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BCC begins search for next president
Lartz leaving museum post to join Barton staff; Fairness in Women’s Sports policy still to come
new slt BCC Heilman
Dr. Carl Heilman

Barton Community College trustees on Tuesday officially accepted the resignation of Barton President Dr. Carl Heilman, effective at the end of June 2024, and approved a timeline for naming his successor.

Heilman announced his resignation at the Sept. 12 Board of Trustees study session. He will leave at the end of the fiscal year.

Oct. 1 will officially open the application timeline, board chairman Mike Johnson said. Applications will be accepted until Nov. 10.

“I would anticipate we get a number of applications for the position,” Johnson said.

The college search committee will meet on Dec. 4 to begin researching the candidates and choosing semi-finalists. There will be a Zoom meeting with semi-finalists on Jan. 5, 2024 and two or three finalists will be announced on Jan. 22.

It is anticipated that finalists will be on campus on Feb. 5, 2024, to meet with the search committee and the public. If all goes as planned, a new president will be named on Feb. 22 and will start work in June of 2024.

Members of the search committee will include the college’s attorney, Randall Henry, who attended Tuesday’s meeting, and Dr. Heilman.

At the end of the meeting, there was an executive session regarding personnel with Henry and Heilman asked to join. There was no action taken when they reconvened.

Richard Lartz II
Richard Lartz II


In other business, the trustees approved new personnel appointments, including the addition of Richard Lartz II as the Community Engagement Coordinator. The former job title for this position was gallery associate. Lartz has served as the executive director of the Barton County Historical Society Museum since 2021.

Personnel changes also included approving a contract for Christina Blanton as an instructor for the Pratt Community College Practical Nursing program, which is overseen by BCC. Dr. Kathy Kottas, dean of Workforce Training and Community Education, said Blanton comes to Barton with approximately 20 years of nursing experience. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Emporia State University and a Master’s in Nursing from Fort Hays State University. “She is going to be an awesome part of the team,” Kottas said.

Barton has offered instruction for the Pratt Community College Nursing Program since 2022. Dr. Heilman noted that the partnership is going well.

Dustin Thompson was approved for the position of instructor and coordinator of the new Ag Mechanics-Top Tech program. Mary Foley, executive director for Agriculture and Industry Education, said he will come on board on Oct. 9. Thompson has an Associate Degree in Diesel Mechanics from Salina Tech.

Additional personnel approved Tuesday, all for positions on the Barton County campus, were:

• Dayna Ball – Academic Advisor at Central Kansas Upward Bound

• Keeley Wolf – Lead Care Provider

• Nicholas White – Campus Safety Officer

Fairness in Women’s Sports 

At the Sept. 12 study session, the board reviewed a draft of a proposed policy titled, “Fairness in Women’s Sports.” This was on the agenda Tuesday, but not as an action item. Chairman Johnson explained that the proposed wording has been “tweaked” slightly and he wanted board members to review it before voting on it.

The policy bans males, men or boys from playing sports designated only for females, women or girls. The policy has been mandated by the Kansas Legislature. Vice President of Student Services Angie Maddy said the new wording does not change the intent of the policy. Student applications that request gender information refer to what is on their birth certificate.

“Again, this is all being driven by the state Legislature,” Johnson said. It is expected that the board will discuss the policy at the Oct. 10 study session and adopt it two weeks later at the October business meeting.


The board also heard a report on the Welding Program presented by Jacob Streit, instructor and coordinator, along with Don Elliott, instructor; a Strategic Planning update presented by Todd Mobray, director of Institutional Effectiveness; and a Monitoring Report of END 1: Fundamental Skills. ENDS are the college’s over-arching goals used to set policy.

END 1 states: Students will acquire the skills needed to be successful for the program they are in.

• Students will have the fundamental skills to succeed in the workplace.

• Students will have the fundamental skills to lead productive lives.

• Students will be provided remediation as needed.

During monitoring reports, staff explain the indicators for successfully reaching the stated goals and the methods used to measure progress. In this case, the board heard reports from Melissa Feist, coordinator of Adult Education; Jo Harrington, coordinator of Assessment and instructor of mathematics; and Stephanie Joiner, executive director of Foundational Education.