Dr. Mary Rittling, president of Potomac State College of West Virginia University and regional vice president of WVU , announced today that she has accepted the presidency at Davidson County Community College (DCCC) in Lexington, N.C.

In a meeting Monday night, the DCCC Board of Trustees by unanimous vote selected Rittling to become the next president of DCCC subject to approval by the North Carolina State Board of Community Colleges. Rittling will become the third president at DCCC replacing Dr. J. Bryan Brooks who retired Dec. 31, 2002.

Rittling has served as president of Potomac State College of WVU since August. 1999.

“I have had a fulfilling experience as president,”Dr. Rittling said of her tenure at the Keyser campus.”I believe the stage is well set for a strong and continued relationship with WVU . I have to say that I have been enriched by the students. They have kept me focused on improving the academic and student centered programs at Potomac State.”

During Rittling’s tenure at Potomac State, enrollment increased by a total of 12.8 percent making fall 2002 the best enrollment in more than a decade with over 1,300 students. She also worked with U.S. Sen. Robert C. Byrd, D-W.Va., to receive $1.8 million through an Omnibus Appropriation Bill for the renovation and transformation of the current library into an innovative Information Technology Center.

Rittling has made it a priority to improve services for students, implementing renovation in the residence halls; partnering with WVU Dining Services to enhance cafeteria selections and services; opening the Catamount Children’s Center to give returning students a child care option; and striving for a more student-centered campus with the start of a Student Success Center.

She has helped promote community partnerships with such local businesses, industries and agencies as Alliant TechSystems, Information Manufacturing Center, The Children’s Home Society of West Virginia, and the Robert C. Byrd Institute of Technology.

WVU President David. C. Hardesty applauded Rittling’s leadership.

“Mary Rittling has given Potomac State College forward-looking and positive leadership in very difficult times. Her strategic thinking abilities and work ethic are among the finest I have encountered. She has the respect of the entire leadership team at WVU , and is leaving our Keyser campus as well positioned as it has been in decades. We thank her for her service and friendship. She departs the WVU family with our thanks and deepest appreciation.”

Hardesty said WVU will appoint an interim provost prior to Rittling’s departure. Under new legislation, Potomac State becomes a fully integrated division of WVU in July 2005 with a provost rather than a regional campus president.

Rittling received a bachelor of science degree in Nursing from D’Youville College in Buffalo, N.Y., and a master’s in nursing from Binghamton University in Binghamton, N.Y. She also earned master’s degree and doctorate in higher and adult education from Columbia University in New York City, N.Y. She held several positions in education at State University of New York, College of Technology at Delhi, including vice president of Academic Affairs and interim president.

DCCC is an accredited community college with a transfer program to four-year institutions serving approximately 18,000 individuals annually over its two campuses in Davidson and Davie Counties.

Subject to confirmation by the North Carolina State Board of Community Colleges at its meeting on June 19, Rittling will begin her position as president of DCCC in August.

Potomac State, created in 1901, is a two-year residential regional campus of WVU , offering 47 two-year associate of arts programs and 17 career/technical programs, plus a bachelor’s degree in nursing through WVU .