Kenneth Ender, Ph.D., is President of William Rainey Harper College, a large community college located outside of Chicago, Illinois. Through partnerships and alliances, Dr. Ender has positioned Harper as a leading 21st-century community college by increasing graduation, transfer and certificate completion rates; aligning Harper's curriculum with high schools; training students for new economy jobs; and implementing new accountability and transparency standards. Since Dr. Ender came to Harper in 2009, Harper has experienced record graduation rates and a dramatic increase in the number of students who come to Harper college-ready. The College has also formed new alliances with businesses to fill the shortage of skilled workers in key industries.
Before coming to Harper, Dr. Ender served as President of Cumberland County College in New Jersey for 11 years. Previously, Dr. Ender held a variety of positions in higher education, including Vice President for Academic Affairs at Richland Community College, Interim District Dean at Cuyahoga Community College, Associate Vice President for Administrative Services at Cleveland State University, Director of Student Activities at Virginia Commonwealth University, and Director of Student Advising at University of Georgia.
Dr. Ender holds a Ph.D. in urban services leadership from Virginia Commonwealth University, a master's degree in education from the University of Georgia and a bachelor's degree in business management, also from Virginia Commonwealth University.
Dr. Ender serves on the Board of Directors of the American Association of Community Colleges and he is President of the Board of Directors of the Chicago/Cook Workforce Partnership and co-chairs the Workforce Development Committee of the Illinois Council of Community College Presidents.
Dr. Ender was invited to the January 2014 White House Summit focused on Increasing Opportunity for Low-Income Students and appointed to the Advanced Manufacturing Partnership (AMP 2.0) Steering Committee which is a work group of The President's Council of Advisors on Science and Technology.
Dr. Ender is also a founding member of the Community College Workforce Consortium, which is a national consortium of community colleges focused on workforce development partnerships with industry.
Dr. Ender is a frequent speaker at national conferences and forums on community college leadership, strategic planning, increasing student success and completion rates, workforce development, community engagement, and increasing accountability and transparency in higher education.
Dr. Ender enjoys golf, tennis, surf fishing and has completed 16 marathons. He lives in Inverness, Illinois with his wife Cathy and dogs Sammy and Sissy.