Past, present Northeast State student leaders wish Dr. Gilliam well in retirement

BLOUNTVILLE, TN (WJHL) – After the recent announcement of Northeast State College’s President Doctor Janice Gilliam’s retirement, the college is now preparing for changes.

Dr. Gilliam announced her retirement Thursday night, it comes after she received a vote of “no confidence” by a majority of the school’s faculty senate. That means faculty members were not confident in her ability to lead.

The vote sparked an investigation by the Tennessee Board of Regents.  The school is now working to find her replacement after she’s been Northeast State’s president for the past eight years.

News Channel 11’s Justin Soto spoke with current and former student representative who both say they wish Gilliam well.

“Given everything that’s gone on I think it’s good to have a fresh start. Given the no confidence vote and things similar, there was a lot of division at the college,” Seth Manning, former SGA President.

In January a majority of the faculty senate voted they weren’t confident in Gilliam’s leadership, over concerns like recent layoffs and class scheduling.

“When the faculty made their voices heard on that issue I think that there had to be some sort of action,” Manning said.

Gilliam said in the letter that this decision was the right time for her personally and professionally.

The Tennessee Board of Regents plans to bring in TBR Executive Vice Chancellor James King in as interim president until a national search for a permanent president begins.

A transition that current SGA member, Abbie Saulsbury said she’s excited to see.

“I’ve never doubted the administration the staff and the faculty and their dedication to the students. The dedication I’ve seen displayed I think that is the base we have and because of that we’re going to be fine and I’m excited to work with everyone and go through this together,” Saulsbury said.

Both former and current student leaders wished Dr. Gilliam nothing but the best in her retirement as the college enters a new chapter in its 50-year history.

Gilliam will retire at the end of this month. No word yet on when King will arrive on campus.

Copyright 2017 WJHL. All rights reserved.

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