2017 eCommencement Address Writer
Dr. Thom D. Chesney
Dr. Thom Chesney is the president of Brookhaven College in Farmers Branch, Texas, one of seven colleges of the Dallas County Community College District (DCCCD), and former associate provost of the University of Texas at Dallas. Formerly, he was district dean of communications and humanities at Collin College before becoming provost and vice president of academic affairs at the Plano, Texas-based institution.
In his multiple roles in academia, Dr. Chesney has provided vision and key leadership with emphases on student and employee success, institutional effectiveness, and community engagement. Additionally, he has served on the Brookhaven Provost’s Leadership Team, where he was responsible for developing and implementing campus-wide student success initiatives and quality enhancement plans across various departments. As an educator, Dr. Chesney served as assistant professor of English at Texas Wesleyan University, visiting assistant professor at East Tennessee State University and Whitman College, and full-time instructor at Florida State University.
Dr. Chesney earned his Ph.D. in English Literature at Florida State University in Tallahassee, his master’s in English–Creative Writing at Minnesota State University in Mankato, and completed his undergraduate studies in Spanish at Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri. He has developed and presented multiple presentations on topics ranging from ethics and integrity in university leadership to English literature to managing academic institutions under various financial circumstances.
He is a member of multiple groups and organizations, including the American Council on Education, the Farmers Branch Chamber of Commerce, the McKinney Chamber of Commerce, the Northern Collin County Leadership Program, and more. Additionally, he was twice-awarded the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board Star Award, as well as named one of the 21 Leaders for the 21st Century by the Collin County Business Journal, among numerous other distinctions.