On November 2 voters will face many critical decisions at the ballot box. One especially significant choice will be for the Santa Barbara City College (SBCC) Board of Trustees. As immediate past President of SBCC and after a great deal of thought, I have decided to “go public” with my support for candidates for the SBCC Board. They are:
The devastating impact of the State fiscal crisis on SBCC is real and the administration and board have faced many difficult choices. In times like these it is important to focus on institutional priorities and to reach final decisions only after extensive communication and consultation. Unfortunately, the decision-making process that has been employed for the past two years has left many in our community, both on and off campus, feeling disillusioned, frustrated and often disrespected.
Sadly, the current SBCC leadership has demonstrated that it lacks a commitment to transparency and broad-reaching consultation. The college leadership has been ineffective in working WITH its constituents to make tough decisions. I am surprised and dismayed that the majority of the Board of Trustees has seemingly supported this decision-making approach.
Dr. Kay Alexander is the one board member seeking re-election who has raised public questions and concerns about District leadership. I support her re-election because of her willingness to take a stand and for her stellar decades of service to SBCC and the community.
I strongly believe that as new board members, Dr. Peter Haslund, Marsha Croninger, and Marty Blum will bring a positive spirit, energy and commitment to the SBCC community. Moreover, they will make it explicitly clear that future decisions and actions will occur only after a consultative process committed to respect for people’s voices and concerns.
Peter, Kay, Marsha and Marty represent a team of leaders who know how to make hard decisions. Their highest priority will be service to students and the community. In addition, they will work as Trustees to rebuild the community’s deep appreciation for SBCC, and to restore a positive work environment for those who dedicate their lives to serving students and our community.—John Romo