Cottey Leadership

A Message From President Jann Weitzel

Jann Weitzel, PhD

Welcome to Cottey College, an institution with a 130+ year commitment to the education of women. At Cottey, our entire community, including faculty, staff, alumnae, and the P.E.O. Sisterhood, ensures that our students are a priority — supported and inspired throughout the entirety of their Cottey experience.

Cottey College is a challenging, independent, liberal arts and sciences all-women’s college focused on transforming students into the leaders they have the potential to become. Our highly qualified and accessible staff and faculty members are committed to academic excellence and doing all that it takes to help our students succeed.

Alongside the College’s rigorous academic curriculum, its strong programs in the arts and athletics, and a wide variety of campus honor and social organizations, Cottey maintains a focus on leadership that permeates throughout our campus. Our three tenets of experiential learning, social responsibility and global awareness are imparted through academic programs and resources, as well as the Serenbetz Institution for Leadership, in order to challenge and enhance the lives of our students.

Our mission is to educate women as contributing members of a global society, but what students receive leads to so much more. Cottey not only gives our students an invaluable college experience, but also gives them impactful life experiences that will prepare them for their incredible futures.

Jann Weitzel, Ph.D.
President, Cottey College

PRESIDENT’S COUNCIL

President Jann Rudd Weitzel

Dr. Jann Rudd Weitzel became the 12th president of Cottey College on June 15, 2015, and brought with her the skills developed as a college professor, a department chair, a dean, a chief academic officer, and a provost. As President, she embraces the mission of Cottey College and strongly believes in the value of a women’s institution that is founded on a strong liberal arts and sciences program coupled with excellent instruction in the content areas. Additionally, she supports the goal of preparing each young woman who attends Cottey to be a globally aware and socially responsible leader in her career and in her life.

During her years at Cottey, academic and athletic programs have expanded and the college continues to earn accolades from outside organizations. Dr. Weitzel led the campus in identifying the College goals and creating a strategic plan to address those goals; developing an updated campus brand and logos; addressing risk; and updating the campus master plan. Currently, she is working closely with BILs from across the country to raise funds to revitalize and reimagine the BIL Cottey Chapel, which was built and donated by BILS in 1956. The lower level of the Chapel will provide students a much-needed student center. She has spoken before thousands of P.E.O.s and alumnae and takes seriously her commitment to spread the great word about Cottey College. Dr. Weitzel is a member of the Council of Independent Colleges, the national Women’s College Coalition, the National Association Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) Council of Presidents, and Rotary International and she serves as a peer reviewer for the Higher Learning Commission. She is also a 26-year member of P.E.O.

A native of Iowa, Dr. Weitzel earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in English and a Master of Arts degree in Gifted Education from the University of Northern Iowa, a Master of Arts in Educational Administration from Lindenwood University, and a Ph.D. in Curriculum and Supervision from the University of Iowa. She and her husband Jack have been married for 45 years and have two daughters and four grandchildren.

Vice President for Academic Affairs Joann Bangs

Dr. Joann Bangs joined Cottey College in 2018 as vice president for academic affairs and dean of the faculty. Prior to Cottey, Dr. Bangs was the associate provost of the College for Women, and dean of the School of Business and Professional Studies at St. Catherine University in St. Paul, Minnesota. Dr. Bangs also taught at DeVry University (online), Oakland University in Rochester, Michigan, and the University of Minnesota at Minneapolis. She holds a doctoral and master’s degrees in economics from the University of Minnesota and a Bachelor of Science in Economics from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Vice President for Administration and Finance Amy Ruetten

Amy Ruetten, vice president for administration and finance, started her career with Cottey College in 1996 as controller. She assumed the position of interim vice president for administration and finance in July 2013 and was promoted to vice president for administration and finance in January 2014. Before joining Cottey, Ms. Ruetten worked in the public accounting field for eight years. Ms. Ruetten earned a bachelor’s degrees in accounting and finance from the University of Wisconsin-Platteville, and a Master of Business Administration from Baker University in Baldwin City, Kansas. 

Vice President for Institutional Advancement Sherri Taylor

Sherri Taylor, CFRE, joined Cottey College as vice president for institutional advancement in 2016. Ms. Taylor was introduced to Cottey while serving as vice president for Ketchum/Pursuant. Within this capacity, she provided strategic direction to Cottey’s A Defining Moment Campaign. She has held similar positions with Mission Advancement Partners and Graham Pelton and served as vice president of advancement at her alma mater, William Penn University in Oskaloosa, Iowa. She has helped nonprofit organizations across the country raise in excess of $375 million. Ms. Taylor earned a Bachelor of Arts in Education from William Penn.

Vice President for Student Life Landon Adams

Dr. Landon Adams joined Cottey College in 2019 as vice president for student life. He came to Cottey from Missouri Southern State University where he served as Director of Student Life and Conduct and Deputy Title IX Coordinator. He earned a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration in Marketing at Missouri Southern, a Master of Business Administration in Leadership at Adams State University in Colorado, and a Doctor of Education in Instructional Leadership in Higher Education Administration at Lindenwood University. Prior to Missouri Southern, Dr. Adams worked in marketing positions in minor league baseball.

Vice President for Enrollment Management David Heringer

David Heringer joined Cottey in 2019 as vice president for enrollment management.  Prior to Cottey, Mr. Heringer served as vice president for enrollment management at McMurry University in Abilene, Texas. He has held similar positions at University of Mary in Bismarck, North Dakota, and Lyon College in Batesville, Arkansas. Mr. Heringer earned a Master of Management from University of Mary and a Bachelor of Science with double majors in business administration and sociology/anthropology from Rocky Mountain College in Billings, Montana.

Executive Director of Marketing and Communication Beth Hammock

Beth Hammock joined Cottey in 2019 as executive director of marketing and communication. Ms. Hammock started her career as a TV news producer, then began working in marketing and communication. She has held a number of positions at educational institutions and nonprofits. Ms. Hammock has a strong background in development, having served as vice president of strategic communications and marketing with the University of Montana Foundation and director of development communications for the University of Missouri, Columbia. Ms. Hammock earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Missouri, Columbia.

Executive Assistant to the President/Secretary to the Board Tricia Bobbett

Tricia Bobbett joined Cottey as the administrative assistant to the president in 1987 and now serves as the executive assistant to the President and secretary to the Board of Trustees. Ms. Bobbett has had the privilege of working for former presidents Dr. Helen Washburn and Dr. Judy Rogers before Dr. Jann Weitzel. She is a member of the National Association for Presidential Assistants in Higher Education and the Board Professionals Network with the Association of Governing Boards of Universities and Colleges.  

Chair of the Faculty Jo Byrnes

Jo Byrnes, professor of dance, is chair of the faculty. Professor Byrnes joined Cottey in 2008. She earned bachelor’s degrees in computer engineering technology and theatre with dance emphasis from Kansas State University and a Master of Fine Arts in Dance and Related Arts from Texas Woman´s University. Prof. Byrnes was a founding member and artistic director of a.musing.dance.company, and created and directed the Instant Dance Project. She recently served as a panelist for arts education grants for the Missouri Arts Council.

BOARD OF TRUSTEES

Chair Christine Scheuneman, California

Vice-Chair Grace Chalker, Ohio

Secretary Diann McChesney, Connecticut

Kathryn Bayne, Maryland

James Bickel, Missouri

Patricia L. Brolin-Ribi, Idaho

Cheryl Denslow, Colorado

Georgann Douglas, Texas

Jack Ewing, Jr., North Carolina

Tamara Kenworthy, Iowa

Sandra Laney, Washington

Hope Zoeller, Kentucky

Ex-Officio Members

Brenda Atchison, California

Sue Baker, Ohio

Jann Rudd Weitzel, Missouri

Dr. Jann Rudd Weitzel became the 12th president of Cottey College on June 15, 2015, and brought with her the skills developed as a college professor, a department chair, a dean, a chief academic officer, and a provost. As President, she embraces the mission of Cottey College and strongly believes in the value of a women’s institution that is founded on a strong liberal arts and sciences program coupled with excellent instruction in the content areas. Additionally, she supports the goal of preparing each young woman who attends Cottey to be a globally aware and socially responsible leader in her career and in her life.

During her years at Cottey, academic and athletic programs have expanded and the college continues to earn accolades from outside organizations. Dr. Weitzel led the campus in identifying the College goals and creating a strategic plan to address those goals; developing an updated campus brand and logos; addressing risk; and updating the campus master plan. Currently, she is working closely with BILs from across the country to raise funds to revitalize and reimagine the BIL Cottey Chapel, which was built and donated by BILS in 1956. The lower level of the Chapel will provide students a much-needed student center. She has spoken before thousands of P.E.O.s and alumnae and takes seriously her commitment to spread the great word about Cottey College. Dr. Weitzel is a member of the Council of Independent Colleges, the national Women’s College Coalition, the National Association Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) Council of Presidents, and Rotary International and she serves as a peer reviewer for the Higher Learning Commission. She is also a 26-year member of P.E.O.

A native of Iowa, Dr. Weitzel earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in English and a Master of Arts degree in Gifted Education from the University of Northern Iowa, a Master of Arts in Educational Administration from Lindenwood University, and a Ph.D. in Curriculum and Supervision from the University of Iowa. She and her husband Jack have been married for 45 years and have two daughters and four grandchildren.

Cottey College President's Council

The President’s Council includes in the front: Dr. Joann Bangs, vice president for academic affairs; Dr. Jann Weitzel, president; Amy Ruetten, vice president for administration and finance; Middle: Beth Hammock, executive director of marketing and communication; Tricia Bobbett, executive assistant to the president and board secretary; Back: Jo Byrnes, professor of dance and chair of the faculty; Dr. Landon Adams, vice president for student life; Sherri Taylor, vice president for institutional advancement; and David Heringer, vice president for enrollment management.

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