Dr. Saunders has spent her career in higher education, at both major research universities and community colleges. Most recently she was the interim president (for 18 months) of Bellevue College, the State of Washington’s largest community college located in suburban Seattle. Prior to that she served 18 years as vice president for administrative services at two community colleges — Highline Community College in Des Moines, Washington from 1990 to 2005, and for three years at Bellevue College. Prior to working in Washington community colleges she was director of planning and capital budget at the University of Washington and also worked at The Pennsylvania State University and the office of the president of the University of California.
Dr. Saunders has been active within the state of Washington in community college activities — serving as president of the business affairs commission, a member of the Washington Association of Community and Technical Colleges presidents council, a member of the first statewide collective bargaining team for classified staff as well as numerous committees and task forces. At the national level Dr. Saunders has been on the boards of the Society for College and University Planning and the Association for Institutional Research and she served as president of both organizations.
Dr. Saunders holds a Ph.D from the University of California, Berkeley in education, a MA from the University of Chicago in economics, and a AB from Reed College.