Interim director starts at college

By Jessica Cejnar / The Del Norte Triplicate

College of the Redwoods Trustees last week appointed an interim director to oversee the Del Norte campus while officials work to hire a permanent director by November or December.

Rory Johnson, an academic advisor at the Del Norte Education Center, will oversee the satellite campus until the position is permanently filled. CR Trustees appointed Johnson as interim director at their Aug. 12 meeting, according to spokesman Paul DeMark. CR's fall semester starts Monday.

Johnson will receive a salary of $5,301.47 per month effective Aug. 4, according to the Trustees' Aug. 12 agenda packet. He fills a position left open by former director Anita Janis, whose contract was terminated on June 30.

Janis's contract was terminated as part of a larger reorganization and restructuring of CR's staffing levels to fit "the current budget situation," officials said in April.

Meanwhile, the college stopped accepting applications for the permanent director position at Del Norte in mid-August, according to Michelle Anderson, CR's executive assistant to the president.

"The search has started, and the interview process usually takes about a month," she said. "We're planning on putting a permanent director at the Del Norte center between 90 and 120 days."

When asked if the community would be given an opportunity to meet the top candidates for the position in an open forum, Anderson said she didn't know. Open forums were conducted in 2012 when the CR Board of Trustees was hiring a new college president.

"The candidate that is selected would start some time in November or December," Anderson said, referring to the Del Norte position.

The college began making organizational changes in 2012 when the Accreditation Commission for Community and Junior Colleges imposed "show cause" status on CR, its most severe sanction.

In February 2013, the ACCJC removed the sanction, placing the college on probation and tasking its board and administration with ensuring the school's financial stability. The ACCJC required CR to have sufficient cash flow and reserves to maintain stability as well as document a funding base, financial resources and plans for financial development.

The ACCJC removed all sanctions for CR in February 2014.

Reach Jessica Cejnar at jcejnar@triplicate.com .

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