A message from Dr. Falecia Williams, West Campus President
Greetings West Campus,
I’m pleased to share that Dr. Bob Gessner has been selected as dean of science and Dr. Lisa Macon has been selected as dean, engineering, computer programing, & technology. Bob and Lisa have made substantive contributions to our work at Valencia in their roles as faculty and interim dean, and I’m confident each of them will continue to excel as an academic dean.
Introducing Bob Gessner, Dean of Science
Dr. Robert “Bob” Gessner received a bachelor’s degree in microbiology from the University of South Florida, and a doctorate in veterinary medicine from the University of Florida. Bob was a practicing small animal veterinarian in Winter Park for six years and, during the last three of those years, he also served as the personnel manager for three veterinary hospitals.
Bob’s desire to teach led him to Evans High School and then West Orange High School, where he taught for 10 years. He was named Teacher of the Year at West Orange High School and the Air Force Association’s Math, Science and Technology Teacher of the Year for Orange, Seminole and Osceola Counties. Bob’s noteworthy work and commendations continued, and in 2000, he was named the Outstanding Florida Biology Teacher by the National Association of Biology Teachers for the learning-centered methods he employed to teach diverse populations at the high school.
Bob had been an adjunct professor at both Valencia Community College and Seminole Community College for over a decade before earning tenure at Valencia in 2006. Recently, Bob served as the West Campus senate president in 2008, and then as the college-wide Faculty Association president, during the 2011/12 academic year.
Originally from Long Island, New York, Dr. Lisa Macon received a Bachelor of Science in computer science from Hofstra University in 1991 and a Master of Science in computer science from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in 1993. From 1993 until 1996, Lisa worked as a software engineer and project manager for a variety of companies including Exxon, Sony, Citibank, and the Associated Press. In 1996, she moved to Orlando to continue her graduate studies, receiving a Master of Science in mathematics at the University of Central Florida (UCF) in 1999, where she was awarded both the UCF Graduate Teaching Award and the UCF Graduate Research Award for her thesis entitled “k-epsilon Almost Regular Graphs.”
In 2000, Lisa began a tenure-track position in computer programming and analysis at Valencia. In 2003 she received tenure, and was appointed as West Campus information technology program chair in 2004. Remarkably, in 2009, she earned a doctorate in mathematics from UCF while serving as the West Campus faculty senate president. The following academic year, she served as the Faculty Association president. Lisa is the recipient of four endowed chairs as well as the NISOD Excellence Award and the Roueche Excellence Award. She has been a West Campus advisor for the Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society since 2001 and has helped to coach the award-winning Valencia Programming Team since its inception in 2010.
Please join me in congratulating Bob and Lisa! Cheers!