System Commissioner Ron Jackson, who made the appointment, said Chandler would begin his new job Oct. 1. Chattahoochee's provost, Dr. Ron Newcomb, who recently announced he would not seek re-election to the Smyrna City Council in November, will serve as the college's interim president until a replacement is selected, Jackson announced Thursday.
Chandler, who will serve as one of five assistant commissioners under Jackson, will head the new International Center for Technical Education in Atlanta, which is intended to build global recognition of the Technical College System of Georgia's education programs while also working to expand new and existing international student and faculty exchange at the 25 system colleges.
The center will also work closely with the Georgia Department of Economic Development, the University System of Georgia and the TCSG's own Quick Start workforce training program regarding business recruitment projects for Georgia.
"It's my hope that this international initiative will ultimately help to improve the economic and workforce development of our state," Chandler said.
Chandler's base salary of $165,398 as college president will remain unchanged with the new appointment, system spokesman Mike Light said.
Chandler has served as president of Chattahoochee since November 2008. In 2009, he oversaw the merger of that college with North Metro Technical College in Acworth and Appalachian Technical College in Jasper. The new Chattahoochee Technical College is now Georgia's largest technical college, enrolling more than 20,000 students during the 2011 school year. The college has eight campuses serving Bartow, Cherokee, Cobb, Gilmer, Paulding and Pickens counties.
"I'm excited about this new opportunity, but would be remiss if I didn't comment on what an extraordinary two years it has been merging three great technical colleges," Chandler said. "I am very proud of our accomplishments during this challenging economic period. We not only maintained employees but also increased faculty and staff. We also initiated major student athletic programs while renovating and refurbishing facilities and equipment. Most importantly, our faculty and staff developed strong working relationships that I am confident will contribute to the future success of Chattahoochee Tech."