Thurman Speaks About Fired Chancellor Given $325,462 to Go Away

On Friday, 10 October 2003, the Arizona Republic reported that the Maricopa County Community College District (MCCCD) gave fired chancellor Fred Gaskin $325,462 to go away. Gaskin did give away his freedom to sue the District over his firing, but he left with no admission of wrongdoing and a hefty cash award. Given there was no wrongdoing, I fail to understand why he was fired. Alas, ignorance is not bliss.

The MCCCD stated: "But it's in the best interest of the community that we settle this and go on from here." I would like the MCCCD board to clarify what community they are referring to. I fail to see how these actions are in the best interests of anyone except Gaskin. Alas, ignorance is not bliss.

Upon firing Gaskin, the MCCCD board selected the new chancellor from a list containing only one choice; in other words, the new chancellor got the job by default with zero competition. Since the MCCCD only had once choice for the chancellorship, I fail to understand why they did not do an external job search. Alas, ignorance is not bliss.

The MCCCD board responsible for the Gaskin affair has made three critical errors: 1) they hired Gaskin; (2) they replaced Gaskin without doing an nation-wide search to find a 21st century leader; (3) they paid-off Gaskin now because they hope taxpayers (i.e. voters) will ignorantly and blissfully forget this snafu ever occurred. A rule of thumb is "three strikes you're out." Until the entire MCCCD board is replaced, I will vote no on the upcoming $1,000,000,000 bond issue scheduled for fall of 2004.

Author: G.D.Thurman [gthurman@gmail.com]
Created: 12 Oct 2003