The faculty reaffirmed its support for the current Academic Senate leadership as it re-elected the incumbent slate in a decisive victory against their challengers, a slate which included former two-time senate president Eduardo Cairo, who has campaigned for the senate presidency each of the last four years.

The final vote tally released to faculty last Thursday showed all winning slate members received at least 59 percent support of the voting faculty. The same slate won the presidency by only four votes in last year’s election.

Faculty voted last week to retain the senate executive committee of President Valerie Foster, natural sciences; Vice President Shelagh Rose, languages and ESL; Secretary Stephanie Fleming, performing arts; and Treasurer Jay Cho, math and computer science.

“[W]e believe we have made significant progress in helping PCC move forward by encouraging diversification in shared governance, improving collegiality, and addressing the accreditation recommendations to get PCC off probation. We are honored to be awarded the opportunity to continue this work,” Foster wrote in an email to faculty on Monday.

Their opposition was a slate that fielded Cairo, social sciences, for president, Dave Cuatt, engineering and technology, for vice president, Tim Melnarik, English, for secretary and Lauren Arenson, social sciences, for treasurer.

In an email after the results were announced, the challengers thanked their colleagues who voted for them and vowed to continue working toward a senate that is “responsive to faculty,” adding that their support in a losing effort gave them a “mandate” to do so.

In a response addressed to “those who did not win the Senate election,” mathematics instructor Matthew Henes expressed his hope that “a perceived mandate from a minority of voters would not interfere with the focus and collegiality that we were supporting in voting for the incumbents.”

“It is my sincere hope that you will find ways to channel your well-intentioned energy into continuing the healing process we have been enjoying,” Henes wrote.

The Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges in their accreditation report last June recommended that the school “model collegial communication, specifically among the Board, President, and Academic Senate,” an issue that was at the heart of many other accreditation recommendations.

Foster in her email said that her slate would reach out to the opposing slate this week.

“Our goal is to move forward as a unified faculty, so I think it is important for our groups to meet to discuss our different perspectives,” the email read.


This story has been updated.

22 Replies to “Academic Senate re-elects incumbent executive committee”

  1. Are these actual comments from PCC community?
    Supporters of Valerie, Stephanie, Jay and Rose exhibit an alarming immaturity.
    God help the college if these commenters are typical of their “team.”
    If their level of intellectual excellence is stuck in Trump Mode, it speaks volumes.
    The horror–the Rocha slide into the gutter has quite a bit of unsavory momentum.

    Yes, remember Nixon.

    1. Disgusted, you are an imbecile. Rocha is a piece of garbage, and is the only correct statement in your vapid response, but so are you. What does Trump have to do with anything?

      1. I agree with An Upset Faculty Member. The remark by Disgusted shows complete stupidity. I’m sure this poltroon is as big of a loser as Arenson is.

    2. As an adjunct faculty member in the Social And Behavioral Sciences Department, I am disgusted with Arenson. Not only does she gossip constantly and speak ill of others, she carries on inappropriately with male students, and acts inappropriately with male faculty as well. I’m glad she was not elected in this last election; hopefully she will learn to behave more modestly around men and refrain from being a gossip. What adds to my disgust is that she’s married!

      1. Everyone in Behavioral Sciences already knows this, she just thinks she’s clever. Reminds me of a song I use to sing when I had to much to drink, “looking for love in all the wrong places.”

      2. Faculty member, there are a number of trolls like this on campus who are “looking for love in all the wrong places.” The trick is not to marry them, or have your significant other find out about them. If they do, you can always site temporary insanity, how else could you justify being with them. Yikes!

  2. I’m glad Foster and her team won. Castro and the social derelicts he ran with are worthless and untrustworthy. Maybe now, Castro and the rest of his dullards will get new personalities and refrain from boring everyone on campus with their mindless dribble.

    1. Anthro Prof you have spoken for a majority of us on campus. I get tired of seeing the likes of them on campus; they’re very disingenuous with their motives, and you have to wonder, when do they teach?

    2. Cairo and the rest of the creeps, and mentally deranged individuals he ran with were very arrogant the week prior to the election. They were telling anyone who’d listen they were going to win and by a large margin; only to be soundly beaten. Serves them right for being jerks! Good for you Foster!

    1. I’d still rather have Foster and her team. The alternative would have been far worse for us. Cairo and his team could do a solid remake of “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” without even having to get into character. I mean several of them are loons!

      1. Although Cairo reminds me of an immature version of Rocha, Arenson reminds me of a lobotomized Sybil, and Cuatt and Melnarik round out the quartet as Beavis and Butthead.

      2. “A union member” you are so right! I’ve been a professor going on 15 years at PCC. During that time I’ve recognized how Prof. Arenson is slowly succumbing to becoming a complete “nut job.” Those of us who know her think she has a bad personality and give her a wide berth. I’ve been privy to the union hierarchy when they complain about her; and it is not complimentary. Why anyone would place her on a slate speaks volumes about them. Wake up!

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