▲ Dobelle’s relationship with then-Governor Michael Dukakis, as well as many other local and national politicians, helped navigate MCC through stormy political waters, particularly during its capital expansion years. “We had faculty and administrators invested, this was a discussion about the future of the college, and we had a lot on our plate,” said Henderson. “We needed permanent facilities. We needed to grow. We needed to continue our mission to educate. And, we needed to do it all during tough financial times.” A C A N D I DAT E E M E R G E S As a member of that search committee, Carole Cowan specifically remembers seeing one resume in the mix quickly rise to the top: that of Evan Dobelle. “I had piles of resumes at home on the living room floor and when I looked at Evan’s, I found it interesting, but thought there’s no way he’ll be picked because he doesn’t have the background in higher education,” Cowan recalled. “Then he came in and interviewed, and once the interview was over, there was no doubt. He was a classy guy, head and shoulders above everybody else. He was going to be the college’s second president.” Henderson said there were another 100 applicants for the job, but only about a dozen actually got interviewed. He agreed with Cowan that Dobelle’s credentials stood out. “We wanted to acquire facilities, foster a dynamic environment, and move the school forward, and when Evan came in for his interview he became the unanimous choice because he had the energy and ability to work with the state to get us the resources we needed to expand,” said Henderson. Dobelle had been a two-term Pittsfield mayor, the Massachusetts Secretary of Environmental Management, chairman of the board of advisors for Berkshire Community College, and served as U.S. Chief of Protocol during Jimmy Carter’s presidential administration. 43