President Susan Looney, Ed.D., J.D., MBA
Dr. Susan Looney took office as the sixth president of Reading Area Community College in Reading, PA on July 1, 2018. She is a shining example of how opportunity, access, excellence and hope offered by the community college can change lives.
At age sixteen Susan dropped out of high school, choosing to continue her family’s equestrian legacy with a career in harness horse racing. An accomplished racer, Susan holds the record for being the youngest driver to win a race at the Meadowlands and was the first female driver to win a race at Garden State Park. She also represented the United States in the World Women’s Harness Races in Canada and Switzerland. Then a serious racing accident changed her focus and the course of her life. She retired from racing and entered Brookdale Community College in New Jersey to first complete her GED, then seek an Associate’s Degree. Susan was selected as the Outstanding Business Student, graduating Summa Cum Laude in 1991, and ultimately was elected the Graduate Student Trustee for the Brookdale Community College’s Board of Trustees in 1991-92.
Dr. Looney completed her Bachelor of Science in Business Administration and her MBA at Monmouth University in New Jersey. She obtained her Juris Doctorate at Widener University School of Law in Delaware, and completed her Doctorate in Education, specializing in Higher Education Leadership at Nova Southeastern University in Florida.
Susan never lost her passion for the community college environment and in 1998 accepted an appointment as associate professor in the business department at Mohave Community College in Kingman, AZ. As the advisor to the college’s honor society, she was honored with Phi Theta Kappa’s Paragon Award.
In 2002, Susan returned to her home state of Delaware as professor of business at Delaware Technical Community College. In 2006, she was elevated to the role of assistant campus director where she oversaw strategic planning, marketing and fundraising.
Between 2011 through 2014, Dr. Looney served as business coordinator and interim vice president for academic affairs at Colorado Mountain College. In the fall of 2014, she became dean of instruction at her current institution, Reading Area Community College. In the summer of 2015, an appointment by the president and the board of trustees, to the senior vice president of academic affairs/provost soon followed. In the spring of 2018, following an extensive nationwide search, Dr. Looney was named the sixth president of Reading Area Community College.
Dr. Looney maintains strong ties to the community and strives to enhance the college’s partnerships with area organizations and nonprofits. She is the vice chair of the Reading Hospital Board of Trustees, and serves on the boards of Berks Latino Workforce Development, United Way of Berks County, the Berks Alliance, the Greater Reading Chamber Alliance and the Greater Berks Development Fund. Nationally, she is a member of the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC) Commission on Student Success and is a member of the Executive Committee for the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.