1. Old Dissents (and ‘Vines) to be archived at UCI.
Not for the first time, we’ve heard that folks doing archiving at UCI wish to archive the Dissent. We’ll likely pursue that this time. We’ll keep you posted.
2. NANCY PADBERG NO LONGER WORKING FOR THE COUNTY?
There’s been talk that Nancy Padberg no longer works for John Williams in his job at the County. Anybody know anything about that?
Here’s some background:
Back in 2002, John Williams, a former bailiff, ran for county “public administrator.” With tongue firmly in cheek (or no?), the OC Weekly endorsed Williams:
Slim Pickin’s: Hold your nose and vote for these few good candidates
PUBLIC ADMINISTRATOR: John S. Williams
Four people are running for public administrator, the county official who manages the estates of losers who die without wills or anyone willing to handle their affairs. Mark your ballot for John S. Williams, who has no experience for the job (he’s a retired sheriff’s sergeant). He also sits on the SOCCCD board of trustees, thanks to heavy backing from the Christian Coalition and since-deposed leaders of a corrupt college teachers union. Williams has served during a tumultuous period that saw the district nearly go belly-up, a stinging state accreditation report, the departure of several longtime employees (including two chancellors and scores of presidents at Saddleback and Irvine Valley colleges), the obliteration of policies that allowed faculty and staff to have a say in running their campuses, and the fireworks that surrounded allegations that a since-retired trustee (and Williams chum) loved Nazis. South County voters, who are apparently as blind to all the crap going on in the district as they are to Christian fundamentalists’ assault on all of public education, keep electing Williams. So it’s up to the rest of us to help our southern comrades with a three-pronged strategy: elect Williams public administrator, eat your wills, and tell your heirs to butt out when the county comes looking for someone to administer your estate. Bury this guy in so much work he’ll be forced to step down from the college district. Our kids—even our Ecstacy-juiced, Teva-wearing, Girls Gone Wild-watching college kids—deserve better. (OC Weekly, March 1-7, 2002)
Shockingly, the post-corruption faculty union endorsed Williams too.
(Incidentally, I ran across a page of information that Williams provided to the League of Women Voters of California during his 2002 campaign. Williams here lists his “priorities,” including that he will “OPPOSE EL TORO AIRPORT.” Now tell me, what’s this Corpse Patrol job of his got to do with the airport? Exactly nothing.
Williams also lists his “key endorsements.” Among them: “Armando Ruiz, Coast College Dist. Board President.”
You’ll recall that Mr. Ruiz was one of the few district faculty low enough to play ball with Raghu Mathur and the Board Majority. Not long after he was transferred from Saddleback to Irvine Valley, he became an administrator, a notoriously bad administrator. Naturally, Raghu loved 'im.
Well, while Armando was messing up our colleges, he was messing things up over at the Coast District, where he's been a trustee for years. Recently, he acquired infamy owing to a scam he was running against the taxpayer. I'll let the Committee to Recall Ruiz do the explaining:
“Ruiz has fleeced taxpayers, collecting TWO years of retirement for every ONE year he worked. He also ‘double-dipped,' and now collects BOTH a Board salary and a retired Board member's pension for the same position. In addition, Ruiz deceived voters by using a false ballot designation on last November’s ballot, and has charged taxpayers over $107,000 for ‘conference’ travel during his term—while classrooms are begging for books and supplies.”
While we’re on the subject of boondogglery, I seem to recall some maneuvering at the county that resulted in Williams turning his tiny post into a real gravy train. Does anyone have info on that? Let us know.)
Well, in November of 2002, Williams was succcessful: he won the “Public Administrator" post. But, not long after he started his new job, he caught the attention of the Weekly again:
Anyone who has attended meetings of local boards, councils and commissions is used to the superfluous public ass-kissing elected officials give one another. Taking such manufactured passion to new depths is the SOCCCD board of trustees, which governs Saddleback and Irvine Valley colleges. At a recent meeting, board president Don Wagner paused at one point to congratulate trustee Tom Fuentes for being re-elected to a 10th term as Orange County Republican Party chairman. Fuentes had earlier toasted fellow trustee John Williams for being sworn in as Orange County’s new public administrator—the part-time elected official who oversees conservancies for feeble-minded folks who can’t care for themselves and have no next-of-kin.
But what Fuentes did next says a lot about Orange County Republicans, county government and that particular school board: he congratulated fellow trustee Nancy Padberg for being appointed to Williams’ professional staff. The same board awarded a plum district administrative job to the trustee Padberg replaced [namely, Teddi Lorch]—even though her qualifications were questionable. The funny thing...is Williams was first swept into his trustee seat as a reformer who would protect South County taxpayers by ending rampant cronyism on the part of faculty and administrators.
Dissident trustee David Lang has long complained of cronyism practiced by Fuentes, Williams, Padberg, Wagner and Dorothy Fortune—Republicans who cast identical votes so often you’d think they trained at the old Soviet Politburo. We would have asked Padberg if she foresees any conflicts, but she was too busy nominating her new boss Williams to a seat on the California Community College Trustees board of directors. —Matt Coker, OC Weekly, 3/14/03
—Well, the days in which Fuentes, Williams, Wagner, Fortune, and Padberg voted as a block are long over, and not merely because Dot “Central Cal” Fortune resigned (amid allegations that she no longer lived in Orange County). Padberg has revealed a reasonable streak—and a dislike of Raghu Mathur—and one suspects that she has thus incurred the wrath of Fuentes and the rest of his Mathur-loving trustee contingent, which seems to include John Williams.
Well, the word is that Padberg no longer works for Williams. Anybody know anything about that? Again, let us know! —CW