NACAC Selects Committee to Lead Executive Search

Media Contact:
Shanda Ivory


Arlington, VA (June 27, 2019) — The Board of Directors for the National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC) has named a 15-person committee to lead the search for the organization’s next chief executive officer.

The successful candidate will replace current CEO Joyce E. Smith, who will retire in summer 2020 after 30 years of service to the association and 44 years in the college admission profession.

The search committee, comprised of a diverse group of association members and stakeholders, is chaired by NACAC President-elect Jayne Fonash and assisted in its work by the executive search firm Russell Reynolds.  

“Joyce’s strong leadership and commitment to higher education opportunity have guided NACAC through a period of significant growth and change.” Fonash said. “Her retirement marks a time of transition for NACAC, making the work of this committee vitally important.””

Committee members hail from across the globe and represent all facets of the college admission landscape, including secondary schools, postsecondary institutions, community-based organizations, educational associations, independent counselors, and international schools.

“NACAC’s Board of Directors wanted to ensure a diverse group of individuals were involved in the critical work of selecting our association’s next CEO,” Fonash said. “We couldn’t be more pleased with the wide range of individuals who have agreed to help us select a leader who will maintain NACAC's long-held commitment to ethical college admission while taking the organization to new heights.”

Committee members include:

  • Committee Chair Jayne Fonash, NACAC president-elect, independent education consultant (VA)

  • Larry Griffith, Gates Millennium Scholars Program – UNCF (DC)
  • Taaha Mohamedali, The Academy Group (IL)
  • Gilbert Becerra, Palo Alto Community Colleges (TX)
  • Grace Cheng Dodge, Taipei International School (Taiwan)
  • Mark Steinlage, NACAC Presidents Council coordinator, St. Louis University (MO)
  • Beverly Henry Wheeler, Hendrix College (AR)
  • Kent Rinehart, Marist College (NY)
  • Elise Rodriguez, NACAC board director, The Dalton School (NY)
  • Lauren Cook, Jewish Community High School of the Bay (CA)
  • Ramon Blakley, NACAC board director, University of Texas – Austin
  • Adele Brumfield, University of California – San Diego
  • Joel Ford, Conner High School (KY)
  • Aliza Gilbert, Highland Park High School (IL)
  • Wendy Lucio, NACAC director of finance and administration (VA)

Learn more about NACAC’s CEO search.

About NACAC 

The National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC), founded in 1937, is an organization of more than 15,000 professionals from around the world dedicated to serving students as they make choices about pursuing postsecondary education. NACAC is committed to maintaining high standards that foster ethical and social responsibility among those involved in the transition process, as outlined in the association's Code of Ethics and Professional Practices.

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