John S. Nixon, Ph. D.

Retired Community College President

Dr. John Nixon retired as President of Mt. San Antonio College (Mt. SAC) in 2011. As an Achieving The Dream Leadership Coach, Dr. Nixon works with Los Angeles Harbor, Pierce, and East Colleges, College of Southern Nevada, Kern District's Bakersfield, Portervillle, and Cerro Coso Colleges, Big Bend College, and Modesto Junior College. 

Prior to his role with Achieving the Dream, Dr. Nixon served as President of Mt. SAC,  California’s largest single-campus community college. Dr. Nixon started his tenure at Mt. San Antonio College in 2004 as Vice President of Instruction.  He oversaw all instructional programs and services, including seven academic divisions with 2,270 full- and part-time faculty members.  He later served as Interim President in July 2006 and immediately began expanding relationships and partnerships with local government, business, community, nonprofit, and educational organizations and leaders.

A 35-year veteran in education, Dr. Nixon previously served as Vice President of Academic Affairs at Santa Ana College for 12 years, where he supervised nine academic divisions as well as counseling services and learning resources.  He also served for a year as Santa Ana’s Interim President in 1998-99 and as Associate Dean of Humanities and Assistant Dean of Continuing Education.

Involved in community affairs, Dr. Nixon has served on the board of directors for the Orange County Community Health Care Clinics, the Orange County Chapter of the American Red Cross, and the Orange County Marine Institute. In addition, he has held statewide leadership roles, including co-chair of the System Advisory Committee on Curriculum, the statewide Basic Skills Advisory Committee, as President of the California Community College Chief Instructional Officers Association, as a Board member for the Chief Executive Officers for the California Community Colleges, and as a Commissioner with the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges (ACCJC-WASC).

Educational Background: Dr. Nixon holds a bachelor and master’s degree in English from UC Irvine, and a doctorate in English from USC.

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