Denise Whittaker to Serve as Acting President at Saddleback College

For Immediate Release: 
June 12, 2017
Denise Whittaker has been appointed to serve as the Acting President at Saddleback College beginning July 1, 2017, following the retirement of Dr. Tod Burnett. A nationwide search is currently underway for the permanent position.

Ms. Whittaker has extensive higher education experience having served as college president, vice president, dean, faculty, and counselor at colleges across the state and country. She has held leadership roles at Palo Verde, Southwestern, Orange Coast, San Bernardino Valley, El Camino, Oxnard and Citrus Colleges.

Denise Whittaker brings expertise in accreditation, fiscal management, student support services, instruction, enrollment management, research, strategic planning, and workforce development. Interim Chancellor Debra Fitzsimons remarked, “Saddleback College has evolved under Dr. Burnett’s visionary leadership and is in good shape. I know the college will benefit greatly from Ms. Whittaker’s extensive experience and collaborative spirit.”

"I am honored and humbled to serve as Acting President and look forward to working with Interim Chancellor Fitzsimons, district and college leadership, faculty, and staff in providing a smooth transition for the incoming, permanent President,” Ms. Whittaker said.

Ms. Whittaker has completed coursework for a Doctoral Program in Education and Work at UCLA and holds a Master’s degree in Counseling from California State University, Los Angeles; a Bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education from Southern Illinois University; and an Associate of Science degree in Liberal Studies from Belleville Junior College in Illinois. 

Originally published: June 12, 2017