Presidential finalists announced

The Green River College Board of Trustees recently announced the four finalists selected in the search for the college’s next president. The candidates will visit campus beginning April 10, 2017.

Following a national recruitment process, the search committee forwarded the four finalists to the Green River College Board of Trustees for consideration. The successful candidate will replace Interim President Scott Morgan, and is expected to begin their duties this summer.

The finalists:

Utpal K. Goswami, Ph.D.
Utpal K. Goswami
  • Utpal K. Goswami, Ph.D. currently serves as president of Metropolitan Community College- Maple Woods, in Kansas City, MO. Dr. Goswami has more than 33 years of higher education experience, divided between classroom and administration at colleges and universities in Arizona, California, Missouri and Texas. He is experienced in advocating for community college funding, fostering shared governance, enhancing student success, programming for workforce development, launching and completing capital projects, and revamping and integrating technology platforms. Goswami is actively involved in statewide and local community organizations related to education, community service and economic development.

    Suzanne M. Johnson, Ph.D.
    Suzanne M. Johnson
  • Suzanne M. Johnson, Ph.D. is the current Vice President of Academic Affairs at Suffolk County Community College in Long Island, NY. Dr. Johnson began her career in higher education in 1988 as a psychology instructor at Dowling College, and moved through the ranks to become the Dean of the College in 2012. Johnson also served as the Interim Campus President of the Sylvania Campus of Portland Community College in Portland, OR. Johnson has been instrumental in accreditation reviews, providing leadership over both instruction and student affairs, as well as having a deep commitment to the community college mission.

    Kenneth G. Lawson, Ph.D.
    Kenneth G. Lawson
  • Kenneth G. Lawson, Ph.D. is currently the Vice President for Instruction at Skagit Valley College in Mount Vernon, WA. He has a doctorate in Political Science from the University of Washington.  Dr. Lawson served as Dean of Humanities and Social Sciences at Seattle Central College and Dean of Equity and Social Justice/Social Sciences at Shoreline Community College.  Dr. Lawson started teaching International Studies and Political Science at Shoreline in 2001. He has a passion for teaching and learning, and he is committed to ensuring underserved students have an equitable opportunity to succeed.

    Dr. Elliot Stern
    Elliot Stern
  • Dr. Elliot Stern serves as the Vice President of Instruction at Lake Washington Institute of Technology in Kirkland, WA. Prior to his career in higher education, Dr. Stern earned both a Juris Doctor and Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine, and had a successful career as a physician-attorney and medical malpractice litigator. Stern changed career paths in 2003, and joined the ranks of Biology faculty at Everett Community College, where he later became Dean of Allied Health. Stern also served as the Dean of S.T.E.M. at Edmonds Community College.

The 12-member presidential search committee is comprised of representatives from Green River’s board of trustees, faculty, students, staff, as well as members of the community.

For additional information on the search, including candidate bios, vitae and visit schedules, go to

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.