LCC's Founding President, Dr. Dale Parnell, Has Died

May 22, 2017

Dr. Dale Parnell was 88.

Dale Parnell (center), with retiring Lane Community College President (and former AACC board chair) Mary Spilde and long-term LCC board member Robert Ackerman.
Credit LCC

Parnell spent his career as an advocate of community colleges in Oregon, Florida and Washington D.C. From 1964 to 1968, he served as LCC’s founding president. Parnell left that job after being appointed by the governor to serve as Oregon’s superintendent of public instruction. Beginning in 1981, he led the American Association of Community Colleges for 10 years. The Daily reports that many of today’s concepts for community colleges were established during Parnell’s tenure as AACC president - the associate degree was created and community colleges were recognized for their importance to workforce development.

L-C-C President Mary Spilde says, “Dale was a visionary and through his work left an amazing legacy to community colleges. His legacy lives on at Lane in countless ways.”

Parnell died on April 20th. He is survived by his 3 sons, 2 daughters, 17 grandchildren and 20 great-grandchildren. His wife, Beverly, died last November.