Dr. Willard Clark Lewallen is a native Californian and a product of the California public education system where he graduated from Garey High School in Pomona. He completed a B.S. degree cum laude at California State Polytechnic University at Pomona and played intercollegiate baseball. His interest in sports and fitness continued and he was awarded a graduate teaching assistantship at Purdue University where he completed a M.S. degree in exercise science/human performance. Just before entering a career in teaching and coaching he accepted a position as a counselor/academic advisor in the School of Liberal Arts at Purdue University. It was then he developed a deep interest in student learning, student development, and higher education. He went on to complete a second master's degree (M.S. Ed.) in counseling at Purdue University and a Ph.D. in education from UCLA.
After five years as a counselor/academic advisor at Purdue University, Dr. Lewallen accepted a counseling position at Antelope Valley College (Lancaster, CA). From 1984-1999 he served as a faculty member and as a dean at Antelope Valley College. From 1999-2007, Dr. Lewallen served as the vice president of student services at Victor Valley College (Victorville, CA). From 2007-2012 he served as president of West Hills College (Coalinga, CA). He currently serves as the superintendent/president at Hartnell College (Salinas, CA). Additionally, since 1993 he has served as an adjunct professor in graduate studies at two universities (Chapman University and University of La Verne) where he teaches psychological assessment, statistics, and research/evaluation methods. He also has firsthand experience teaching online classes using Blackboard's learning management system.
Dr. Lewallen's career has been characterized by one central theme - "students first." He firmly believes that the majority of issues, initiatives, and developments need to start with the following questionâ€¦"What impact will it have on student development and success?" Questions about resources, personnel, collective bargaining, etc. are important, but only after the "student" question.
Dr. Lewallen's record of leadership, scholarship, achievement, accomplishment, community involvement, and service is documented in his curriculum vitae.
Dr. Lewallen's hobbies and interests include guitar, fitness, and backpacking. His wife of 30 years, Michele, is a health and physical education professor and they are the proud parents of Jennifer (26), Kasey (24), and Parker (22). He and Michele lead physically active lifestyles that include a commitment to physical fitness and health. They have both completed the Los Angeles Marathon twice.