CCC Board Member Earns National Recognition

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GRAND ISLAND, Neb. (Press Release) – CCC Board Member Diane Keller has been named the recipient of the 2022 Western Region Trustee Leadership Award by the Association of Community Colleges Trustees (ACCT). The award recognizes community college leaders for responding to the needs of their communities.

Keller will receive the award at the ACCT’s 53rd Annual Leadership Conference in New York in October. As a regional award recipient, she is one of five nominees for the ACCT’s prestigious Mr. Dale Ensign Trustee Leadership Award, which will also be presented at the leadership convention.

“It’s been an honor to work for all of the community college students in Nebraska, but especially at CCC to make Nebraska the best place to live and do business,” Keller said.

Keller has been a member of CCC’s Board of Governors since 2000 and has held numerous leadership positions, including two terms as Chair. She recently retired after a 50-year career with Aurora-based Memorial Community Health, Inc., the past 18 years as CEO. This experience has been instrumental in local, state, and national advocacy for competency in two-year registered nursing programs.

“Diane Keller has been an outstanding board member and is very knowledgeable in many program areas including nursing, allied health, agriculture and business,” said CCC Chair Dr. Matt Gotschall. “She has dedicated hundreds of hours to not only improving CCC, but the entire Nebraska community college system.”

Keller is an active supporter of CCC’s leadership role in several statewide grants and initiatives, including the Nebraska Mathematics Readiness Project, National Science Foundation Mechatronics Grants, Transportation from the U.S. Department of Labor, the Health Professions Grants from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, and the U.S. Department of Veterans Education Services Grants. Each project required CCC to work with local industry, students, community college peers and area high schools.

She has also supported initiatives in entrepreneurship, precision agriculture, and student support services, including TRIO, federal and state student aid, the University’s Equity Transfer Initiative, American Association of Community College (AACC) and AACC’s Metallica Scholars Initiative.

“I was pleased and proud to nominate Diane for this well-deserved award,” said John Novotny, Chairman of the SFC Board of Governors. “She exemplifies what this award is all about. Diane has paved the way and paved the way for women and all those who do public service and do it with heart. I am so happy for her and all of her accomplishments.”

Keller’s ACCT recognition follows receiving the Nebraska Community College Association (NCCA) Governors Award in 2021. The NCCA Governors Award is presented to a member of the Board of Trustees of a college for his outstanding leadership, both within the institution and in the community, and his support of two-year colleges. . She served twice as President and Vice-President of the NCCA Board of Directors and one term each as Secretary and Treasurer. Each term required attendance on the NCCA’s executive committee and board meetings.

Keller lives on a farm near Harvard with her husband, Keith. They have two adult children.

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