District Board of Trustees

Our Trustees

Founded in 1968, Hillsborough Community College is one of 28 member institutions in the Florida College System. HCC is governed by a five-member, local District Board of Trustees. The governor of Florida appoints local citizens representing diverse backgrounds and industry to volunteer their service on the Board. Florida statutes provide the Board of Trustees (BOT) with the authority to adopt rules and procedures on issues related to the fulfillment of the college’s mission, including, but not limited to, governance, curriculum and instruction, programs, building, budget and finance, and personnel. The president of the college reports directly to the Board of Trustees.

The BOT meets on the fourth Wednesday of each month. All meetings are currently held at the Dr. Gwendolyn W. Stephenson District Administration Center's Board Room.

Please be advised that due to the Center for Disease Control’s recommendations the in-person attendance to these meetings will be limited. To ensure public access to the meeting  the public may attend via zoom. 

Agendas for future board meetings are posted here as they become available.

  • 5759

    Nancy Watkins – Chair

    Term: 12/23/2020 – 5/31/2023

    Nancy Watkins, of Tampa is a certified public accountant with the accounting firm Robert Watkins & Company. She is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, Florida Institute of Public Accountants and was a member of Beta Alpha Psi and Phi Theta Kappa. Watkins is also a current member of the University of South Florida Board of Trustees and a past member of the Hillsborough Community College District Board of Trustees. She is a graduate of Hillsborough Community College and the University of South Florida.

  • 5849

    Gregory Celestan - Vice Chair

    Term: 12/23/2020 – 5/31/2023

    Gregory Celestan, of Tampa, is the Chief Executive Officer and Owner of Celestar Corporation. He has served as Chairman of the Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce, Director of The Bank of Tampa and Chairman of the Tampa General Hospital Foundation. Celestan received an Honorable Discharge after 20 years of service in the United States Army, retiring as a Lieutenant Colonel. He earned his bachelor’s degree in engineering and Russian studies from the United States Military Academy at West Point and his master’s degree in international affairs from the University of Washington.

  • Trustee member Arthur "Chip" Diehl III

    Arthur "Chip" Diehl III

    Term: 12/05/13 – 5/31/21

    Brig. Gen. Chip Diehl, Ret. is the Managing Director at Diehl & Associates. He received his Bachelor's Degree from the United States Air Force Academy and his Master's Degree from the University of Southern California.

  • 5713

    Brian Lametto

    Term: 12/23/2020 – 5/31/2022

    Brian Lametto, of Valrico, is Corporate Vice President of Marketing at New York Life. Previously, he was Corporate Vice President of Strategy Development and Corporate Vice President and Chief Retention Officer with New York Life. Lametto has also held leadership positions with Progress Telecom, GTE and Philip Morris International. He earned his bachelor’s degree in finance from the University of Alabama.

  • Trustee member Aakash M. Patel

    Aakash M. Patel

    TERM: 6/18/21 - 5/31/2025

    Mr. Patel is Founder and President of Elevate Inc. Previously, he was Director of Business Development for Chamber.com. Patel is Chair of the Early Learning Coalition of Hillsborough County, a member of the Tampa Bay Chamber Board of Directors and served on the Super Bowl LV Host Committee. He earned a bachelor’s degree in English literature from Florida State University. 

  • Juan Penagos Marquez

    Juan Penagos Marquez – Student Trustee

    Term: July 2022 – June 2023

    HCC is also one of three state colleges with non-voting student trustees and Mr. Juan Penagos Marquez was selected as the student trustee for the 2022-23 term.

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