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Release Date: 
Wednesday, November 7, 2018

Roxanne McDonald returns to HFC Board of Trustees; incumbents Thorpe and Lane re-elected

headshot of Roxanne McDonald

In the 2018 midterm election, Roxanne McDonald was elected to the HFC Board of Trustees. She is no stranger to the role, having served on the Board from 2012-16. In addition, incumbents James Thorpe and Mary Lane were re-elected.

Out of the eight candidates vying for a full six-year term on the Board, McDonald won 8,592 votes, and Thorpe won 8,886. Their terms will expire Dec. 31, 2024. Lane, the longest-serving member on the Board, was elected to a partial term of two years, which will expire Dec. 31, 2020. Lane replaces Celia Nasser, who did not seek re-election.

“I’m honored to be elected and look forward to returning to the Board. It’s great to back!” said McDonald.“I missed my colleagues on the Board and at the College. I’m looking forward to working with our new president, Mr. Russell Kavalhuna, who is a visionary leader. I’m eager to guide HFC as it begins its next eight decades.”

In turn, Kavalhuna offered his congratulations to McDonald, Thorpe, and Lane.

“My thanks to all of the community members who ran for the Board," said Kavalhuna. "Congratulations to incoming Trustee Roxanne McDonald, who has served on our Board in the past and is a proud alumna of our College. I also congratulate Trustees James Thorpe and Mary Lane on their re-election to the Board. Our thanks as a community are due to Trustee Celia Nasser, who has served with distinction for 18 months. I am proud to work with all of our Trustees, who are truly dedicated to the College’s mission and who devote a great deal of time to serving our community.”

Meet Roxanne McDonald

Born in Shreveport, LA, McDonald moved with her family to Michigan when she was 7. She is a 1982 alumnus of Dearborn High School. She graduated summa cum laude in 1991 from HFC with dual associate degrees in hospitality and hotel/restaurant management. While a student at HFC, she served as a founding executive board member of the Ice Carvers Club. In 1994, she graduated magna cum laude from Lawrence Technological University (LTU) in Southfield with her undergraduate degree in business administration. She is certified by the Michigan Association of School Boards (MASB).

McDonald has been a leader in the Dearborn community for decades. She currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Dearborn Goodfellows and the Dearborn Community Fund. She has also served on the HFC Foundation Board, the Wayne County Association of School Boards, and the Dearborn PTA Council Executive Board.

“I am pleased that I have a good relationship with everyone who has been my opponent when I’ve run for office. I’m really proud of that. Dearborn is our city, and we all have to work together to improve it,” said McDonald.

Military mom, a heart for public service, and a passion for education

McDonald and her husband, Chuck, have been together for more than 30 years. They have three sons: Brenden, Mike, and Corey. Brenden works in the auto industry, Mike is a disabled Army veteran who works in surgery preparation at the VA Hospital in Ann Arbor, and Corey is currently in his first duty station for the U.S. Air Force in Fort Hill, UT. Influenced by the sacrifices of her sons, McDonald has been an advocate for service members and is a member of the Michigan Military Moms and the American Legion Auxiliary.

She was involved in the development of Dearborn’s Response to Bullying Behavior, an acclaimed community initiative, and presented the program to audiences both locally and nationally. Her passion for education inspired her to lead several parent rallies to Lansing to protest budget cuts and to promote child/student advocacy. She also spearheaded programs that gathered and delivered school supplies and business attire to students.

“I have a heart for public service and a passion for education. It's in my blood,” said McDonald. “Education changes lives. I never planned on going to college. I got married young, divorced, and had a child to support. To do that, I had to get an education. When I first came to Henry Ford College, I was timid and nervous. But I gained confidence, accomplishing more than I ever imagined. That gave me a sense of satisfaction and confidence. I not only succeeded, I succeeded with honors! That pushed me to go further. From that moment, I realized how much education can change lives. I want to help people reach their educational goals, because most people have more potential than they realize.”