Mary Chapman

Mary Chapman earned her Education Doctorate degree from Vanderbilt University, Education Specialist’s degree from Drake University, M.S. from Iowa State University and her B.S. degree, also from Drake.


Dr. Chapman joined Des Moines Area Community College in 1990 as the Urban Des Moines Campus Executive Dean/Provost. Under her leadership the campus reached record enrollment levels and created new academic programs in business and information technology.


Since 2000, Dr. Chapman has provided leadership as Vice President for Community and Workforce Partnerships at Des Moines Area Community College. In this role she worked with central Iowa businesses to identify employment opportunities for underrepresented, as well as disenfranchised youth and adults. She has established many successful partnerships and developed strategies with state agencies and local schools and community organizations to provide employer driven skill based training and education for these individuals to ensure their employment and improve their lives.


Second chance Programs such as Youthbuild, Gateway to College, and Prison Reentry are among the many programs that were initiated and operated out of the Community & Workforce Development as well as the integrated service delivery model, Center For Working Families to support student success.


 In 2013, Dr. Chapman retired from Des Moines Area Community College and upon retiring Des Moines Area Community College designated Dr. Chapman the title of Vice President Emeritus.


In the community, Dr. Chapman serves on various community and civic Boards including  Board, Bankers Trust Advisory Board, Iowa Corrections Board, Des Moines Branch NAACP Executive Committee (Women in NAACP Chair), Des Moines Public Arts Foundation Board, Urban Dreams Board, Iowa Health Des Moines Board, and Des Moines Festival Board. She also is a member of Des Moines Chapter of The Links, Inc. and a life member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. 


Since retiring, she continues to devote her time and energy as an Opportunity Iowa Leader advancing the national agenda of Opportunity Nation/ Opportunity Iowa which promotes closing the opportunity gap for youth between the ages of 16-24. 


Among the many awards received, she is most proud of being a 2005 inductee in the Iowa African American Hall of Fame, a 2013 inductee in the Iowa Women’s Hall of Fame and being recognized by the Business Record as a Woman of Influence and by  the Iowa Department of Corrections with the naming of the Mary Chapman Computer Lab in the education center at the Iowa Correctional Institution for Women in Mitchellville.

Chair Women in the NAACP

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