As of May 2017, Zachary Hodges will have served as president of Houston Community College Northwest for 22 years. During his presidency, he has seen enrollment triple from 7,000 to 21,000 credit students and has led the development of Houston Community College in West Houston and Harris County. This includes the development of the Katy, Spring Branch, and Alief campuses as well as the dual credit programs in each of these school districts. He has also developed innovative partnerships in engineering with the University of Texas Tyler, Texas A&M University, and the University of Houston.
Dr. Hodges is a community leader as well. He was named Citizen of the Year by the Katy Chamber of Commerce in 2004, received the Diamond Leadership Award from the West Houston Leadership Institute and International Pioneer Award from the World Chamber of Commerce. He was also District Chairman of the Mustang District of the Boy Scouts of America, and a member of numerous boards in Houston, including the Texas Association of Business, Leadership Houston and the American Leadership Forum.
He has been called the “king of partnerships”, “a visionary” and a catalyst for innovation and creativity in developing a new paradigm for 21st century higher education. In 2014, he was selected as the Community College Entrepreneurial President of the Year by the National Association of Community College Entrepreneurship. He is especially proud of the upcoming West Houston Institute and the West Houston Center for Entrepreneurship, both emerging models of higher education in the 21st century.
Dr. Hodges is a strong proponent for entrepreneurship and believes this is the third rail of the community college curriculum, along with workforce and academics. In 2012, Dr. Hodges presented at the National Association of Community College Entrepreneurship (NACCE) conference about the entrepreneurial college. In 2008, he initiated a Business Plan Competition for the HCC Spring Branch Campus with Newspring, a local social entrepreneurship 501c3 organization. NACCE also recognized him as Entrepreneurial President of the Year in 2013.
His community involvement includes the Houston West Chamber of Commerce, West Houston Association-Quality Growth Partner, Memorial City TIRZ, Katy Medical Center, Katy ARTreach, American Leadership Forum, Altharetta Yeargin Art Museum, Genesys Works, Houston Cinema Arts Society Task Force on Film, Houston Technology Center, United Way’s Management Assistance, Partners in Education and Career and Technology for the Katy and Spring Branch School Districts, Chairman of the Mustang District of the Boy Scouts of America, P-16 Council of West Houston and the West Houston Medical Center boards.
At the state and national level, he served on the Board of the Texas Association of Business along with the committee for the Texas A&M University College of Agriculture: Visioning for the 21st Century, the Commission on Effective Leadership for the American Council on Education (ACE), the American Association of Community Colleges Commission on Research, Technology and Emerging Trends, and as the 1999-2000 Chair of the ACE Council of Fellows.
In 2008, Dr. Hodges was invited as a thought leader to the "Higher Education in a Global Society” education leadership conference hosted by the TIAA-CREF Institute. He joined other thought leaders from institutions across the country to examine the critical role of higher education in strengthening worldwide economies, building global collaborations and meeting workforce needs around the world.
Dr. Hodges holds a B.S. in History, and a M.S. and Ed.D. in Counseling from Texas A&M - Commerce. He is a graduate of the West Houston Leadership Institute Class I, Leadership Houston Class XV, American Leadership Forum Class XIX, the American Association of Community Colleges Presidents’ Academy and the League of Innovation Executive Leadership Institute.