Deidra “Dee Dee” Peaslee, EdD, president at Saint Paul College, is one of 26 leaders selected for the 2022-23 class of the Aspen New Presidents Fellowship. This program supports community college presidents in the early years of their tenure as they work to achieve higher and more equitable levels of student success.
This class of fellows represents the diversity of the nation’s community colleges, collectively serving over 250,000 students at colleges across the nation, in urban, suburban, and rural areas. The incoming class of New Presidents Fellows is 46 percent female and 65 percent are people of color. Located in 19 states, their institutions too are diverse, from a tribal college with fewer than 300 students to an urban college that educates more than 35,000 each year.
“I am excited to collaborate with the Aspen Institute and community college leaders from across the country in identifying and implementing strategies to create and sustain learning environments that support all students in succeeding,” said Peaslee. “This work is critical to Saint Paul College as we launch a new strategic plan informed by our new mission statement, “Grounded in equity and inclusion, Saint Paul College educates and empowers students to lead purposeful lives and discover rewarding careers.”
Peaslee is a collaborative, inclusive leader with a 30-year career of empowering students and inspiring educators. She has been the president of Saint Paul College since July 2019, and is the first woman president in the College’s 112-year history.
Under her leadership, Saint Paul College was fully reaccredited by the Higher Learning Commission; has committed to becoming an anti-racist and trauma-informed; and has redeveloped its mission, vision, and values to reflect its student-ready-campus culture and foundation in social justice.
Prior to Saint Paul College, Peaslee served at Anoka-Ramsey Community College for 17 years. In addition to her experience in the Minnesota state system, she was the assistant dean for the Kellstadt Graduate School of Business at DePaul University; a career planning specialist for ACT, Inc, and the interim placement director for South Dakota State University. Peaslee and her husband, Rich, have two daughters, Emerson (21) and Paige (18).
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