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The student news site of Los Medanos College


The student news site of Los Medanos College


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We need a chancellor for the long haul

The Contra Costa Community College District will soon appoint its fifth chancellor since 2016. It’s time for the district to choose a steady hand to take the helm – and Interim Chancellor Mojdeh Mehdizadeh is the right person for the job.

Mehdizadeh first entered the district as a Diablo Valley College student in 1987, graduating two years later before eventually teaching speech and communication at her alma mater. She’s worked for the district since 1994, serving in multiple roles including assessment center technician and adjunct faculty of speech communication.

Since 1998, Mehdizadeh has served in a district-wide capacity in positions such as executive vice president for technology systems and educational services, institutional research workforce and economic development and president of Contra Costa College, as well as interim chancellor of the district twice since 2018, including the last two and a half years.

The previous two permanent chancellors, Bryan Reece and Fred Wood served short tenures. Wood retired at the end of his third year on the job while Reece resigned amid controversy after less than two years. In between Reece and Wood, Eugene Huff served as interim chancellor for less than a year in 2020. In replacement of Reece, the district appointed Mehdizadeh as interim chancellor and she’s kept the position until the present day.

The 4CD needs a chancellor for the long haul because the turnover in district leadership is not giving its three colleges and the 45,404 students they serve enough stability.

There hasn’t been a long-term chancellor ever since Helen Benjamin retired in December of 2016 after 11 years. Mehdizadeh has the track record that 4CD is looking for in a permanent chancellor. She has already proven her worth for the future. She’s invested her entire professional career into this district, showing what loyalty and support for the district should look like.

It’s been tough to determine who would be someone to take this district into the future and it’s time to promote someone from within that merits the top position. 

“The reality is every time we implement a product or piece of technology, we’ve got to stay committed to it for a period of time because here’s what happens. Tomorrow will be the next shiny thing,” said Mehdizadeh. “I’ve never felt like it was the right time that I was the best tooled to bring the district to its next level. I feel like this is the first time that I genuinely believe I am the most qualified candidate to serve as your next permanent chancellor.”

The district has already spent 30 years training and cultivating the perfect candidate. Now, it’s time to give her the job she’s earned.

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