Interim board president appointed after resignation


Denis Perez / The Advocate

Contra Costa Community College District Ward I Trustee John Marquez was elected president of the Governing Board on Monday after the resignation of former president Timothy Farley.

By Michael Santone, Associate Editor

At a special meeting held Monday at the District Office in Martinez, the Contra Costa Community College District Governing Board voted 5-0 to approve Trustee John Marquez as interim board president.

The action also approved the move of Secretary Gary Walker-Roberts to interim vice president and Vicki Gordon to interim secretary.

The reconstruction of the Governing Board comes in lieu of the sudden resignation of former president Tim Farley two weeks ago.

In a Feb. 26 letter addressed to Marquez and the Governing Board, Farley resigned effective immediately stating the reason as “a pressing personal family matter.”

“It is with a heavy heart that I write this letter officially resigning,” Farley stated. “It has been an honor and privilege to serve the students and families of Contra Costa County as well as the residents of Ward III.”

Marquez who was vice president, has been president of the board twice in the past.

A new Governing Board member to represent Ward III will be elected in November.

“Farley’s position is going to be open,” Marquez said. “Instead of us appointing someone, someone is going to have to run in his ward.”

“We will just work this way until the election in November,” Marquez said.

“In working for the board, a lot of the work falls on the shoulders of the president and the secretary. The vice president is there in case the president isn’t there,” he said. “So me being president now, I’m going to have more responsibilities.”

Farley had 10 months left in his term, which expires in December 2018, and was expected to run for re-election as he began to fundraiser for his 2018 campaign.

Governing Board member Greg Enholm said, “It was sad, but I talk regularly to him and I understand his situation. He does have a full time job.

“I hear the stress that he was under and when you have a family emergency come up as he did, sometimes you look at that and ask yourself, do I need to be 100 percent committed to my work, 100 percent committed to my family or 100 percent to being an elected official?”

Enholm, who has known Farley for over a decade, said he has been a big supporter of his.

“I talked to Tim (Farley) afterward and he felt he made the right decision and I agree with him,” Enholm said. “I was not surprised, given I’ve known him for a decade and he’s been on the board for almost four years. He made a decision that many other people made.”

Farley’s resignation was announced at the Feb. 28 Governing Board meeting where he was not in attendance.

Marquez sat as the acting president as he announced Farley’s resignation through the letter, which he read aloud.

Board members expressed their deep sentiments of sadness at Farley’s sudden resignation.

Board Trustee Gary Walker-Roberts said, “I was shocked that he decided to give his resignation. He just became president and I think he’s the shortest running president on the board. But we are moving forward. We have a job to do and it’s not the first time the board has faced sudden changes.”

Ward III encompasses an area including Martinez, Concord and Pleasant Hill.