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Community colleges name acting chancellor

September 12, 2012 |  5:52 pm

Skinner-scott

The governing board of California’s community colleges Wednesday announced the appointment of an acting chief to replace retiring Chancellor Jack Scott. The search for a permanent successor is underway.

Erik Skinner, who now serves as executive vice chancellor for programs, will take over for Scott when he leaves office Friday after serving for three years at the helm of the nation’s largest system of higher education.

In his current post, Skinner oversees academic affairs, student services, facilities planning, research and other programs for the 2.4 million-student, 112-campus system.

He has played key roles in several system-wide policy initiatives, including reforms aimed at improving student success and development of a new two-year degree intended to streamline transfers between community colleges and the California State University system.

“As executive vice chancellor, Erik has a great understanding of the day-to-day working of the office, but also shares in the vision of the agency, which is to provide a skilled workforce for the state,” Scott said in a statement. “I have every confidence in Erik’s ability to lead the chancellor’s office and system during this transition period.”

Before joining the chancellor’s office in 2007, Skinner served in the Office of the Secretary of Education, advising the governor on K-12 and higher education policy and in the California Legislative Analyst’s Office, specializing in school finance and Proposition 98.

Skinner, 44, received a bachelor’s degree in history from Grinnell College in Iowa and a master’s in public policy from the University of Michigan.

The board announced the appointment during its meeting at San Diego City College. A search committee conducted interviews with candidates for the permanent job Tuesday in closed session and expects to fill the post by the end of September.

Scott announced his departure in March. He previously served in the California Legislature for 12 years and as president of Pasadena City College.

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-- Carla Rivera

Photo: Erik Skinner, executive vice chancellor of programs and acting chancellor, presents Chancellor Jack Scott with a bronze plaque at Scott's farewell reception on Aug. 21. Credit: California Community Colleges chancellor's office

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