On June 3, at a special meeting of the Rancho Santiago Community College District (RSCCD) Board of Trustees, the Board voted to appoint Raúl Rodríguez, Ph.D., as chancellor of RSCCD, the third largest community college district in California. Dr. Rodríguez, who most recently served as the superintendent of the San Joaquin Delta Community College District and president of San Joaquin Delta College in Stockton, Calif., replaces Edward Hernandez, Jr., Ed.D., who retires on June 30 following 13 years as chancellor and a 21-year tenure at RSCCD as a district administrator and college president. The Board approved a three-year contract. Dr. Rodríguez, age 58, will earn $250,000 annually, a salary comparable with other community college chancellors in Orange County. His appointment will be effective on Monday, August 9.
“We were looking for a candidate with a proven track record as an instructional leader. In addition, we hoped to find an experienced chancellor with demonstrated skill in partnership development, the college accreditation process and reporting requirements, fiscal management, and the oversight of large-scale capital improvement and new construction campaigns,” explained Lawrence (Larry) Labrado, Board president. “Dr. Rodríguez has a statewide reputation as a community college leader, having served as a college president for more than 15 years. His professional experience demonstrates that he has the knowledge and skills to lead a district of our size and complexity,” said President Labrado.
In his most recent position with the San Joaquin Delta Community College District, Dr. Rodríguez initiated new strategic planning methods that resulted in the adoption of strategies to better address the learning needs of underserved student populations. He also implemented new processes to bolster employee engagement and participation, and created a new collaborative budget process to open communication among all constituency groups. In the area of instruction, Dr. Rodríguez increased the college district’s online course offerings, increased student enrollment, and developed programs to support the success and transfer rates of students enrolled in science and mathematics courses.
Moreover, Dr. Rodríguez has special expertise in compliance and reporting for statewide accreditation. He has led numerous accreditation evaluation teams, serving as the chair. Finally, he has directed an extensive capital improvement program at San Joaquin Delta College which is similar in size and scope to RSCCD’s Measure E. Through his leadership, San Joaquin Delta College constructed a new Math/Science Learning Center, library, student services building, athletic facilities and new athletic fields, as well as successfully completed renovation and modernization projects totaling $300 million. He pioneered many “go green” initiatives to reduce the college’s carbon footprint. His commitment to environmental responsibility and sustainability complements a priority of the RSCCD Board of Trustees.
In his current leadership post with the San Joaquin Delta Community College District, Dr. Rodríguez serves as a civic and community leader, representing the district and college on various national, statewide, regional and local Board of Directors. Recent leadership positions include service on the Board of Directors for the National Community College Hispanic Council, St. Joseph Medical Center and Goodwill Industries of the San Joaquin Valley.
Dr. Rodríguez holds a Ph.D. in Psychology from UCSC, a master’s in School and Applied Psychology from Fairfield University (Fairfield, CT) and a bachelor’s in Liberal Studies from Bowling Green State University (Bowling Green, OH). He is also a graduate of the Harvard Institute for Educational Management.