MONTGOMERY — Alabama Community College System (ACCS) Chancellor Jimmy H. Baker announced today, Nov. 8, the appointment of Frazier Payne as Interim President at Coastal Alabama Community College. Payne currently serves as Special Assistant to the Chancellor at Bishop State Community College.
Payne will serve after the retirement of Dr. Craig Pouncey, whose retirement was approved by the Alabama Community College System Board of Trustees on Nov. 8. He served as the college’s president since 2019.
“Each and every college in the Alabama Community College System serves a critical role in helping Alabamians, business and industry reach their greatest success, and I am confident that Frazier has what it takes to serve the Coastal Alabama community in such a way that continues to move to the college forward,” Baker said.
A Shelton State Community College alum, Payne joined the Alabama Community College System in 2020 as a Regional External and Government Affairs Liaison. From there, he was appointed to serve as Special Assistant to the Chancellor at Bishop State Community College, where he implemented various improvements in programs and facilities, with a strategic focus on robust community engagement.
Payne was instrumental in Bishop State starting the state’s first Aviation Manufacturing Technology program. This one-of-kind technical program is built to serve the growing workforce needs of the aviation manufacturing industry in the Mobile region. More than 200 new Airbus employees have been trained through Bishop State, with each student earning 18 hours of college credits upon completion of the program. Collectively, students have been awarded nearly 3,000 industry-recognized credentials.
Prior to serving the Alabama Community College System, Frazier served the people of southwest Alabama by working for two members of Congress, then-Congressman Bradley Byrne and then-Congressman Jo Bonner.
In addition to attending Shelton State on a golf scholarship, Payne earned a Bachelor of Science in Human Environmental Science from the University of Alabama.
Payne’s tenure as Interim President at Coastal Alabama Community College begins Nov. 8.
Alabama’s community and technical colleges were merged into one system May 3, 1963, when legislators laid the groundwork for a unified system of institutions to focus on accessible training in “arts and sciences and in useful skills and trades” for current and future labor needs. Sixty years have passed, but that important cause remains the singular purpose of the Alabama Community College System (ACCS). With 24 community and technical colleges in more than 130 locations and an economic impact of $6.6 billion, the ACCS is Alabama’s gateway to first-class, affordable education and technical training to compete in a constantly evolving workforce. More than 155,000 Alabamians benefit from the various certification, credential, dual enrollment and degree programs the ACCS offers alongside leading industry partners. The System includes the Alabama Technology Network, which provides extensive training and service offerings directly to business and industry, and the ACCS Innovation Center, which provides rapid skills training through its Skills for Success program. The ACCS is governed by the Alabama Community College System Board of Trustees.