Chancellor Archives

Mark Heinrich, Chancellor 2012

Dr. Mark Heinrich was appointed chancellor of the Alabama Department of Postsecondary Education / Alabama Community College System on September 21, 2012.

Heinrich holds a doctorate in counseling from The University of Alabama, and earned B.S. and M.A. degrees in psychology from Tennessee Tech University. During the time he was completing his graduate degree at The University of Alabama, Heinrich served on Coach Paul Bear Bryant’s staff as an academic counselor and tennis coach.

Dr. Heinrich’s higher education career spans more than 30 years, during which he’s held leadership roles in academic, student service and technical/vocational areas. During that time, he served as an instructor, department chair, division dean, dean of instruction, academic vice president, associate provost, provost, and most recently, as president of Shelton State Community College.

Before returning to Tuscaloosa in January, 2008 as president of Shelton State, Heinrich worked for Carson-Newman College in Jefferson City, Tennessee, as a faculty member and administrator. In addition to positions in academia, he worked as a private practitioner in psychology and serves on numerous community and academic boards.

Throughout his career, he has been very involved with all aspects of accreditation, strategic planning, program and curriculum development, budget planning and development, enrollment management and many other administrative responsibilities typically associated with higher education.

As an educational leader, Dr. Heinrich places a high value on participatory governance and team-based leadership, a foundational philosophy he sees as essential in his role as an effective and successful leader of the Alabama Community College System.

Dr. Heinrich believes strong college-community relationships are paramount to the health of the System’s institutions and critical to the economies of their local communities. He has worked with many of the state’s workforce partners and believes that the Alabama Community College System holds the key to the state’s workforce needs.

A self-described collaborator, Dr. Heinrich is committed to developing strategies that will unite the system in a common goal to improve the state’s economy by providing a well-educated and highly-skilled workforce.

In 2015, the Alabama Legislature enacted a bill creating the Alabama Community College System and its Board of Trustees. Dr. Heinrich is excited to work with this committed group of business leaders in the creation of a more regionalized system of institutions dedicated to excellence in delivering academic education, adult education, and workforce development.


Susan Y. Price, Acting Chancellor 2012

Susan Yvette Price, as Interim Chancellor of the Alabama Community College System, is chief executive officer of the Alabama Department of Postsecondary Education in Montgomery. Ms. Price has been employed with the Department of Postsecondary Education as Vice Chancellor for Instructional and Student Services since 2004. This division provides technical assistance to the system in the areas of program development, staff development, and student support services; additionally, the division’s staff serves as liaison with external agencies for academic services, occupational and economic development training, and student activities.

She came to the Department from the Washington State Department of Revenue, where she served as Assistant Director, Appeals Division, from July 1997-July 2004. In that capacity, she headed a division of 17 administrative law judges and five administrative staff persons responsible for adjudicating tax appeals brought against the Department of Revenue, and for developing sound tax policy for the State of Washington.

Prior to joining the Department of Revenue, Ms. Price served as its legal counsel for five years (as Assistant Attorney General) and defended the agency before both administrative boards and the Washington courts.  After a federal judicial clerkship in Montgomery with the Honorable Joel F. Dubina, Ms. Price began her legal career as a member of the litigation department of a national law firm headquartered in Seattle.  Before attending law school, she briefly taught English Literature and creative writing.

Ms. Price received her bachelor’s degree in English Literature/Creative Writing from Princeton University and her law degree from the University of Virginia.


Freida Hill, Chancellor 2009-2012

Dr. Freida Hill, the Georgia educator unanimously chosen by the nine-member State Board of Education to lead the Alabama Community College System, made history as the first woman to serve as a permanent chancellor of the system when she took the helm on December 1, 2009.

Previously, Dr. Hill served as the deputy commissioner for the Technical College System of Georgia. She has spent most of her career in community and technical colleges, including five years as a president and six years as a vice president of economic development.

A native of Tennessee, where she taught one year of high school English, Hill has called Georgia home for most of her career. She holds an associate degree from Hiwassee Junior College in Tennessee, a bachelor of arts in English from Samford University in Alabama, and a master of science in Marketing Education and a doctorate in Adult Education from the University of Georgia.

During her tenure with the Technical College System of Georgia, Dr. Hill represented the system in the American Diploma Project (ADP), an initiative designed to place more relevance on the high school diploma, align high school graduation requirements with college entrance requirements, and ensure that high school graduates were both college and work ready.

A Certified Economic Development Trainer, Hill worked closely with the Georgia Governor’s Office of Workforce Development (GOWD) to enable the Technical College System of Georgia to become the service delivery provider of the Georgia Work Ready Certificate program – much like Alabama’s Career Ready Program. Her work with the Georgia Quick Start Program – similar to the ACCS’s internationally recognized AIDT and ATN - provided many opportunities to work with business and industry leaders around the state.

Dr. Hill believes in high standards of academic and professional excellence, and is committed to learning and advocates professional development. She has participated in the American Association of Community Colleges’ Presidents Academy, and coordinated the development and delivery of Georgia’s Executive Leadership Academy.

Dr. Hill concentrates on getting others involved, and believes that a team environment with open and honest communication, along with shared decision-making, allows everyone to grow. She understands the importance of working with all stakeholders and constituents and is comfortable working with diverse groups to advance common goals.

Dr. Hill is passionate about student success, especially for at-risk students, believing that getting an education is the most important thing people can do to improve their lives and those of their families.

"Their success is essential for the vitality of the state," she says.

A self-described Southern girl, Hill says this job is the pinnacle of her career.

"It is exciting to think about working for a system that is student-focused and committed to access in order to facilitate learning and student development," says Hill.


Joan Davis, Interim Chancellor 2009

Joan Yvette Davis, as Interim Chancellor of the Alabama Community College System, is chief executive officer of the Alabama Department of Postsecondary Education in Montgomery. Prior to joining the Department in 2002 as General Counsel and Vice Chancellor for Legal and Human Resources, Ms. Davis, who has practiced law for 20 years, engaged in private practice as well as governmental and higher-education law in the states of Alabama, Georgia, and Florida.

Born in Macon, Georgia, she moved to Tuscaloosa at age four and is a product of Mrs. Henderson’s Stillman College Kindergarten and the Tuscaloosa City School System.

She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in English and history from Bennett College in Greensboro, North Carolina, and the Juris Doctor degree from The University of Alabama School of Law. A proponent of continual learning, she is pleased to have an opportunity in her current capacity to combine her passions for both education and the law.

In addition to serving on Alabama Bar Association committees, she is a member of the Montgomery Bar Association and serves on the Alabama Legislative Educational Advisory Committee. An advocate for children, she enjoys participating in child-development programs, as well as counseling and encouraging youth.

Joan continues to consider the Tuscaloosa area home where her parents, brother, twin nephews, as well as many lifelong friends and valued professional associates reside.


Bradley R. Byrne, Chancellor 2007-2009

Bradley Byrne was born and raised in Mobile where he attended University Military School. He received his undergraduate degree from Duke University, magna cum laude, and his law degree from the University of Alabama School of Law. He practiced law in Mobile for over 25 years, primarily in the areas of business and employment litigation.

From 1994 to 2002, he was a member of the Alabama State Board of Education. From 2002 to 2007, he represented District 32 (Baldwin County) in the Alabama State Senate where he served on the Education Committee, the Education Budget Committee, and the Judiciary Committee, and chaired the Joint Oversight Committee on State Parks.

Mr. Byrne has worked for over 20 years to improve education in Alabama and has served on numerous boards and committees to this end, winning a number of awards along the way, including the Phi Delta Phi Outstanding Lay Person Award in 1998, the Alabama Association of School Boards’ Champion for Children Award in 2004, the Council for Leaders in Alabama Schools Legislative Leadership Award in 2004, and the South Alabama Literacy Champion Award in 2006.

He is also committed to conservation and won the Legislator of the Year Award from the Alabama Wildlife Federation in 2005. In his last year in the Senate, 2007, the Alabama Civil Justice Reform Committee honored Mr. Byrne with their Leadership Award. He is a member of Leadership Alabama, the Alabama State Bar, and a Honorary Life Member of the Alabama PTA.

Mr. Byrne was appointed by the Alabama State Board of Education in May of 2007 to serve as Chancellor of the Alabama Department of Postsecondary Education, in which role he serves as the chief executive officer of Alabama’s two-year college system. The Alabama College System includes 21 community colleges, four technical colleges, Marion Military Institute, Athens State University, the Alabama Industrial Development Training Institute, and the Alabama Technology Network. With a total budget of nearly $1 billion, the Alabama College System served more than 300,000 people in the 2005-06 academic year.

In his role as Chancellor, Mr. Byrne also serves as Chairman of the State Workforce Planning Council. In that role he oversees all of Alabama’s workforce development efforts.

He is married to the former Rebecca Dukes of Montgomery, and they are the parents of four children: Patrick, Kathleen, Laura, and Colin. Mr. Byrne lives in Fairhope where he attends St. James Episcopal Church.