Santa Barbara City College has been a jewel of our community for many years. I have watched our college flourish in so many capacities since the district was formed.
SBCC has served three generations of my family. My children have attended and received degrees from SBCC and my grandchildren are there currently. I personally appreciate the multiple Adult Education classes that I have taken over the years. They have allowed me to remain active and engaged as a life-long learner.
The success of our beloved SBCC does not happen by accident. It is a community-wide effort using a time-tested formula for educational and fiscal stability. The experienced incumbent Board of Trustees has always led and facilitated this effort.
Changing the SBCC Board majority with inexperienced persons will jeopardize the core infrastructure of the college we all love so much. Instead, we need to fix the state legislature.
My family and I support the reelection of incumbent SBCC Board of Trustees: Dr. Joe Dobbs, Dr. Kay Alexander, Mr. Desmond O’Neill and Ms. Sally Green.
If it is not broke, don’t fix it.—Ruth Kallman
I ask that you join me in voting to reelect Dr. Kathryn Alexander, Dr. Joe Dobbs and Desmond O’Neill to the Santa Barbara Community College District Board of Trustees.
During the 21-plus years I had the privilege of serving as President of SBCC, I saw, perhaps more than anyone, the dedication, competence, and commitment of these three individuals. In the scores of committee and board meetings they were always well-prepared, ready with questions and reached conclusions and decisions based solely on what they determined to be in the best long-term interests of the college and communities served.
Not once do I recall a decision being reached based on “special interests” other than what was in the special interest of SBCC’s students and the community.
SBCC, as has been verified by external review teams, is grounded in its unyielding commitment to: student success; developing innovative practices; program excellence; and, engaging the best thinking of the college community in reaching decisions.
SBCC’s effectiveness derives primarily from an environment that: encourages and values the talents and ideas of each individual, capitalizes on these ideas by supporting new directions and innovative programs, and honors the contributions made by so many.
Throughout my tenure Drs. Alexander and Dobbs and Mr. O’Neill and their fellow board members, fully supported and advanced these values and practices. I do not think the community could have been more effectively served.
Perhaps there is no time more difficult to effectively lead a college than in a time of diminishing fiscal resources. And, at no time in recent history have SBCC’s financial resources been diminishing as substantially as they have these past few years. Reductions are seldom if ever popular, and though almost everyone seems to grasp the big picture i.e., “reductions will have to be made,” and “we cannot continue business as usual” however, when change occurs in a specific area, decisions reached are often perceived as “unfair,” being made without adequate consultation etc.
When reductions or change takes place, college leadership is often judged to not be open to the ideas or not to be effective in working with others to make difficult decisions. The assumption often being that if those responsible for final decisions truly listened and were open to ideas or working with others, there is no way they could conclude anything but maintaining support of the program to be reduced or changed. Such a reaction, when individuals have invested so much in their programs and believe so fully in their benefits, is understandable. It may not be possible to accept that the option chosen was simply the best choice among only undesirable alternatives.
Perhaps the most objective assessment can be made by those who, though not operating daily within the SBCC community, are immersed in community college work and have standards by which to assess college effectiveness and the “well-being” of an institution. These community college peer professionals spend intensive time preparing for and visiting the college as an accreditation team.
Statements from teams such as: “Santa Barbara City College is clearly one of the exceptional colleges within the California Community College system,” and SBCC being acknowledged as a “model for community colleges in California” are unequivocal in attesting to SBCC’s strengths. And, perhaps most telling in determining why such noteworthy comments have been earned, are the references to “collegiality” and the SBCC community’s effectiveness in working together. Certainly these three board members have contributed to such impressive results.
No individual or group is perfect, and during times of stress when changes must be made, blame may soothe the disappointment. It does not, however, change the reality.
Without question, Dr. Kathryn Alexander, Dr. Joe Dobbs, and Mr. Desmond O’Neill have unselfishly provided excellent leadership in support of SBCC. They have been guided by the sole criterion of what is in the long-term best interests of SBCC students and our community. I believe they have earned your vote, and I ask again, for you to join with me in voting for their reelection.—Peter R. MacDougall, (President of SBCC, 1981-2002)
I am a strong supporter of SBCC! My husband, Eli Luria, served as an SBCC Trustee for 27 years, a service he treasured because he believed in the extraordinary value that SBCC brings to our community. He also knew that it took deep commitment, knowledge, experience and a true love for the college to be an effective trustee. Eli, Kandy our daughter, and I have supported the college financially and have been involved as both students in credit and non-credit and Eli also taught occasionally, painting in Adult education. Eli and I traveled a great deal and everywhere we went managed to visit a college or university. There was never anything anywhere that began to compare to this outstanding school. How fortunate for Santa Barbara!
SBCC is too important to our community to have it overhauled by a change of the majority of the Board of Trustees. In a time of great fiscal challenges, it would be a clear recipe for disaster for our beloved college. The role of the board is to ensure the well-being of the college as a whole not to focus on single or special interests or groups. The track record of some of the challengers is truly worrisome in terms of their breadth of experience. SBCC is one of the most fiscally sound community colleges in the state with an exceptional record of success.
Let’s keep it that way by voting for O’Neill, Dobbs, Green and Alexander.—Leatrice Luria, S.B.
I write to support the incumbent Board of Trustees of SBCC. We have a jewel in our Community College and it is no accident that SBCC has a stellar reputation. The trustees, unlike our legislative leaders in California, or our prior leadership in Santa Barbara, have been very prudent with taxpayer money, far-sighted in developing innovative programs, following the mission of the college and the desires of the community.
A recent Op-Ed writer said “current board members have done poorly when it comes to listening to the community and taking responsibility for their actions.” On the contrary, the trustees have faced the severe financial crisis we are all facing and have responded admirably by realigning expenditures to those that fit within the core mission of the community college and making sure that only those courses which can meet the appropriate requirements are continued.
We should be applauding the SBCC Trustees for making us all take financial responsibility for what we choose to do and not expect taxpayers to subsidize those who can afford to pay their share. The people that cannot afford to pay have been offered scholarships to help if they qualify, to continue their courses. This seems eminently fair!
The responsibility of the Board of Trustees is about priorities and, thankfully, we are fortunate to have an extremely thoughtful current board. I am asking you to join in and vote for incumbent trustees Desmond O’Neill, Sally Green, Joe Dobbs and Kathryn Alexander. Let’s keep SBCC excellent!—Richard Fulton, M.D. (medical director of the sonography program