The Telescope has decided to endorse Governing Board candidates Lee Dulgeroff and Norma Miyamoto.
The decision to make these endorsements has come after conducting interviews with each of the candidates in our newsroom.
We are emphatically confident that Dulgeroff will be a good steward for Palomar. He appeared to be the most willing and able candidate to reach out to all Palomar community members, most critically, in our opinion, students.
We were encouraged by what seemed to be a strong desire for deeper connections between the Board, and faculty and students. As well as his expressed desire to find avenues of communication with all stakeholders of the college.
Of all the candidates, he radiated the highest level of enthusiasm for community colleges and Palomar specifically. We also believe that his experience as chief of facilities planning and construction officer for the San Diego Unified School District will be a great asset for the Board, as it looks to address student and district needs for facilities in the coming years.
In regards to Miyamoto, we were pleased with her long history at Palomar College, as well as the importance she stressed upon working with the faculty and staff to move the college forward in a better decision.
In addition, Miyamoto promised to be open to both the Associated Student Government, attending meetings on a regular basis if they desire, and The Telescope, actively engaging with our student journalists.
However, it should be noted that not an insignificant number of our staff felt that Miyamoto’s primary point of concern would always rest with faculty and staff, and that she would not place enough importance on the opinions of students. Miyamoto did say she hopes that by improving faculty and staff morale it would propell student success, nonetheless, we are concerned that the attentiondriven toward them will detract from the student voice.
Please prove us wrong.
As for those we did not endorse, we felt that they fell short in one, or several critical areas of importance for our staff.
Governing Board incumbent, Mark Evilsizer, was under heavy consideration for our second endorsement. We were impressed with his many years of experience on the Board, and his plans to explore additional revenue sources for the college so that Palomar would not be as dependent upon the state as it is currently.
Most of all, however, we were pleased to hear his enthusiasm about addressing the needs of Latino students on campus by looking into providing them with their own center, such as the veterans and LGBTQ communities have.
Evilsizer is also the only candidate that has been continually tried and tested by our current staff in regards to being responsive to our journalists, and has shown himself to be cooperative in at least most of our efforts to reach out.
However, in the end, our decision rests upon finding new faces to lead the Governing Board in a different direction that will be drastically more communicative with the college community than it is now.
In his answer to our question about communicating with students, he cited the student trustee position on the Board, and their responsibilities with communicating to the Board student needs. Whereas we admire the importance Evilsizer stresses upon that position, we don’t believe it is enough to capture a comprehensive understanding about what student needs are on campus; especially seeing as how communication with that individual is limited to usually only on Board meeting per month.
Candidate Aimee Keith, while the staff agreed she was the most likable of the candidates, did not possess a strong history with Palomar, or an appropriate level of experience with college governance.
Former Governing Board Trustee, RoseMarie Dishman, we felt was lacking in the desire to change the Board and mold it into a more communicative body that would have increased interaction with students, faculty and staff on campus.
This November election has much at stake at both the federal and state level, but we must not forget the importance of this Governing Board election. The individuals who win these seats will directly, and greatly impact the quality of not only our education on campus, but also the quality of our college community as a whole.
It is critical that your voices are heard through the black ink bled onto the ballots this Nov. 6.
- Lee Dulgeroff: Linus Smith/The Telescope | All Rights Reserved