Ge­or­gia Pied­mont’s new pres­i­dent ar­rives on cam­pus

The Covington News - - The Second Front - STAFF RE­PORTS news@cov­

Dr. Jabari Si­mama, the new pres­i­dent of Ge­or­gia Pied­mont Tech­ni­cal Col­lege, ar­rived on cam­pus for his of­fi­cial first day of work re­cently.

Si­mama be­gan his new jour­ney at GPTC by hav­ing a meet­ing with his ex­ec­u­tive cab­i­net and then a “meet and greet” with GPTC fac­ulty and staff. Re­cep­tions were held at three of the school’s nine lo­ca­tions — the DeKalb Cam­pus in Clark­ston, and the New­ton Cam­pus-Build­ing A and New­ton Cam­pus-Build­ing D in Cov­ing­ton.

The state board that over­sees the Tech­ni­cal Col­lege Sys­tem of Ge­or­gia ap­proved Si­mama as the third pres­i­dent of the Col­lege on Aug. 2, at the rec­om­men­da­tion of TCSG Com­mis­sioner Ron Jack­son.

His ap­point­ment was ef­fec­tive Sept. 1. Si­mama fills the va­cancy left af­ter the re­tire­ment of for­mer pres­i­dent Dr. Robin Hoffman in July 2011. In his ad­dress to more than 150 em­ploy­ees, he thanked Larry Teems who has served as act­ing pres­i­dent for the past 13 months.

Prior to join­ing Ge­or­gia Pied­mont, Si­mama was the chief of staff for DeKalb County CEO Bur­rell El­lis since 2010. He was the chief pol­icy ad­vi­sor and se­nior of­fi­cer in the ex­ec­u­tive of­fice that serves 740,000 county res­i­dents and man­ages a $1.5 bil­lion bud­get and 7,000 em­ploy­ees. He was the county’s deputy chief oper­at­ing of­fi­cer of de­vel­op­ment from 2009 to 2010.

Si­mama was the vice pres­i­dent for community de­vel­op­ment and ex­ter­nal re­la­tions at Bene­dict Col­lege in Columbia, S.C., from 2005 to 2009. Be­fore that, he was the ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor of community tech­nol­ogy for the city of At­lanta from 2000 to 2005. He served as the city of At­lanta’s chief of the of­fice of mar­ket­ing and com­mu­ni­ca­tions from 1998 to 2000.

His ca­reer in higher ed­u­ca­tion in­cludes teach­ing po­si­tions at the Ge­or­gia Tech, Clark At­lanta Univer­sity, Mor­gan State Univer­sity, Univer­sity of Cincin­nati, and At­lanta Ju­nior Col­lege (now At­lanta Metropoli­tan Col­lege).

Si­mama held elected of­fice as a mem­ber of the At­lanta City Coun­cil from 1987 to 1993. He also served as an ap­pointed mem­ber of the Metropoli­tan At­lanta Olympic Games Author­ity, which pro­vided fi­nan­cial over­sight for the At­lanta Olympic Games Com­mit­tee’s $2 bil­lion bud­get.

Si­mama has a Ph.D. in Amer­i­can stud­ies from Emory Univer­sity. He earned his mas­ter’s from At­lanta (now Clark At­lanta) Univer­sity and his bach­e­lor’s from the Univer­sity of Bridge­port.

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