Our donor levels are inspired by the career of Pierce College Chancellor, Michele L. Johnson, Ph.D.
$100,000+: Chancellor and CEO
In 2005, Michele took the helm of the Pierce College District. In relentless pursuit of mission, she continued the development of both campuses and JBLM. The college experienced numerous successes and awards including number one ranking in the nation by Military Times for two-year colleges serving veterans and military families, twice ranked by the prestigious Aspen Institute in the TOP 10 for community college excellence, and received the Leah Meyer Austin Award, Achieving the Dreams’ highest recognition for student success. In 2016 Michele receive the Association of Community College Trustees Pacific Region Chief Executive Officer Award.
From 1999-2005, Michele presided over the Fort Steilacoom campus as President creating a new Facilities Master Plan that resulted in new buildings to support innovative teaching and learning including the student-supported Health Education Center that opened in 2007.
$50,000-$69,999: Community Advocacy and Board Membership
Michele has served on many boards including Tacoma Pierce Chamber of Commerce, Economic Development Board, Workforce Development Council, Lakewood’s Promise, Fuchs Foundation, Tacoma Rotary 8, American Leadership Forum Class XIII, and the Greater Metro Parks Foundation where she co-chaired the Eastside Community Center’s campaign to give back to the community that supported her growth as a young athlete. Michele’s collaborative leadership style makes her a welcomed addition to organizations throughout the community. She was recognized in 2000 by the Tacoma News Tribune’s Top 20 people to watch in the 21st Century and was selected in the inaugural class of the Business Examiner’s Women of Influence in 2003.
$40,000-$49,999: Executive Dean
From 1993 to 1999, Michele served as Executive Dean of Workforce and Professional Technical Education and then Executive Dean of Instruction (District Chief Academic Officer) promoting outcomes based teaching and learning, skill and career development, and life-long learning.
$20,000-$39,999: Professor, Criminal Justice Professional, Mentor
From 1978 to 1993, Michele taught Criminal Justice and Sociology. Michele’s commitment to racial, social, and economic justice has framed her work. In addition to teaching at Pierce College, she taught for Central Washington University’s College Center at Fort Steilacoom and at the Criminal Justice Training Commission, as well as, facilitated behavior change programs for offenders both inside and outside prison. Michele received the Washington State University V.A. Leonard Distinguished Alumna Award in recognition of exceptional accomplishments within the criminal justice system.
Michele is a sought after consultant and mentor. Sharing wisdom and life experience has always been a part of Michele’s life. Her goal is to align people with their passion, supporting them to be leaders and the best version of themselves.
From 1979 to 1984, Michele coached women’s collegiate softball and basketball. Under her leadership, Fort Steilacoom Community College Raider Women’s Softball Team won the Northwest Athletic Association of Community College Conference (NWACC) champion the first and only time for softball. The team was the college’s first to be inducted into both the Pierce College Athletic Hall of Fame and the NWACC. Michele won Coach of the Year honors.
$5,000-$9,999: First Generation College Student
Michele is the first and only member of her family to attend college, getting her BS and MA at Washington State University in Police Science and Administration followed by her PhD from the University of Oregon in Educational Policy and Management. Michele also attended Harvard’s Institute for Higher Education Leadership and Management.
Pre-Title IX, before girls were supported in school athletics, Michele played softball and basketball through Metro Parks Tacoma. She attributes her leadership and team skills to those early years. Her teams won many championships in Tacoma, and those who know Michele know she’s “a little bit” competitive. She continued to play ball long into adulthood.
$50 to $999: Student
Michele has deep roots in the community. She was born and raised on Tacoma’s south east side and is a proud alumna of Mary Lyon Elementary, Stewart Junior High and Lincoln High School.
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