Kilchenstein Stepping Down as NHTI Leader
10-year administration as president included historic growth at State’s largest community college
CONCORD—NHTI President Lynn Tolbert Kilchenstein has announced that she will step down from her position at the end of the calendar year.
Kilchenstein has been associated with NHTI, Concord’s Community College since 1986, first as a teacher, the English Department Head, faculty president, and then associate vice president of academic affairs, before taking on the presidency in 2003. During her 10-year tenure, Kilchenstein has overseen historic growth at New Hampshire’s largest community college.
Among the developments at NHTI during her presidency was the completion of a three-phase expansion and upgrade of facilities for the College’s hallmark allied health programs. The College doubled the size and enrollment of its Dental Auxiliaries program with the addition of a new wing to MacRury Hall in 2009; the College opened the LEED silver-certified Beverly D. Grappone Hall, a state-of-the-art nursing education facility, in 2009; and the College completed renovation of MacRury Hall in 2010, adding state-of-the-art labs for its Diagnostic Medical Imaging, Paramedic Emergency Medicine and Natural Sciences programs.
Under Kilchenstein’s leadership the College experienced dramatic growth in its student population from 5,240 students in the 2003-4 academic year to a peak of 6,685 students served in 2010-11, a 27.5% increase. She guided the College, known locally and affectionately as “The Tech,” through a successful rebranding in 2007. Reflecting the evolution of the College to a comprehensive community college offering degree programs in a broad spectrum of technical, career and liberal arts fields, the College changed its name from “New Hampshire Technical Institute” to “NHTI, Concord’s Community College.
Known on campus for her pleasant demeanor, open-door policy and collaborative leadership style, Kilchenstein established a reputation for ensuring student needs. She nurtured a sense of community that encouraged growth, innovation and a personal approach to student learning and service.
“It is time for me to explore some of my other interests and to participate more fully in family matters,” says Kilchenstein. “It’s an appropriate time to move on as the College enjoys numerous talented and emerging leaders; a highly creative community of teachers and staff; a relevant and rigorous academic curricula; solid enrollment and a well-deserved reputation for excellence.”
Paul Holloway, chairman of the CCSNH board of trustees, said, “We are grateful to Lynn for her many years of service and leadership at NHTI, and for the important role she has played in advancing the mission of the Community College System of New Hampshire. She has been a passionate and eloquent advocate about the vital role the community colleges play in our society, for students, their families and communities. During her tenure as president, NHTI became an integral part of its community and served tens of thousands of students who become the economic and civic lifeblood of our State as a result of the opportunities they pursued at the college. We will miss Lynn as a colleague and as a champion for NHTI, and wish her well in the next phase of her life.”
The CCSNH board of trustees is responsible for developing a plan to recruit the next president of NHTI. An interim appointment will be made while a search is underway.
In 2011, Kilchenstein received the Pinnacle Award for Business Leader of the Year from the Greater Concord Area Chamber of Commerce.
As President, Lynn Kilchenstein also led the College through a successful NEAS&C Commission on Institutions of Higher Education (CIHE) reaccreditation. With an environment of encouragement and innovation, NHTI has continued to maintain excellence with solid, rigorous programs in engineering technologies and health, while expanding new liberal arts offerings, such as Visual Arts, with hybrid engineering programs such as Animation and Graphic Game Programming, and with innovative teacher education conversion programs for post-baccalaureate adults.
Kilchenstein served for eight years on the Greater Concord Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors, was a founding member of the Red River Theatres Board, was a founding member and original Co-Chair of the Somewhat North of Boston (SNOB) Film Festival, and served on the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC) Commission on Academic, Student, and Community Development. She currently serves on the Governor’s Advanced Manufacturing and Education Advisory Council, Capitol Center for the Arts Board, on the Creative Concord Committee, and on the Concord Housing Commission.
Kilchenstein is originally from Delaware, where she continues to visit family, and began her career in education teaching writing and literature courses for more than 20 years. She taught at the University of Texas at El Paso, Delaware Technical and Community College, and Wor-Wic Community College before coming to NHTI 27 years ago.