Colette Pierce Burnette

Colette Pierce Burnette

President, Huston-Tillotson University

Dr. Colette Pierce Burnette, a native of Cleveland, Ohio, joined Huston-Tillotson University as president and chief executive officer July 1, 2015.  Accepting such an honorable role gave her the historic distinction of first female president of the university.

After serving in a wide array of higher education posts, most recently as the interim president of Pierce College in Puyallup, Washington, Dr. Burnette arrived to Huston-Tillotson with a mission to set the university apart as the intellectual heartbeat of East Austin.

One way of pacing the university on its path to becoming the Heartbeat is through IDEAL, a set of core values by which Dr. Burnette leads and expects for her community of scholars and educators to lead.  These values are Integrity, Diversity, Excellence, Accountability, and Leadership, I-D-E-A-L.  In addition to the values, Dr. Burnette gave rise to special initiatives such as “Green is the New Black” to ensure there is intentional steps taken to care for the environment and increasing the number of men of color in K-12 classrooms.  She also inspired many powerful Huston-Tillotson social media hashtags such as #geniusgeneration and #wearethepipeline.

Dr. Burnette has a deep passion for the community, as she sits on numerous local committees and boards including, but not limited to, the Mayor of Austin’s taskforce on Institutional Racism and Systemic Inequities, Girl Scouts of Central Texas, Greater Austin Black and Austin Area Chamber of Commerces.

Nationally, she serves on The Ohio State University’s College of Engineering Advisory Committee and the National Association of Schools and Colleges of the United Methodist Church Board.

Speaking of the Ohio State University, just one of her alma maters, she is a recipient of the university’s Outstanding Engineering Alumnus Award.  Engineering was the beginning of her professional life, spent with companies such as The Washington Post and Proctor and Gamble.  She also ran her own computer consulting firm, CompuMent.

Dr. Burnette is a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., Austin (TX) Chapter of The Links, Inc., the National Society of Black Engineers, and Texnikoi Engineering Honorary.

Return on Inclusion: 3 Generations of Women at Work

Voltron - Capital Factory

McKinsey & Co. found that companies were 56% more profitable when women held executive positions. Stanford found that 57% of women leave the workforce. How can we reconcile these two facts? How can we shift the trajectory of the future? This panel of women in their 30s, 40s, and 50s will take a generational approach […]