Jermaine Ford

2023-24 Aspen Presidents Fellow
Dr. Jermaine Ford became Florence-Darlington Technical College's fifth president on October 4, 2021. He immediately began a campaign called "Reimagining Florence-Darlington Technical College" to transform the college. The Reimaging campaign was a huge success, focusing on re-engaging both internal and external stakeholders, rebuilding the college's organizational infrastructure, increasing visibility and engagement with the community, transforming the college's focus to student success and workforce development, and assessing labor market data to pipeline a well-trained workforce to high-wage opportunities.

As a first-generation community college graduate, he has advocated for underserved populations to ensure every resident can access in-demand jobs that pay a family-sustaining wage. Jermaine has dedicated his career to transforming lives and offering pathways to greatness through education. Additionally, he takes great pride in the comprehensive technical college mission and is inspired to lead the charge for student success. He began his higher education career at DePaul University in Chicago. He later transitioned to the private sector before returning to the higher education sector at Moraine Valley Community College in Palos Hills, Illinois, South Louisiana Community College in Lafayette, Louisiana, and finally making it to Florence-Darlington Technical College.

Jermaine serves on the Higher Education Research and Development Institute board, the National Institute of Standards and Technology’s Manufacturing Extension Partnership, National Associate for Community College Entrepreneurship board, American Association of Community Colleges’ Commission on Structured Pathways, McLeod Health board, Florence County Economic Development Partnership board, Darlington County Economic Development Partnership board, and the Florence Chamber of Commerce board.

He is an innovative thought leader, passionate about bridging the gap between education and business; he holds an associate degree from Moraine Valley Community College, a bachelor’s from DePaul University, a master’s from the University of Phoenix, and a doctorate in education from Grand Canyon University.