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EDUCATION : No-Confidence Vote in Santa Monica College Board of Trustees Fails

June 15, 1995|EMELYN CRUZ LAT

Dissident Santa Monica College faculty members failed to deliver a vote of no confidence to the board of trustees for its selection of an out-of-state administrator to head the community college.

Faculty members, bitterly divided over the trustees' decision to appoint Massachusetts Secretary of Education Piedad Robertson as college president, split on the vote of no confidence with 183 in favor and 183 opposed. Three voters abstained. Those who participated in the election represented fewer than half the college's 850 full- and part-time faculty members.

Trustee Annette Shamey said the majority of faculty members were either against taking such a vote or did not think the issue was important enough to consider. "A failed no-confidence vote is essentially a vote of confidence," she said. "We value this message from the faculty."

Those who supported the no-confidence vote said it was a way to express disappointment over the selection of Robertson, who will take office July 1. Opponents said the vote would further polarize the college community and damage faculty relations with the board.

Linda Webster, president of the faculty's academic senate, said: "The final vote was indeed the best outcome because it reminds us that there is no mandate and it is time to move on."

College Vice President Darroch (Rocky) Young, the candidate favored by much of the faculty to head the college, agreed the outcome of the vote will help the college community move forward. "It is time for differences to be put aside and for the college to pull together and get back to the business of the college--student learning," he said in a prepared statement.

Robertson, who will become the college's first female president, is replacing Richard Moore, who departed last year to head a community college in Las Vegas.

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