Two state senators on Monday called on Sanoma President Judy Sakaki to resign after a no-confidence vote against teachers amid a scandal over her alleged revenge on a former vice chancellor who reported sexual harassment against her husband.
“Teachers have spoken out, and it’s time to begin the healing process,” said Senators Bill Dodd (D-Napa) and Mike McGuire (D-Healdsburg). “President Sakaki must resign for the greater good of the university,”
Dodd represents a district that includes Sonoma State, and McGuire represents a neighboring district. McGuire graduated from university and was honored as its 2015 graduate.
Of the 629 eligible teachers, 278 attended. Those who lost confidence in the president won 173 against 105. Voting for teachers is not mandatory, but occurs when Sakaki faces increasing scrutiny amid the scandal.
This was reported by The Times that this year Sakaki signed a settlement agreement with former vice-chancellor Lisa Wolendorf, who reported allegations of sexual harassment against President Patrick McCallum’s husband and then claimed Sakaki took revenge on her. The calculation, prepared by the University of California, cost the university system $ 600,000, records show. It was refined a few weeks before former Chancellor Joseph I. Castro resigned because of hostility to allegations of sexual misconduct and bullying against the former vice president when Castro was president of Fresno.
Sakaki and McCallum, who broke up in recent weeks, deny the offense.
“I am grateful for the support I received and remember the concerns of those colleagues who cast their ballots in other ways.” Sakaki said in a statement Monday after a vote of no confidence.
Larry Camera, Sakaki’s spokeswoman, said lawmakers “are strong supporters of Sanoma State University, and we agree with them that the process of healing this very divided company should begin, but to say ‘teaching staff’ is a bit tense.” . spoke out ”when 56% of them stayed aside and only 27% of those who were entitled voted for“ no confidence ”.
During two open forums last week, teachers unofficially discussed whether to remain supportive of Sakaki or to oppose her leadership, which many said came under close scrutiny before The Times’ investigation last month. As reasons for the lack of trust, teachers pointed to a decrease in the number of applicants, a budget deficit and a lack of transparency and communication, as well as the fact that Sakaki was considering charges against her husband.
“Doctor. Sakaki’s promises to improve and change his administration’s practices are empty after nearly 6 years of mismanagement. How much more are we willing to give it a chance while Sonoma State is on the brink of a crisis from which it may not be able to emerge? ” 14 teachers wrote in an open letter.
Others argued that the system was to blame, not Sakaki. Without denying the accusations, some praised Sakaki as a creator of history, noting that she is the first American of Japanese descent in the country to head a four-year university.
Citing the Times investigation, 44 lawmakers recently called for an independent audit of how the CSU is investigating allegations in Section IX.