Ivy Tech Community College Southeast Chancellor James F. Helms will retire in January.

Helms led the Southeast Region since 1998. The region serves Jefferson, Switzerland, Dearborn, Ripley and Ohio counties.

Helms will become a member of the Ivy Tech Community College State Foundation Board. He also will continue as a liaison with some special initiatives in the Southeast Region.

Helms will be completing his 51st year in education in 2014, having been in secondary education for 35 years and with Ivy Tech for 16 years. 

Helms retired from his 35-year secondary education career in 1998. During his first 12 years in secondary education he served as an English/communications teacher, a head basketball coach, baseball coach, athletic director, and guidance director/counselor.

Helms managed the construction of three new campus facilities in Madison, Lawrenceburg and Batesville.

Enrollment in the region has grown from around 500 students to now serving about 4,000 students each year.

"The community college development is a total community movement, of which none in the state have excelled any more than those in this region," Helms said.