By Thomas Garcia
QCS Senior Writer
More than 100 residents along with the Mesalands Community College board, staff and students were on hand Thursday to welcome Thomas Newsom and his family to the community and usher in his first day as the institution’s president.
“To be honest I wasn’t ready to make a comment or a speech,” Newsom said. “I wanted this day to be less about me and more about the college turning the page and taking steps forward.”
Newsom met with residents and local leaders during the two-hour reception held in his honor at the Great Room in Mesalands’ main building. He said he it was a honor to have such a welcome for him and his family and he was thrilled at the chance to meet so many people interested in the institution’s success.
“I see big things in store for Mesalands and the community,” Newsom said. “I will measure my success will by how successful we can make Mesalands together.”
Newsom said he is anxious to begin his duties at Mesalands and wants to build on the strengths he has seen at Mesalands to ensure the individual success of each and every student. He said he would do his best to make sure that the staff and faculty have the right tools available to ensure all of their students’ success and put them first.
Newsom was selected during a special Mesalands board meeting on July 11, during which board members also signed Newsom’s two-year, $156,000-a-year contract.
“A lot of work went into this and we took into consideration all of the concerns from the presidential screening committee and public forums to get us to this point,” said J. Bronson Moore, trustee chair.
“We are excited to have Thomas Newsom as our president and look forward to working with him as the college moves forward,” Moore said.
“This was an endeavor, one which we are all happy has come to an end,” said Jim Streetman, board of trustees secretary and chair of the presidential search committee. “I hope he is our president for many years to come.”