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Deneece G. Huftalin, PhD

Dr. Deneece G. Huftalin is the eighth president of Salt Lake Community College (SLCC), named in September 2014. A visionary leader and an unyielding advocate for accessible and quality education, she has dedicated her career of over three decades to making college accessible to all. Dr. Huftalin’s leadership and forward-thinking approach have guided Utah’s most diverse higher education institution through remarkable growth and transformation.  

Upon appointment as president, Dr. Huftalin led an institution-wide strategic planning process resulting in a new mission, vision, values, and goals for the College. Driving this effort was her commitment to the democratization of higher education and her firm belief that it should be available to all. As a result, SLCC has led on many endeavors that promote college access, including:  

  • Creating the SLCC Promise program, which covers students’ tuition and fees when federal grants fall short.  
  • Developing a robust Open Educational Resources initiative, which has saved SLCC students a staggering $24 million in textbook costs since 2014.   
  • Activating and significantly growing SLCC’s high-school outreach program, the Partnership for Accessing College Education (PACE) Scholarship Program, and more recently, middle-school outreach programs.  
  • Restoring a Prison Education Program at the Utah State Correctional Facility.  
  • Reducing access and opportunity gaps for immigrants by opening the College’s Dream Center.  
  • Re-branding and growing Salt Lake Technical College at SLCC, which specializes in affordable, short-term training for students wanting to quickly launch prosperous careers. 

Dr. Huftalin also prioritizes geographic accessibility to higher education. SLCC boasts nine locations throughout Salt Lake County, and as president she advocated for the opening of SLCC’s West Valley Center and worked with government officials and industry leaders to build the Westpointe Workforce Training & Education Center. Dr. Huftalin also forged a dynamic partnership with the University of Utah to open the Juniper Building at the College’s new Herriman Campus, a unique collaboration allowing students to earn associate degrees from SLCC and then continue their studies at the U, all at the same location.  

Before joining SLCC in 1992, Dr. Huftalin held roles at William Rainey Harper College, Northwestern University, the University of Utah, Stanford University, and the Institute for Shipboard Education. Prior to becoming the College’s president, she served in various capacities at SLCC including director of academic and career advising, dean of students, vice president of student services, and interim president. 

Dr. Huftalin holds national service positions on the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco's Salt Lake City Branch Board of Directors and the Presidents’ Alliance on Higher Education and Immigration Steering Committee. She also previously served as a commissioner and executive committee member for the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU). 

Over the years, Dr. Huftalin has been widely recognized for her leadership acumen and commitment to students, receiving the Salt Lake Chamber’s ATHENA Leadership Award, the Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education (NASPA) regional and national President Awards, and the American Association of University Women’s Salt Lake City Branch’s Distinguished Woman of the Year award. She was also named a Distinguished Alumna of the University of Utah in 2016.

Dr. Huftalin holds a bachelor's degree from the University of Utah, a master's degree from UCLA, and a doctorate in Education, Leadership, and Policy from the University of Utah. She and her husband, Tim, are the parents of two sons, Max and Eli. She enjoys hiking and exploring the mountains of Utah, boating, traveling, and spending time in her beautiful backyard with family and friends.


Official Photos

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