Kristi Wellington-Baker, MSW

Kristi Wellington-Baker currently serves as the Dean of Student Success at Walla Walla Community College, co-winner of the 2013 Aspen Prize for Community College Excellence. She believes deeply in the community college mission, and has demonstrated success fostering collaboration and innovative student access and success initiatives at WWCC and at multiple community colleges throughout the nation. She began her career fifteen years ago at WWCC as a Retention Specialist supporting first generation, low income students, and has continued to advocate for engagement of the student voice in unpacking the complex issues resulting in systemic barriers to student success.

She has led pioneering data driven retention and completion initiatives, co-chaired a unique collaborative in house software application development team and engaged in equity disparity studies to address achievement gaps amongst marginalized populations.  In the last ten years, she has been engaged in training and equity consultations related to scaling of data driven practices, successful implementation of software applications, and private foundation resource allocation initiatives in colleges across the nation, most recently through a Project Finish Line project funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. She leads a creative and talented student services team in their ongoing work to develop innovative solutions to student barriers to success, as well as overseeing more than a million dollars in grant & scholarship resources.