Madeline Pumariega

CEO, Miami Dade College


Breaking through barriers and making history, Madeline Pumariega is the first female president to lead Miami Dade College (MDC), the institution she attended decades earlier as a student-athlete. Her passion for innovation in higher education was born out of her own experiences, first as student and then as a longtime administrator at MDC.


President Pumariega prioritizes working with business partners to identify the skills needed in key industries and tailoring higher education programs to match those needs. Her transformative approach accelerates the ability of graduates to enter the workforce immediately upon the completion of their coursework.


Prior to becoming MDC’s President, Pumariega was appointed the first female and Hispanic chancellor of the Florida College System (FCS). In 2019, she became the executive vice president and provost of Tallahassee Community College. She also previously served as president of Take Stock in Children, a statewide non-profit focused on breaking the cycle of poverty by helping students complete their high school education and advance into post-secondary education and careers.


President Pumariega’s love for academics and service excellence began as a student at Miami Dade College. This led into her 20 years of service at the College in positions of ascending responsibility, culminating in her role as Wolfson Campus President. She views her new role as MDC’s president as the opportunity of a lifetime, because it presents her with the greatest ability to serve students who were just like her –– looking for a chance to realize their dreams and succeed in the community they love and call home, Miami.