City College of San Francisco's Board of Trustees selected Mark Rocha last week as the next chancellor of the college.
Rocha will become the college's first Latino chancellor. He previously led Pasadena City College from 2010 to 2014 and was president of West Los Angeles College four years prior to that. The trustees approved a $310,500 contract for Rocha.
"Dr. Rocha is a strong, experienced and accomplished leader, and we are pleased to welcome him to CCSF," said Thea Selby, president of the trustee board, in a news release. "His presence as permanent chancellor will be a stabilizing force for the community, and we look forward to working together to continue strengthening the college."
But Rocha is a controversial pick, especially with CCSF faculty members. The American Federation of Teachers, which represents CCSF faculty, had voiced its opposition to Rocha's hiring.
"Some are saying that hiring Rocha is a calculated risk and that he's the only candidate with experience. It's not a calculated risk to hire Mark Rocha -- it's a guaranteed disaster. His record makes it clear that he stirs up trouble wherever he goes and is no friend to students, faculty or staff. The board can and should hire an interim chancellor while they put in the work to find a candidate for the chancellor position that we can trust," a statement from the faculty union said.
Rocha's tenure at Pasadena was controversial, and he was criticized for his leadership style. Faculty leaders voted no confidence in him twice and were considering a third vote before he resigned from the position.
CCSF is only beginning to emerge from the turmoil of the last few years of money woes, declining enrollment and a longstanding accreditation crisis. Since that crisis in 2012, the college has experienced leadership turnover, including three interim chancellors, a permanent chancellor and a special trustee appointed by the state. Rocha would be replacing Interim Chancellor Susan Lamb.