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Maricopa County Community College Faculty 'Embarrassed, Ashamed' Over Botched Chancellor Search

The search for a new chancellor for the Maricopa County Community College District was cancelled in mid-August after a governing board member was accused of interfering in the search.

The report released last week said governing board member Kathleen Winn tried discouraging a candidate for the top job. She also showed her support for a second candidate for the chancellor position.

"Embarrassed, ashamed," said Sasha Radisich, president-elect of the Maricopa Community Colleges Faculty Association. "How are we supposed to expect our students to respect us when our highest levels of leadership are showing these kinds of lack of ethics?"

Winn won the governing board seat two years ago, and there is little the association or the board can do to force her out ahead of the end of her term following the recommendations by the investigator in the case that she be removed from the hiring committee. The repercussions for influencing the hiring process and ultimately forcing the search to an end has not been made clear.

"Any person with integrity would immediately resign after this kind of a scandal. I suppose we’ll see if Ms. Winn chooses to do so," Radisich said.

Leadership at the 10 community college district has been turbulent. The last chancellor, Maria Harper-Marinick resigned ahead of her contract ending. That followed a vote of no confidence by faculty at nine of the 10 colleges.

Winn contacted KJZZ Sunday and said she would provide a statement. None has arrived so far.

EDITOR'S NOTE: KJZZ is licensed to the Maricopa Community College District.

Fronteras Desk senior editor Michel Marizco is an award-winning investigative reporter based in Flagstaff.