The Eastern New Mexico News - Serving Clovis, Portales and the Surrounding Communities

By Steve Hansen
The Staff of The News 

Clovis Community College president placed on administrative leave


Last updated 8/6/2022 at 1:19pm

Courtesy photo

Charles Nwankwo

CLOVIS – The president of Clovis Community College was placed on paid administrative leave Wednesday by the college's board of trustees.

Charles Nwankwo will remain on paid leave until an investigation is completed of alleged misconduct that led to letters and resolutions of "no confidence" against him in early May by several employee groups, according to Lora Harlan, board president.

The board's decision followed an executive session at the end of the board's regular monthly meeting Wednesday.

The board voted 4 to 0 to place Nwankwo on leave, with board member Terry Martin not casting a vote.

The board turned down a motion to delete the executive session and action on Nwankwo's status from the agenda early in the meeting.

Board member Carolyn Spence made the motion because, she said, any action on Nwankwo's status should be not be taken until the investigation is complete.

The board's vote on Spence's motion was 3-2, with Jan Bradburn voting with Spence, but with Martin, Harlan and Laura Leal voting against it.

The board will meet at 8 a.m. Monday to discuss and possibly take action on appointing an interim president, according to the meeting's agenda.

An Albuquerque law firm, Cuddy and McCarthy, has been conducting the investigation into Nwankwo's alleged misconduct since late May.

Nwankwo did not return a phone call made Wednesday seeking his response to being placed on leave. He has repeatedly declined to talk about the actions against him.

Allegations against Nwankwo include that he "has shown to be an incompetent administrator and has demonstrated a remarkable degree of unprofessionalism in conduct and behaviors."

In his two years at CCC's helm, the letters to board members state, Nwankwo "has done much damage to the operation and climate of Clovis Community College," adding that the college "cannot fulfill its mission with him at the helm."

The letters further allege that Nwankwo has shown "behaviors and actions that demean employees" in private and in public.

The board on Wednesday also heard from Nwankwo that a vote on accepting a redistricting plan that mirrors a plan that the Clovis Municipal School Board seems to favor will be on the board's Sept. 7 agenda.

Nwankwo read a statement saying that matching the two districts would "lessen confusion among voters."

The option was one of five redistricting options presented by Research and Polling, the Albuquerque firm that studied districting for both CMS and the college, at a study session on June 29.

In other action on Wednesday, the CCC board also

• Heard a presentation about CCC's recognition for its implementation of a program designed to assure that opportunities to incorporate computer literacy and fluency are included in college programs and general education classes.

• CCC received recognition from the program's sponsor Achieving the Dream (ATD), with guidance from the program's coaches, according to Robin Kuykendall, CCC's vice president of enrollment management and student affairs. Kuykendall said CCC's efforts were recognized at ATD's Rural Institute in Albany, N.Y., earlier this summer.

ATD works with more than 300 community colleges nationwide to "achieve more equitable, economically vibrant communities," according to its website.

• Approved a list of graduates for the summer term, including 56 associate degree earners, 12 certificate of completion earners and 22 who earned certificates of achievement.

• Approved an inventory report showing the college has more than $6 million in fixed assets, after about $4 million in depreciation is figured in.

• Approved the purchase of 126 computers and associated equipment for $118,031,90, using funds previously allocated for that purpose.

"That's a lot of computers for a little money," Spence said.

• In a memorandum to the board, Norman Kia, vice president of information technology and operations, stated the new computers will ensure that faculty and staff are on stable, up-to-date platforms for implementing a resource planning system campus-wide

• Approved financial actions for the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2022, which ended June 30.

• The next regular meeting is scheduled for 8 a.m. Sept 7 in the board room.


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