Colette Pierce Burnette, president of Huston-Tillotson University in Austin, Texas. has announced that she will retire on June 30. Dr. Pierce Burnette was named president in 2015. She is the first woman to hold the position since the 1952 merger of Tillotson College and Samuel Huston College.
In a statement, Dr. Pierce Burnette said that being president of the university “will forever remain one of my most treasured and most valued life experiences. I have learned far more from my students, my esteemed faculty, and my amazing staff than they have learned from me. I am eternally grateful and humbled by the grace, love, commitment, encouragement, and willingness to embrace change and innovation you gave me during my tenure. My greatest hopes for the university’s future are to maintain forward momentum, continue to radiate as a jewel in the violet crown of Austin, and continue transforming the lives of thousands of students and their families as they steadfastly persist towards the great equalizer – their education – earning their degree.”
Before being named president of Huston-Tillotson University, Dr. Pierce Burnette served on the staff at Central State University in Wilberforce, Ohio, from 1999 to 2012 in such roles as vice president for administration, chief financial officer, vice president for information technology, and chief information officer. In 2012, she served as interim president of Pierce College in Puyallup, Washington. Earlier, this year, she was a finalist for the presidency of Alabama A&M University.
Dr. Pierce Burnette is a graduate of Ohio State University. She holds a master’s degree in administration from Georgia College and State University in Milledgeville and an educational doctorate from the University of Pennsylvania.