts. Dr. Somerville oversaw the University Master Plan process, the revitalization of university housing, and the completion of Soltz Hall, a $61.4 million multi-function building inclusive of the mailroom, bookstore, integrative learning, two dining venues, and nearly 400 suite-style beds.
“I am truly honored and humbled to be selected as president of Owens Community College,” said Dr. Somerville. “I value Owens’ legacy as an institution that creates opportunity for its students and greater community and will strive to further that tradition. I look forward to working in partnership with the students, faculty, staff, Board of Trustees, and the community to continue Owens’ forward momentum.”
Dr. Somerville earned a doctorate in Higher Education Management from the University of Pennsylvania, a master’s degree in College Student Personnel from Bowling Green State University, and a bachelor’s degree in English/Writing from Ohio Northern University. She was a Fellow at the Association of Governing Boards Institute for Leadership and Governance in its inaugural year. She also participated in the Harvard University Institute for Education Management and the American Association of State Colleges and Universities Millennium Leadership Institute.
She has been very active in her local community, having served on the Geisinger Bloomsburg Hospital Community Advisory Board, the City of Ames Student Affairs Commission, and Ames Police Community Relations Advisory Committee.
Dr. Somerville in the News
May 9, 2021 – Leading Edge with Jerry Anderson
May 6, 2021 – Community College Daily: Newsmakers
May 6, 2021 – Owens Community College Names New President
May 6, 2021 – Owens names new president
May 5, 2021 – Owens Community College selects new president
May 5, 2021 – Owens Community College Names New President