Catonsville campus president will resign; Community college system reorganizing, easing out heads of three schools


Frederick J. Walsh, a career higher education administrator, announced yesterday he will resign in June as president of the Catonsville campus of the Community College of Baltimore County.

Walsh's resignation follows the community college system's plan to ease out the three campus heads and allow the chancellor, Irving Pressley McPhail, to appoint presidents who will assume more day-to-day responsibilities.

Walsh, 63, who played a key role in the systemwide instructional reorganization plan, said he will take a few months off before taking on a new job, most likely in education or training.

Walsh said he and his wife, Barbara Heller, dean of nursing at the University of Maryland, Baltimore, plan to stay in the Baltimore area.

In November, Felix T. Haynes left the president's post at the Dundalk campus for a similar job in Tampa, Fla. Leila Gonzalez Sullivan, the Essex campus' president, has not publicly indicated her plans.

The contracts for the three presidents expire in June, and Francis X. Kelly, president of the college's governing board, said nationwide searches have begun for candidates to replace them. Each president earns $101,000 annually.

The college, with an enrollment of about 65,000 students at Dundalk, Catonsville and Essex, began a reorganization about two years ago to bring the once-independent institutions under one system. A report said the previous organization was "near chaos."

Walsh was president at Catonsville for nine years and helped advance its status in Maryland and its reputation for technical training. "Dr. Walsh has helped to establish the Catonsville campus as a center of excellence in information technology," McPhail said.

Under Walsh's leadership, a $5.8 million Applied Technology Center opened last fall, and the college's foundation has assets of $4 million as an alternative source of funding for the school. The third floor of the center was financed with foundation funds.

The center has become an educational showcase, housing the largest computer-aided design facility in Maryland and a data communications laboratory.

The Catonsville campus was the only two-year school in Baltimore County, and one of the first in Maryland, to offer courses through the Internet and interactive television.

"When I began here, I wanted to stress technology, expand services to business and industry and other goals that I pretty much met," Walsh said. "It's time for new leadership at Catonsville."

Walsh also helped to increase the alumni association's membership to nearly 8,000 and minority enrollment by 40 percent.

Before coming to Catonsville, the New York City native held administrative posts at Montgomery College, Northampton County Area Community College in Bethlehem, Pa., and the State University of New York Technical College.

Pub Date: 2/03/99

An article in yesterday's editions incorrectly described Frederick J. Walsh's forthcoming departure from his post as president of the Catonsville campus of the Community College of Baltimore County. Walsh is retiring, not resigning, in June. The Sun regrets the error.
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