Goddard College Appoints New Board Chair

Plainfield, Vt. ‐‐‐ Goddard College announced today the appointment of Andrea Leebron‐Clay as the new chair of the board of trustees, and the addition of three new members to the board. Leebron‐Clay succeeds Stephen B. Friedman, who served as chair of the board since October of 2010, and as a board member since 2000.

“This an exciting time for Goddard College and we are fortunate to have had strong leadership under Stephen, and now into the future under Andy,’’ Goddard President Barbara Vacarr said. “I know I speak for the college when I thank Stephen for his many years of devoted service to Goddard.”

Leebron‐Clay is currently vice president and partner at Regency Pacific Inc., which provides senior residential services in five states. She has implemented innovative programs focused on physical and cognitive rehabilitation, including participation with the National Institutes of Health in programs for prevention and treatment of incontinence. Leebron‐Clay obtained an MFA in creative writing and an MA in sustainable community development from Goddard College.

Vacarr said she looks forward to working with Leebron‐Clay. “As Goddard continues to grow, Andy brings an excitement and expertise that will help Goddard become a model for other progressive institutions,’’ Vacarr said. “She is a visionary who will help us secure an innovative vision for the college.” Leebron‐Clay said she looks forward to “upholding the standard of those who have come before us.” “We will also need to rededicate ourselves to the discovery of what makes Goddard an excellent investment in times when investment of students’ time and money requires more sacrifice than it has since our shift to distance learning,’’ she said.

Vacarr also welcomed three new trustees, whose terms run through 2014.

“These three individuals have varied professional experiences, but share a commitment to lifelong learning,” Vacarr said. “Their expertise and passion for nontraditional study and professional development will greatly enhance the educational environment at Goddard.”

Mario Borunda serves on the faculty of Lesley University in Cambridge, Mass., and was appointed to the Massachusetts Board of Higher Education by Governor Deval Patrick in 2008. As Dean of Lesley’s School of Education, Borunda oversaw the largest expansion in the school’s history. He previously worked with schools and nonprofit school reform organizations as vice president of the executive search firm Isaacson, Miller. He has also served as Dean of the Graduate School of Wheelock College in Boston. Borunda earned an Ed.D. from Harvard University.

Hubert “Tino” O’Brien retired after 30 years in management and organizational development. As senior consultant at the Brimstone Consulting Group, he trained managers and executives for a wide range of international clients, including Ford Motor Co., Pfizer Pharmaceuticals, and Royal Dutch Shell. Previously, he served as manager of human resources for Ben & Jerry’s Homemade, Inc. He has also taught and consulted with schools, nonprofits, and small businesses in New England. He has a B.A. from Princeton University, and an M.Ed. from the University of Massachusetts. He lives in Montpelier, Vermont.

Jane Vella is an educator, author, and developer of the theory and practice of Dialogue Education. Much of her research was conducted in rural communities in Tanzania, where she also served as a professor at the Institute of Education of the University of Dar es Salaam. In 1981, after teaching at the North Carolina State University School of Education and University of North Carolina School of Public Health, Vella started Jubilee Popular Education Center, now known as Global Learning Partners, Inc. She has also worked as director of training for Save the Children and as an education specialist at Bread for the World in Washington, D.C. She has published eight books and has two more in progress. Vella has an M.A. from Fordham University and an Ed.D. from the University of Massachusetts. She lives in Raleigh, North Carolina.


Goddard College was chartered in 1938 at its Plainfield, Vermont campus by founding President Royce “Tim” Pitkin. In 1963, Goddard became the first U.S. college to offer adult‐degree programs, and now specializes in MA, MFA, BA and BFA low‐residency education. Offering accredited degree programs from campuses in Plainfield, Vermont and Port Townsend, Washington, Goddard’s low‐residency format offers the best of on‐ campus and distance education, with experienced faculty advisors, rigorous on‐campus residencies, and the freedom to study from anywhere.

Important Announcement

The Board of Directors for Goddard College have made the difficult decision to close the college at the end of the 2024 Spring term.  


Current Goddard students will have the opportunity to complete their degrees at the same tuition rate through a teach-out with like-minded institution, Prescott College. Updates and scholarship funds will be available in the coming weeks and months. Information will be posted to www.goddard.edu

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