The Community College System of New Hampshire (CCSNH) is pleased to announce the appointment of Patrick Cate, of Campton, New Hampshire, as President of Lakes Region Community College in Laconia, and Sarmad Saman of Marlborough, Massachusetts, as President of White Mountains Community College with campuses in Berlin and Littleton.

“One of the unique strengths of community colleges, so much so that it is embedded in the name, is the role our colleges play in the communities that we serve through the strong connections that are built between our colleges and their regional partners and stakeholders,” said Dr. Mark Rubinstein, CCSNH Chancellor. “The only way to do that right is to have campus leaders working closely with local leaders so that our students can contribute to the economic, civic, and cultural vitality of their communities and help New Hampshire achieve a competitive edge with a highly skilled workforce that is prepared for the future. I am very pleased that we have identified two outstanding candidates for college leadership whose demonstrated commitment to the students we serve will benefit our communities our statewide efforts across New Hampshire.”

Patrick Cate
Patrick Cate has served as the interim President of LRCC since July of 2022 and brings a wealth of experience in higher education and student success. He has been with LRCC since 2018, serving as Associate Vice President and Vice President of Academic and Student Affairs prior to being selected as interim President.

Cate has over 20 years of experience in Higher Education, including roles at Walnut Hill College in Philadelphia, Rivier University in Nashua, N.H., and 17 years with Plymouth State University. Cate started his tenure at PSU as a Residence Hall Director, and progressed to the position of Dean of Student Success,  while also teaching undergraduate and graduate courses. Throughout his career, Cate’s passion for education and commitment to student success have been evident, making him a fitting choice to continue to lead LRCC into its next chapter.

Recent highlights of Cate’s tenure as interim president include reinvesting in key academic programs which garnered national recognition. Under Cate’s leadership, LRCC raised funds for and launched a Fire Fighter Paramedic program, with the first graduating class achieving a 100 percent pass rate for the national paramedic exam. The college’s renowned culinary program grew in enrollment and quality and was chosen to represent the state in Washington, D.C. at New Hampshire Day, providing an opportunity for students and faculty to showcase their talents to the US Senate and staff.

In response to his appointment, Cate expressed enthusiasm about the opportunity, stating: “I am honored and excited to continue to lead Lakes Region Community College as its President. LRCC has developed a strong reputation for excellence in high quality educational opportunities that are affordable for all. With our special commitment to the Lakes Region and Central New Hampshire, we are excited to be a part of a community on the rise. I look forward to working collaboratively with faculty, staff, students, and the community to further enhance our offerings and impact.”

Cate holds degrees from Keene State College and Plymouth State University and has extensive publication and presentation experience, as well as research and consulting in the academic and career counseling fields.

Sarmad Saman
Sarmad Saman is a seasoned higher education leader with more than two decades of experience in teaching and administration. He is bilingual in English and Arabic and has studied and worked in four countries – his native Iraq, the United Kingdom, Jordan and, since 1999, the United States. Saman became a US Citizen in 2019. 

Saman studied and conducted research in microbiology before transitioning to faculty and administrative positions within the Massachusetts public school system and then higher education. In 1999, he began teaching biological sciences, first at the Chelsea, Massachusetts public schools and then at Boston University before transitioning to community college teaching and administration. Since 2000, Saman taught in the science departments at Quinsigamond Community College (Worcester, Mass.), MassBay Community College (Wellesley Hills, Mass.) and Bristol Community College (Fall River, Mass.). 

Saman completed the Community College Leadership Academy in 2014. He holds the academic rank of Professor in Microbiology and most recently served as Chief of Staff and Deputy Academic Officer at Bristol Community College. Saman also served at Bristol as Dean of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM), Acting Dean for Online Learning, and Interim Dean for Behavioral, Social Science and Education. At MassBay Community College, in addition fulfilling the primary responsibilities as Professor of Microbiology and Chair of the Life Sciences Department, Saman held appointments as Interim Dean of STEM.  

Saman has extensive experience in grant writing and management, including a $4.4 million grant from the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center to Bristol Community College to build a Clean Room (spaces typically used in manufacturing to ensure a low level of pollutants). He was honored by the Massachusetts Medical Research Society for his leadership in building new programs that develop the skills of today’s students for the industries of tomorrow. 

Saman has received awards from The League for Innovation in the Community College for Excellence and for Innovation on Corequisite Models of Developmental Math Education. 

“It is my pleasure and privilege to be the next President of WMCC,” said Saman. “I will be honored to work with such dedicated faculty and staff to serve our students so they can achieve their goals and soar as high as the White Mountains. I am determined and confident that the foundations that have been set at WMCC by those who came before me will enable me to ensure that we meet our objectives and guide our communities to a brighter future.”

About LRCC:  Located minutes off Route 93 in Laconia, Lakes Region Community College offers more than 40 educational programs, as well as workforce training for business and industry. Transfer agreements with regional four-year colleges allow students to receive their associate degree at an affordable community college, and earn a Bachelor’s at a four-year school. Lakes Region Community College offers on-campus housing and is part of the Community College System of New Hampshire. To learn more, visit

About WMCC:  White Mountains Community College (WMCC) is located in Berlin, New Hampshire with a satellite campus in Littleton, and is one of seven colleges in the Community College System of New Hampshire. WMCC offers associate degree and certificate programs, plus training options, preparing students for 21st century job opportunities as well as transfer pathways to four-year colleges and universities. WMCC is fully accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE). Courses within WMCC and the Community College System are the most affordable in New Hampshire and the Littleton Academic Center increases access to all students in the North Country Region. Courses are available day, evening and online. WMCC courses transfer to four-year colleges and universities in New Hampshire and across the country.


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