Board of Trustees

The Excelsior College Board of Trustees is the governing body for the College. The board comprises individuals from across the United States who are prominent in the fields of business, education, government, and the professions.

  • Helen Benjamin (Chair) is the Chair of Excelsior College’s Board of Trustees. She was chancellor of the Contra Costa Community College District from 2005 until her retirement in December 2016. She began her career at the District in 1990 when she joined Los Medanos College as dean of language arts and humanistic studies and related occupations.


  • Mary O’Connor (Vice Chair) is the Vice Chair of Excelsior’s Board of Trustees and an associate professor of nursing at Notre Dame of Maryland University where she teaches RN to BSN and MSN courses.


  • Don Dea (Treasurer), is the Treasurer of Excelsior’s Board of Trustees. A recognized authority on the Internet, association and nonprofit organizations, online education, mobile, and technology deployment, Don Dea is the cofounder of Fusion Productions.


  • Pamela J. Tate (Secretary), is the Secretary of Excelsior’s Board of Trustees. Since becoming president and CEO of CAEL in 1990, she has become recognized for her work within the higher education, public, and private sectors to make it easier for adults to get the education and training they need to succeed and to remain employable.


  • Dr. Terry Conry joined Excelsior College in 2010 as part-time teaching faculty and course designer. He serves on the School of Business & Technology’s Faculty Advisory Committee and the IACBE Accreditation Committee.


  • William G. Harris serves as the CEO of the Association of Test Publishers (ATP), the leading international organization for publishers of assessment programs.


  • Debbie Hatmaker is the executive director of the American Nurses Association (ANA). As executive director, she leads the implementation of ANA’s strategy and its plan to advance the association’s comprehensive policy, advocacy, and national communications agenda.


  • Garry W. Jaunal is a partner at Baker & McKenzie, where he is a member of the global private equity practice and the banking and finance practice.


  • Matt Loeb, CGEIT, CAE, FASAE, is the CEO of ISACA, a nonprofit, global association focused on governance of enterprise technology.


  • Michael J. Loughran is president of the Healthcare Division of Aon’s Affinity Insurance Services Inc., where he is responsible for all client segments, including medical doctors, dentists, allied health care professionals, health care facilities, and firms.


  • KH Maman has more than 25 years of experience in the field of information systems security, telecommunications, systems design and integration, network consulting, PCI credit card security, breach investigation, business continuity planning and disaster recovery, and more.


  • A. Frank Mayadas spent 29 years at IBM during which he headed IBM’s West Coast research operation and served a term as secretary of the IBM Corporation Management Board, working directly with the chairman, CFO, and president on matters of corporate strategy and management.


  • Karim Merchant is the director of development and volunteer engagement at the Aga Khan Foundation (AKF), U.S.A., a private, not-for-profit international development organization.


  • Jerry Neff (ARNGUS, Ret.) enlisted in the Illinois Army National Guard in May 1960, at the age of 18, and soon after also set off on a banking career.


  • David W. Oliker, former president and CEO of MVP Health Care, led MVP since its inception in 1982 until his retirement in 2013.


  • Rose Wang is a serial entrepreneur. She is the founder of Binary Group, an IT consulting firm providing enterprise solutions.


  • Khori Whittaker is the president and CEO of Lighthouse Academies, a network of K–12 charter academies serving students in under-resourced communities in several states.


  • Alec Whitters is the CEO and co-founder of Higher Learning Technologies (HLT), an organization that develops high-rated, engaging study apps for students.

Ex-Officio Trustees

  • Dr Wesley (Scott) Benton joined Excelsior College’s teaching faculty in the School of Health Sciences in 2013. He brings a wealth of knowledge and experience in distance higher education.


  • Dwayn M. Hanford retired from the U.S. Army as an all-source intelligence technician, and is a team chief and senior intelligence officer for the Department of the Army Civilian in the 1st Information Operations Command, U.S. Army Intelligence and Security Command at Fort Belvoir, Virginia.

Chair Emeriti

  • Arthur Gregg has more than 44 years of professional experience, having held senior-level management and command positions in the military and industry.


  • Joshua L. Smith, a prominent leader in higher education, was a professor and director of the Program in Higher Education and Center for Urban Community College Leadership, School of Education, New York University until 2000.


  • Richard Yep is executive director and CEO of the American Counseling Association (ACA), a post he has held since 1998. ACA is composed of more than 45,000 professional counselors and counselor educators.

Trustee Emeriti

  • William Cox is president and cofounder of Cox, Matthews and Associates Inc., a Fairfax, Virginia, firm specializing in publishing, satellite television production, training, education, and consulting.


  • Jean Smith, former vice president of Chase Community Development Corporation, has worked in the banking and financial industry since 1978.


  • Lawrence Vertucci previously held the position of executive vice president and regional president of the Capital Region for HSBC Bank.


  • John R. Wetsch is responsible for supporting the complete application portfolio of the North Carolina Department of Revenue.