Board of Higher Ed names Gregory F. Peterson 9th SLCC President

The Utah Board of Higher Education selected Gregory F. Peterson, Ed.D., as the ninth president of Salt Lake Community College today, following an extensive national search. Peterson will assume the position on July 1, 2024, and succeeds Deneece G. Huftalin, who served as president from 2014-2024.

“I’m humbled by the opportunity to serve as Salt Lake Community College’s next president, and I look forward to reinforcing SLCC’s commitment to providing educational pathways for transfer and workforce that improve the lives of every member of our community,” Peterson said. “SLCC has an amazing future ahead, and I couldn’t be prouder to be a part of that journey.”

As part of its delegated duties and responsibilities, the SLCC Board of Trustees named an 11-member committee in December 2023 to conduct a national search for the next president of SLCC. The committee is composed of representatives from the Utah Board of Higher Education and SLCC trustees, faculty, staff, students, administration, and alumni as well as a community representative. That committee, co-chaired by Brady Southwick, chair of SLCC’s Board of Trustees, and Sharon Eubank, Utah Board of Higher Education member, spent several months soliciting input through public meetings and in-person interviews and conducted research to select finalists qualified to fill the president’s role according to statutory criteria. The search committee forwarded three finalists to the Utah Board of Higher Education and a public comment period ensued. The Board then heard input on the finalists and interviewed them. Peterson was one of three finalists announced on April 17, 2024.

Applicants are evaluated for many qualities, including their academic credentials, leadership experience, community engagement and vision for the institution they hope to lead. Both internal and external candidates were considered. This search, as well as others in the past, was conducted on a confidential basis until finalists were selected.

“We have been deeply invested in this process, thoughtfully evaluating each qualified candidate, to determine if they have the leadership style and acumen to lead Utah’s largest two-year, open-access school, and Utah’s most diverse higher education institution,” said Brady Southwick, co-chair of the Presidential Search Committee and chair of SLCC’s Board of Trustees. “This new president will be stepping into a college that is on a strong and healthy trajectory with exciting milestones on the horizon. We are thrilled to welcome the new president into all that is possible here at Salt Lake Community College.”

Gregory F. Peterson, Ed.D., was appointed to serve as the president at Chandler-Gilbert Community College in Arizona in 2018. Throughout his career, he has led key efforts in student learning and success impacting over 100,000 students, including developing transfer partnerships and college promise programs at multiple institutions and launching the first community college Artificial Intelligence program in the nation. Dr. Peterson has worked closely with industry partners and community leaders in strengthening workforce pipelines for students into family-sustaining careers and has served on local, state and national organizations to advance these efforts. He brings experience in student affairs and instructional programs and has worked at urban, suburban and rural community colleges. Dr. Peterson was selected as an Aspen New President Fellow and was recently recognized as the East Valley Man of the Year by Positive Paths. 

“SLCC’s presidential search attracted a robust and multi-faceted pool of applicants that reflected strong alignment with the position profile and the attraction of Salt Lake City, the Utah System of Higher Education, and the state of Utah. From this impressive group, the Utah Board of Higher Education proudly announces President Peterson to serve as the new leader of Salt Lake Community College,” said Amanda Covington, Utah Board of Higher Education chair. “As a visionary leader with a proven track record of success in community colleges and higher education, President Peterson is poised to lead SLCC into the future. The Board is confident that under his leadership, the college and its students will thrive and continue to strengthen our community. We are delighted to welcome him to the Utah System of Higher Education.”

Peterson holds a doctorate in educational administration with an emphasis in community college leadership from the University of Texas at Austin; a master’s degree in postsecondary, adult and continuing education from Portland State University; and a bachelor’s degree in English from Brigham Young University. As a first-generation community college student, Dr. Greg Peterson has a passion and commitment to the community college mission of access and success for all students. 

Learn more about President Peterson at

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