Dr. Anita Thomas, president of North Central College.

Meet the President

Meet Dr. Anita Thomas, 11th president of North Central College

Dr. Thomas is our 11th president as well as the first woman and the first person of color to lead North Central College as president.

If you would like to contact Dr. Thomas, please email President@noctrl.edu.

Dr. Anita Thomas, president of North Central College.


Anita Thomas, Ph.D., assumed her role as the 11th president of North Central College on July 1, 2023. She also holds the faculty rank of professor of psychology in North Central’s College of Arts and Sciences.

Thomas was unanimously elected by North Central College’s Board of Trustees following a national search that engaged trustees, students, alumni, faculty, and staff. Her appointment is historic. In North Central’s 162-year history, she is the first woman and the first person of color to serve as president.

Prior to North Central, Dr. Thomas was executive vice president and provost at St. Catherine University in St. Paul, Minnesota. As chief academic officer, she provided strategic leadership for the university’s academic programs. She was also responsible for student affairs and career development. Prior to serving at St. Catherine, Dr. Thomas was the founding dean of the College of Applied Behavioral Sciences at the University of Indianapolis, where she provided oversight for academic programs in psychology, social work, mental health counseling, and art therapy.

Previously, Dr. Thomas served for 10 years at Loyola University Chicago, where she was a faculty member in the counseling psychology and school counseling department. She became the graduate program director for counseling psychology and later associate dean for academic affairs and research in the School of Education.

A native of Louisville, Kentucky, Dr. Thomas was raised in a family of educators. She holds a doctorate in counseling psychology from Loyola University Chicago, specializing in family therapy and multicultural counseling. She also holds a master’s degree in community counseling from Loyola and a bachelor’s degree in education and social policy from Northwestern University.

Find Out More

Dr. Kathryn Birkett, Dr. Anita Thomas and Holly Humphrey, MD.

Making History

During Women's History Month, Holly Humphrey, MD '79, the first woman ever to serve as chair of the North Central Board of Trustees, introduced President-elect Dr. Anita Thomas, the first woman to lead the College as president, who was recruited by Dr. Kathryn Birkett, chair of the presidential search committee.


Get to know Dr. Anita Thomas as she shares her thoughts about why she came to North Central and what she hopes to bring as the 11th president of the College.


Re-live the introduction of Dr. Anita Thomas live in the Wentz Concert Hall.

Dr. Anita Thomas, president of North Central College, taking a selfie with a faculty member.


Read the announcement from the chair of the Board of Trustees, Dr. Holly Humphrey '79.

Dr. Anita Thomas, president of North Central College, talking with students.

Press Release

Read the press release about the appointment of the College's 11th president.

Have any questions?

The Office of the President is committed to keeping you informed and connecting the campus community with North Central College's 11th President.