Opinion: Bossier losing a great leader

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BPCC Chancellor Jim Henderson’s  selection last month as the 18th President of the 130 year old Northwestern State University in Natchitoches will be a huge loss for BPCC and for our community at large.

True, we all knew that a capable and talented leader like Jim Henderson would not be at BPCC forever. However, we hoped that he would stay just a little while longer.

In Amanda Crane’s front page lead story for last week’s BPT, Henderson remarked on his selection with a mix of emotions: pride, humility, gracefulness and excitement.

Well said, Chancellor Henderson.

randy brownHenderson also mentions the tremendous and overwhelming support from both BPCC and the Bossier community. Amanda’s story also mentions some of Jim Henderson’s many accomplishments since taking the reins as BPCC’s Chancellor in 2009.

Among the many accomplishments are new BPCC programs in nursing, oil and gas technology, construction management, industrial technology and engineering. All of these

are market responsive programs that were much needed at the time of inception.

Therein lies what, to me, has always been one of Jim Henderson’s huge strengths and talents, responding to the needs of our market area…both student needs and the needs of our business community.

After all, that should be one of the main functions of any college or university, responding to the needs of the community in which it resides. Graduating students with degrees in fields of study that our area businesses need is essential to a successful career for the student and also essential to the success of our area businesses.

Henderson
Henderson

Jim Henderson has repeatedly responded to these needs as evidenced by next month’s on-campus opening of the BPCC Micro Manufacturing Center.

In partnership with the forthcoming Benteler Steel manufacturing complex at the Port of Shreveport-Bossier, BPCC’s new center will train for the future not only for Benteler, but also for in other manufacturing discipline’s for years to come! This is a huge win for our area and will help to attract manufacturing companies to our area, which helps us all!   

Yes, Jim Henderson will be greatly missed both at BPCC and in our area! Henderson’s tenure

on the Bossier Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors the past few years and as Bossier Chamber Chairman for 2014 has also had a huge impact.

Yes, we will all miss you. Now, I will have to drive to Natchitoches to hear the many great Ronald Reagan stories and history!

Good luck President Henderson. We are all behind you and will be watching and paying close attention to the many successes to come in your new role at NSU.

Randy Brown is Publisher of the Bossier Press-Tribune. He can be reached at rbrown@bossierpress.com