The Peralta Community College District Board of Trustees met on Tuesday, October 12, 2021 for a very efficient and productive meeting. The full meeting was divided into three parts: a brief public session, a closed session, then the regular public meeting.
The meeting began at 4pm with a very brief public session of less than five minutes which can be viewed via Zoom here.
The Trustees then went into closed session. During the readout from closed session, it was noted that the Board unanimously approved the appointments of:
- Andrea Epps as the Director of Employee Relations and Diversity Programs at the District Office reporting to the Vice Chancellor of Human Resources & Employee Relations; and
- Gary Albury as the Interim Dean of Educational Success, Laney College, reporting to the Vice President of Student Services
Congratulations Andrea and Gary!
The final Public Session began on time at 6pm and ran less than two hours, concluding well before 8pm. The recording of this part of the meeting is available on YouTube here.
The Chancellor's Report portion of the meeting is also available as a separate short video (27 minutes) featuring updates by each of the college presidents. The president reports are available in Peralta Gems here:
- BCC (highlights of recent media coverage as noted by President Angélica Garcia)
- COA report by President Nathaniel Jones III
- Laney College by President Rudy Besikof
- Merritt College by President David M. Johnson
The Chancellor's Report also included a short presentation by Antoine Mehouelley, Chief Technology and Information Systems Officer, about the update to PeopleSoft Campus Solutions (https://sa.peralta.edu) that allows students to upload their vaccination information or their weekly COVID test results. (NOTE: students requesting an exemption should email their forms to email@example.com).
The meeting included a public hearing and action item for construction at 2118 Milvia Street in Berkeley, allowing Berkeley City College to expand beyond the current single building. The item was specifically to address CEQA (pronounced "see-kwa" which stands for California Environmental Quality Act) requirements. The new 2118 Milvia Street Expansion Project will be designed to accommodate eleven (11) general education classrooms, an anthropology laboratory, two (2) art studios, a communications classroom & laboratory, student services, learning resource center, learning communities, wellness center, restrooms, and office space for faculty & administration. There were no environmental concerns expressed, and Trustee Bonilla noted her pleasure in seeing solar power as part of the plans for the new structure. The Board unanimously approved to accept the CEQA findings which means the building project will continue to proceed.
The Board unanimously approved the Consent Calendar. One item of particular note in Consent Calendar was the acceptance of a $2.8 Million grant awarded to Berkeley City College! This grant is provided by CIRM, the California Institute of Regenerative Medicine, to provide paid internships for BCC students at Bay Area labs doing stem cell research. You can read more about the grant on the agenda item in BoardDocs and the press release posted in Peralta Gems.
There were two Action Items, both approved without any "nay" votes, included approval of the signatories for district bank accounts and the renewal of Microsoft Enterprise services for the District. Additional details of the meeting can be found in BoardDocs.
Before closing the meeting, Board President Dr. Cindi Napoli-Abella Reiss honored former Trustee Lynn Baranco with a Certificate of Recognition on his 90th birthday! The complete language for the birthday honor is listed below. Chief of Staff Royl L. Roberts was able to deliver the Certificate of Honor to Trustee Baranco.
Whereas: the Hon. Lynn Richard Baranco, was born on October 14, 1931 to the parents of Lela and Lester Baranco.Whereas: Mr. Baranco attended Vallejo Community College and subsequently transferred to San Jose State where he earned a Bachelor’s Degree. He later earned his Masters degree in Public Administration from UC Berkeley.Whereas: Mr. Baranco was awarded the opportunity to work in a war on poverty program that was geared toward low-income kids and helping them obtain employment in government offices. This was the beginning of Mr. Barranco's long career of reaching out to bring education and opportunity to youth.Whereas: Lynn was recruited by the Vice President of UC Berkeley to be the Director of Upward Bound, a program that guides low-income high school students to prepare them for opportunities for postsecondary education. The program was a success and was recognized for its best practices.Whereas: Lynn was rewarded with numerous promotions throughout his twenty-seven year career at the University of California, Berkeley. Prior to his retirement in 1993, Lynn became the Assistant to U.C. Berkeley Chancellor Michael Heymann. He served as Chancellor Heymann’s eyes and ears in the San Francisco Bay Area community.Whereas: Mr. Baranco served honorably on the Peralta Community College Board of Trustees for 12 years. During his tenure he utilized his skills to ensure that all students received a quality education at Peralta.Now Therefore Be It Recognized: that the Peralta Community College Board of Trustees wishes the Hon. Lynn Baranco a Happy 90th Birthday and thanks him for his distinguished services at Peralta.
Laney College President Rudy Besikof closed the meeting in the memory of long serving and much beloved retired Laney College dance faculty member Dr. Zakaraya Diouf, also known as "Papa Zak," who recently passed away. Dr. Diouf served the students of Laney for over 30 years before retiring right before the pandemic hit. Our condolences to his wife Naomi Diouf, also a retired Laney dance professor.