Cabrera Morris Becomes First Hispanic Woman to Chair Valencia Board

At its February 21 meeting, the Valencia College District Board of Trustees voted unanimously to elect Bertica Cabrera Morris as its chair, making her the first Hispanic chairwoman in the college’s 44-year history.

Born in Havana, Cuba, Cabrera Morris owns and operates an Orlando public relations and governmental affairs consulting firm that represents Fortune 500 companies.

At the same meeting, the board elected Maria Grulich Toumazos as its vice chair. Grulich Toumazos serves as administrator of the Osceola County Economic Development Department.

The eight-member governing board is appointed by the governor to direct the college’s policies. Other members are Lewis Oliver, III, Jerry Buchanan, Lori Kifer Johnson, Jo Quittschreiber, Guillermo Hansen and Fernando Perez.

Valencia College was named the top community college in the nation for 2011-2012 by the Aspen Institute, a Washington educational- and policy-studies center. A panel of judges selected Valencia for the inaugural Aspen Prize based on the strength of its graduation and transfer rates, especially among minority students, as well as the high job placement rates of its workforce training programs.