Mesalands ex-president placed on leave more than once

By Thomas Garcia

QCS Senior Writer

Mesalands Community College’s board of trustees was made aware of Mildred Lovato’s administrative leave at a California College before hiring her as president, said Association of Community College Trustee officials.

Lovato’s at-will contract as president of Mesalands was terminated on Oct. 31 by the board of trustees.

However, further investigation revealed this was not Lovato’s first time being on administrative leave from an institute of higher education.

In 2010 Lovato, then serving as the vice president of Instruction at Bakersfield College in Bakersfield Calif., was on voluntary administrative leave from February to the end of her contract on June 30, said Abe Ali, vice chancellor of human relations at Bakersfield.

Ali said Lovato was not placed on leave by the college’s board of trustees.

Ali said the board of trustees exercised their option not to renew Lovato’s contract during their March 3, 2010 board meeting. He said the decision not to renew was not for cause.

Ali said Lovato was made aware of the board’s decision not to renew her contract on March 4, 2010 and she did not return to campus.

The fact that Lovato was on leave at another college was not brought up before the board said J. Bronson Moore, trustee chair.

Moore said he could not recall the board being made aware of the leave by the ACCT or the college’s selection committee

However, a spokesperson for the ACCT said the board was informed about all information in relation to Lovato’s administrative leave at Bakersfield College.

Narcisa Polonio, ACCT’s executive vice president for education, research and board leadership services did screen the application submitted by Lovato when she applied for the position of president at Mesalands.

She said all of the findings from the review of her application and resume were relayed to the board of trustees and selection committee.

Hanna said Mesalands paid the ACCT $20,128 between Jan. 2010 and Sept. 2011, excluding registration and membership fees for their services in helping select a new college president.

A review of Lovato’s resume obtained by the Quay County Sun staff through an information request to Mesalands showed Lovato did list her time as an administrator at Bakersfield College.

Earlier this week, Lovato contacted the QCS. The QCS is awaiting her reply to a request for an interview.

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