Board Report: January 19, 2023

January 20, 2023 | San Diego Community College District

Special Report to the Public: 

Geysil Arroyo

Trustee Geysil Arroyo thanked those who made public comment. She noted that she was sworn in for a full term as a Trustee in December, and she said that she is looking forward to working with her fellow board members to support the work of the chancellor and presidents in attracting, retaining, and providing the best educational experience possible for students. She said that she attended the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Parade on January 15 where she saw a lot of students and employees in attendance, and she thanked Dean Luke Menchaca and other leaders who helped organize the parade participants and floats.

Mary Graham

Trustee Mary Graham said that she attended the Jackie Robinson YMCA Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Human Dignity Award Breakfast on January 13 with Academic Senate Presidents John Crocitti and Pablo Martin, the All People’s Breakfast on January 16, and participated in the MLK Parade on January 15. She said that it has been a great start to the year being able to attend these events that remind her of the values and mission of the SDCCD.

Craig Milgrim

Trustee Craig Milgrim reported that during Closed Session Non-Academic Non Classified Employees (NANCE) were discussed and asked the chancellor to agendize a report about this employee group during a future meeting within the next six months so that the Board can be better informed about the role that these temporary employees play in the District’s operations.

Bernie Rhinerson

Trustee Bernie Rhinerson said that he appreciated Chancellor Cortez’s report about enrollment increasing, a trend he hopes will continue. He reported that the State budget proposed by Governor Gavin Newsom’s on January 10 was not as strong as in years past, stating the District will have to budget accordingly, but he was pleased to see the Resource Allocation Formula (RAF) agreement is still working and will help employees manage the burden of inflation. He said that he’s looking forward to hearing the future report on NANC employees so that the Board can make ensure that these employees are being used and monitored appropriately.

Dr. Maria Nieto Senour

Trustee Maria Nieto Senour said that she attended various MLK events with her colleagues and the Citizens’ Oversight Committee meeting on January 9 where the Propositions S and N bond campaign is winding down. She wished a happy birthday to Trustees Arroyo and Rhinerson and Chancellor Cortez, who all celebrated in January.

Dr. Carlos O. Cortez

Chancellor Carlos Cortez reported that members of the Board of Trustees and District leaders will attend the Community College League of California’s annual legislative conference January 29-30 in Sacramento. He said the SDCCD participated in the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Parade, where the District's three credit colleges supported one float and College of Continuing Education supported a second float. He noted that the annual MLK Parade and Pageant started at the Educational Cultural Complex. He reported that from 3-5 p.m. on January 20, the Board of Trustees will host a study session on housing. Chancellor Cortez reported intercession enrollment is up year-over-year, with the three credit colleges exceeding FTES enrollment targets, and noted that students continue to demonstrate a preference for short-term and online courses. He also reported that the headcount for spring semester currently stands at 37,641, which is 3,000 more students than at the same time last year.

Chancellor Cortez reported that the SDCCD received support from local federal legislators n the form of three community funded projects to expand services to foster youth, immigrants/refugees, and LGBTQ+ student populations. He reported that the City College baccalaureate degree program in Cyber Security will go before the California Community Colleges Board of Governors next week, where it is anticipated to be approved, and he congratulated President Ricky Shabazz and his team for their outstanding leadership. Also at City College, he said the Graphic Design program won 17 awards at the 2022-23 World Brand Design Society Student Design Awards, and that the program was dually recognized as Institution of the Year by the organization and ranked second in its global rating. Chancellor Cortez reported that Mesa College’s Entrepreneurship Program launched a Small Business Virtual Incubator (SBVI) to aid aspiring and existing entrepreneurs in launching or expanding their businesses. Chancellor Cortez reported that Miramar College has submitted a baccalaureate degree proposal in Fire Science to the state system, and the college recently received a $1.4 million 5-year Math, Engineering, and Science Achievement (MESA) Grant. He reported that College of Continuing Education Student Trustee Julia Kogan was interviewed by Channel 10 on January 18 about her journey and the SDCCD’s adult pathway for the Promise program, and he recognized President Tina M. King’s presentation during the January 18-21 AACC Workforce Development Institute. He shared his report with Executive Vice Chancellor Bonnie Ann Dowd who will retire at the end of January, and welcomed Kelly Hall, Michelle Fischthal, and Larry Maxey into their new roles. He also shared his report with Vice Chancellor Joel Peterson who provided an update on the Police Advisory Committee.

Diego Bethea

Student Trustee Diego Bethea reported that San Diego City College’s Pride Hub will have extended hours from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday through Thursday starting January 30. He reported that San Diego Mesa College’s The Stand held a free farmers market food distribution on January 19, and the Mesa Foundation scholarship applications are open with $180,000 available to be awarded. Student Trustee Bethea also reported that San Diego Miramar College supported the construction of the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Parade float, and the college is seeking student volunteers to participate in 30-minute interview sessions about LGBTQIA+ student resiliency and success. He reported that San Diego College of Continuing Education recently hosted several enrollment success sessions, and participated in the MLK parade.


At its regular meeting of January 19, 2023, which was conducted in-person, with online participation available, the Board of Trustees:

  • Announced from the Closed Session the Board’s unanimous decision to terminate a classified employee, a contract faculty, and a contract faculty counselor at San Diego Miramar College.
  • Heard public comment from Marie McMahon, Kirk Webley, Joanna Aud, and Rich Halliday who spoke on a on a Closed Session agenda item. Sasha Reva, Patty Stottlemyer and Beverly Raimondo who spoke about the renewal of the District’s state of emergency mandate and requirement for vaccines, and Dora Meza who spoke about COVID-19 policies. Supervisory and Professional Administrators Association (SPAA) Vice President Kimberly Tapia who spoke about a recent change to Social Security withholding that effects members of the College Police Department, including sergeants and lieutenants who are represented by SPAA, and asked that proposed compensation adjustments be reviewed. College Academic Senate (AS) President Maria-Jose Zeledon-Perez shared her excitement for the upcoming semester, including convocation and Flex Week where many new employees will be welcomed. She also reported that the college was approved to offer a bachelor’s degree in cyber defense and thanked those who advocated on the college’s behalf. Mesa College AS President John Crocitti reported that the college held a workshop organized by Dr. Judy Sundayo that focused on how to have collegial conversations on difficult topics. College AS President Pablo Martin said the college is tackling difficult issues in good faith and with clear and open communication. The college hosted Dr. Julie Keiffer-Lewis who spoke on cultural humility and equity and hosted a table at the MLK Human Dignity Award Breakfast. He also shared that the college submitted a proposal to offer a bachelor’s degree in fire science and was awarded a MESA program grant of $1.4 million over the next five years.
  • Adopted revisions to Chapter 6 – Business and Fiscal Services Board Policies as part of a comprehensive six-year review to ensure currency.
  • Ratified the Resource Allocation Formula (RAF) Tentative Agreements for a salary increase for the AFT Guild College & Continuing Education Faculty and AFT Guild Classified Units; the AFT Guild Non-Academic Non Classified Employees Unit, the Supervisory & Professional Administrators Association; the Association of Confidential Employees Unit; the Executive Management Unit, and the Chancellor.
  • Adopted resolutions reaffirming that the state of emergency declared by the Board on March 12, 2020, continues and that state or local officials continue to impose or recommend social distancing measures; and regarding compensation of members of the Board of Trustees, effective January 1, 2023.
  • Approved the appointment and employment contract of Kelly Hall as vice chancellor of Finance and Business Services, of Michelle Fischthal as vice chancellor of Institutional Innovation and Effectiveness, and of Larry Maxey as vice president of Student Services at Mesa College.
  • Authorized an amendment to the 2022-2023 College and Career Access Pathways (CCAP) Dual Enrollment Partnership Agreement with San Diego Unified School District.
  • Accepted the District’s 2021-22 Independent Auditor’s Reports, which were conducted by CliftonLarsonAllen LLP. Audits for the five major funds in the District were provided: General Fund, Proposition S Fund, Proposition N Fund, the SDCC Auxiliary Organization, and the Social Security Alternative Plan. The Board’s Budget Study and Audit Subcommittee (Trustees Milgrim and Rhinerson) had reviewed the audits in depth with Executive Vice Chancellor Bonnie Ann Dowd and Chancellor Cortez prior to the meeting. Auditor David Robydek addressed the Board regarding the audits. The audits were unmodified, and one finding was identified.
  • Entered into subcontract agreements with the Foundation for Grossmont and Cuyamaca Colleges for Strong Workforce Program activities at San Diego City College and the San Diego Community College District.
  • Entered into agreements with the California Commission on Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) to provide the Academy Instructor Certification Course (AICC) at Miramar College; with the California Department of Education and the California Department of Social Services for Child Development programs at City, Mesa, and Miramar colleges. Adopted a resolution and entered into energy services agreements with Affiliated Engineers, Inc. for the districtwide upgrading of equipment to be more energy efficient; with EcoMotion to help with districtwide reduction of greenhouse gases; with ESA Project Company, LLC (aka Bloom Energy) to purchase a solar cell to be able to use solar energy generated during the day for nighttime purposes at City College; with Veolia (dba Enovity) for lighting upgrades that are brighter and more energy efficient at Mesa College; and with Western Mower for the districtwide upgrade of electric-powered landscape equipment.
  • Authorized the submission of an application for the construction of student housing at City College as it relates to California Senate Bill 169.
  • Awarded contracts to GEM Industrial Electric, Inc. for the Gymnasium Bleachers project at Mesa College; and to Sightlines, LLC to provide a districtwide Return on Physical Asset.
  • Authorized travel for City College Dramatic Arts Department students to attend the Kennedy Center American College theatre Festival from February 13-17, 2023 in Las Vegas; and for San Diego Mesa College School of Arts and Language study abroad program from June 2-30, 2023 in Paris, France.
  • Approved new or revised courses and programs following comments by Vice Chancellor Susan Topham and City College President Ricky Shabazz; the mileage reimbursement rate for employees who use their personal car for travel to 65.5 cents per mile, as established by the Internal Revenue Service; purchase orders completed during November 2022; and various personnel actions including the certification of short-term personnel service effective on or after January 20, 2023.
  • Authorized an agreement with healthcare agencies for use of clinical facilities by students enrolled in District health occupation programs.

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