Contra Costa College campus group defends president on administrative leave

With less than one year on the job as Contra Costa College President Dr. Katrina Vanderwoude has been placed on administrative leave, along with interim Vice Presidents Susan Kincade and Carsbia Anderson, pending an investigation.

Contra Costa College Chancellor Fred Wood would only reveal in a statement that this stems from "personnel matters".

“Complaints and allegations may be erroneous and are unfounded,” said a member of the African American Staff Association. 

The African American Staff Association held a press conference Wednesday calling this investigation a sham.

“The main concern here is that it’s not a fair process. The concern is that the chancellor Fred Wood has simply gone by anonymous complaints to put Katrina Vanderwoud on administrative leave when in fact we knew there were people causing problems long before her,” said CCC professor Manu AmPim.

Professor AmPim says Vanderwoude is accused of reverse racism and age discrimination. Last November, the college received backlash for its search to replace the vice president when allegations surfaced that potential candidates were accused of sexual harassment years before. 

“The reverse racism is outlandish,” said AmPim.

Another professor also spoke out, detailing when investigators approached him with questions about Vanderwoude.

“I was asked whether I had perceived our president Dr. Vanderwoude acting in a discriminatory way toward older white women. I found that question troubling. I don’t think that would have been asked if she were a white man,” said Jefrey Michels, Executive Director of United Faculty at Contra Costa Community College district. 

We reached out to chancellor Fred Wood regarding the AASA's concerns and allegations. He says "Since this is a personnel matter I cannot comment further beyond what has been provided in the District statement."

Now the AASA is calling on the NAACP to conduct a third party investigation into this matter. 
“We want to make sure that we investigate every aspect of the allegations,” said Cora Ward, President of the El Cerrito NAACP branch. When we asked Chancellor Wood if he would cooperate with an NAACP investigation he said “To date, I have not been contacted by representatives of the NAACP.  I am always willing to meet and hear concerns from the communities which we serve.”