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Knelly Named Special Adviser to SUNY for Clinton Transition

knelly The State University of New York has named Ken Knelly as special adviser to SUNY to help administer the planned relocation of Clinton Community College to the SUNY Plattsburgh campus.

In fulfilling responsibilities to the system, Knelly will continue to serve as chief of staff to SUNY Plattsburgh President Alexander Enyedi.

In his role, Knelly will collaboratively lead evaluations and determinations needed for the move among key stakeholders, including SUNY system, SUNY Plattsburgh, Clinton Community College, and Clinton County. The work includes:

  • Navigating Changes: Carefully determining the feasibility of proposed changes, grounded in practicality and foresight
  • Setting Timelines: Establishing clear milestones for the transition, creating a comprehensive roadmap for all involved parties
  • Coordinating Locations: Identifying suitable spaces for Clinton’s operations within the new campus, ensuring a balanced integration of functions and services
  • Developing Shared Services: Creating shared resource agreements, delineating responsibilities, and establishing clear protocols
  • Overseeing Communications: Ensuring clear, timely updates, coordinated among the parties, on the progress of the relocation and sharing of services

Knelly will work with campus leadership to create any necessary committees and detailed review groups, including faculty and staff at each campus, to recommend the best pathways for shared services and the planned relocation.

From this work, determinations will be made of what can be accomplished and when, with the goal being a relocation of Clinton Community College's academic and administrative operations by fall 2025. Knelly will also oversee the sharing of information and updates to the public, creating a coordinated, centralized process.

The continued academic, financial, and regional success of SUNY Plattsburgh is paramount as planning for a relocation of Clinton Community College gets underway. This effort will also benefit the common region and enhance Clinton Community College's central role in providing important career­- and transfer-relevant educational programs.

As it maintains its own identity and provides greater value and opportunities for its students, Clinton Community College can build on its own strengths and its unique offerings to maintain and grow enrollment.

SUNY Chancellor John B. King, Jr., said, "“Ken brings a wealth of experience and a deep commitment to both the SUNY Plattsburgh community and the broader educational landscape of the North Country. The path ahead requires careful planning, and we are confident in Ken's ability to help coordinate this effort thoughtfully. His role will be crucial in facilitating dialogue and exploring viable pathways for this transition. We look forward to seeing the progress under his guidance.”

SUNY Plattsburgh President Alexander Enyedi said, "Those who know Ken, know he will bring to this role what he brings to anything he does — hard work, wisdom and care. Ken’s experience, his tremendous support for Cardinals, deep community ties, and clear strategic thinking are key for this role.”

Clinton Community College President John Kowal said, “I am thrilled to have Ken as the key manager for this project. I have had a great working relationship with Ken and President Enyedi over the years since I’ve been president and look forward to working with him to see this through to implementation. From the time I’ve known Ken, I’ve been impressed by his passion for higher education, the North Country and both Clinton Community College and SUNY Plattsburgh.”

About Ken Knelly

Knelly began his career at SUNY Plattsburgh in 2014, leading an integrated university marketing and communications team. He moved to the Office of the President in 2017, adding administrative responsibilities and later as chief of staff under President Alexander Enyedi, who recently marked four years leading the university.

He leads the university's external relations, serves as a member of the president's leadership team and co-chaired the university's self-study committee for its reaffirmation of accreditation by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education in 2020-2022.

Knelly's past experience includes more than a dozen years as a print journalist as a reporter, editor and newsroom leader. Locally, he is the immediate past president of the Rotary Club of Plattsburgh and led a grassroots effort to bring high school girls lacrosse to Clinton County. He is a native of Baltimore, Md.

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