Dr. Davie Jane Gilmour - Profile of a College President

Published 09.21.2016

Dr. Davie Jane Gilmour

by Dr. Davie Jane Gilmour

President of the College


“People make a difference. People build communities. You and I do it.”

Davie Jane Gilmour is determined to make a difference. In her 18 years as President of Pennsylvania College of Technology, she has made volunteerism a priority because she believes personal involvement is key to building strong communities.

“It will take a great deal of personal commitment and patriotism to restore our confidence, our communities, and our country. The good news is: History is filled with stories of Americans facing challenges and finding new paths to success.

Dr. Gilmour lives the American dream. Her parents, a welder and a teacher, taught her to appreciate the opportunities of education and to respect the dignity of work and service.

She began her career as a dental hygienist and accepted a teaching position at Williamsport Area Community College in the 1970s. She was working her way through the ranks of college administration when W.A.C.C. became a special mission affiliate of Penn State in 1989. She was named president in 1998.

“Penn College has, as its core mission, a commitment to helping men and women reach their fullest potential. It is what makes me feel good about doing my job every day. There is an energy and enthusiasm on our campus that is unique and rewarding.”

Beyond her role as campus leader, Dr. Gilmour has achieved international prominence as the Chairman of the Little League International Board of Directors. She is the first woman to chair the organization.

She also is Vice Chairman of the Board of Susquehanna Health, former Chairman of the First Community Foundation of Pennsylvania, President of the Community Arts Center Board of Directors, Executive Committee member of the Williamsport-Lycoming Chamber of Commerce Board, Chairman of the Economic Development and Growth Corporation, and Commissioner for the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

This range of experience – from higher education to youth sports, workforce development to health care, culture and the arts to business development – provides a broad perspective from which she draws her thoughts about important issues in our communities.

Dr. Gilmour plans to share her unique perspectives on a variety of topics through the Penn College Blog. Her primary motivation, she said, is to encourage others to recognize the importance of making their own contributions to society.

“What makes us unique as individuals is our ability to overcome obstacles, to apply our knowledge and our skills for a purpose, and to contribute in meaningful ways to our families and our communities. Number one, a leader has to be somebody who’s inspiring, somebody who removes obstacles and gets the job done.”

She concludes that the only way to make a difference is to embrace opportunities to grow and to serve.

“Getting the job done often requires us to step outside our comfort zones,” she said. “That is a good thing. Every time we meet a challenge with courage, commitment and compassion, we can make a difference.”