Trustees Alexander and Weeks receive fond farewell

Group photo. Moving right from kneeling student trustee Christopher Enders are Joan Alexander, Rick Alexander, Deanna Weeks, and Dr. John Weeks.

By William Dudley

CUYAMACA COLLEGE– It was “the end of an era” according to Dr. Cindy L. Miles, chancellor of the Grossmont-Cuyamaca Community College District.

November 16 marked the final day of a combined 26 years of service for two Board trustees of the GCCCD: Rick Alexander, trustee since 1990, and Deanna Weeks, trustee since 2004. Both chose not to stand for office in the recent election.

Their contributions were celebrated at a special reception prior to the regularly-scheduled board meeting on November 16. Both events were held at the Cuyamaca College Student Center, a building that did not exist when Alexander and Weeks first joined the board.

Among the guests were Grossmont Health District Board Member Barry Jantz; La Mesa councilman and Grossmont Foundation President Ernie Erwin; George Gastil, a Lemon Grove councilmember (and Grossmont history instructor), and representatives from the offices of Congressman Duncan D. Hunter and Assemblyman Joel Anderson.

Weeks and Alexander were invited to sit and listen to a parade of speakers sharing memories, praising their accomplishments, and expressing appreciation for them and their respective spouses (Dr. John Weeks and Joan Alexander). They were commended for their work in prioritizing the needs of students, lobbying and compaigning for changes in how government funds are allocated to community colleges, and for rallying the community to support bond issues that have physically transformed both Grossmont and Cuyamaca campuses.

They were also presented with various gifts. Chancellor Miles, on behalf of all district employees, presented Weeks and Alexander with framed photo collages. Michael Wangler, Academic Senate president at Cuyamaca, orated that body’s official resolutions recognizing, commending, and thanking Alexander and Weeks for their service. Grossmont student trustee Christopher Enders, after giving heartfelt thanks for what he called his “role models,” presented on behalf of the Associated Students at Grossmont College a computer briefcase for Alexander (noting that his old one had a broken handle). On behalf of Grossmont students, for Weeks he presented a donation in her name to the Aces Foundation , an East County nonprofit group that promotes animal welfare. The gift visibly moved Weeks.

After listening, Weeks and Alexander then had had a chance to respond. Weeks read a Zen fable from one of her favorite cookbooks. Alexander grabbed the mike and managed not to cry, almost, as he reflected on how the college district has grown and developed over the past 20 years.

Then it was time for the grand photo op of everyone there, and adjournment. Weeks and Alexander had to attend their last meeting.

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Dudley is a student in Media Comm 132

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