Dr. Galen DeHay - President of Tri-County Technical College

Galen DeHay, Ph.D.

Dr. Galen DeHay is president of Tri-County Technical College, a public, two-year community and technical college serving Anderson, Oconee and Pickens counties in South Carolina. He is the fourth president to lead the college, which boasts the highest student success, graduation and transfer rates among two-year colleges in the state and ranks in the top one percent nationally for successful student transfers to four-year colleges and universities.  

Dr. DeHay began his career at Tri-County in 1999 as a biology instructor and head of the science department. He went on to serve as director of planning and institutional effectiveness and later as assistant vice president for instruction and institutional effectiveness before becoming senior vice president. As senior vice president, Dr. DeHay provided leadership for all academic, student support, enrollment, and workforce development functions of the college, including academic affairs, student support and engagement, college transitions, marketing, research and evaluation, and integrated workforce solutions. 

In his 23 years at the college, he has spearheaded a number of programs that have won regional and state awards and that serve as model programs within the S.C. Technical College System, including the I-BEST and Michelin Manufacturing Scholars programs.

Dr. DeHay was among 40 leaders nationwide selected to participate in the Aspen Institute’s 2019-2020 Presidential Fellowship for Community College Excellence program. This highly selective leadership program is aimed at preparing the next generation of community college presidents to transform institutions to achieve higher and more equitable levels of student success both in college and in the labor market. He also is a graduate of the Diversity Leaders Initiative, an award-winning program of Furman University’s Riley Institute that focuses on affecting positive change in the community by helping participants deepen their knowledge of how to effectively manage and lead increasingly diverse workers, clients and constituents. 

Dr. DeHay was named Chief Executive Officer of the Year by the South Carolina Association of Technical College Commissioners in 2020 and is a recipient of Tri-County’s Presidential Medallion for Instructional Excellence award and Tri-County’s Administrator of the Year award. He also is a recipient of the S.C. Governor’s Professor of the Year award for two-year institutions.

Dr. DeHay currently serves as chair of the S.C. Technical College System’s President’s Council. He also serves on the boards of Anderson County Economic Development Collaborative, Ten at the Top, WorkLink Workforce Development, Foothills CAN, and Community Colleges of Appalachia. In addition, he serves on the Aspen Institute’s Rural Colleges Advisory Board, the South Carolina EMS Advisory Council, and the BASF Seneca Community Advisory Panel. He is a member of the American College Personnel Association and the Society for College and University Planning.

Over the past several years, Dr. DeHay has been a presenter at state and national conferences for the Association of Community College Trustee Leadership Congress, American Association of Community Colleges, Society of College and University Planning, state and national STEM conferences, and local business and industry forums.

Dr. DeHay is a native of South Carolina. He holds a bachelor’s degree in biological sciences, a master’s degree in zoology and a doctorate degree in educational leadership, all from Clemson University.

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