Thursday, May 3, 2007

The lost reference: it was "very positive"

I attended the Mathur "discrimination" trial today in LA. I'll have more time to report on it tomorrow—I hope! Been too busy tonight to write anything. In the meantime, here's a quick update.

This trial is partly about the infamous Poindexter dean hire of 2001, which looks seriously dodgy. Prima facie, Rodney Poindexter wasn't even remotely qualified for the deanship (of Health Sciences, PE and Athletics at Irvine Valley College)—he had no supervisory or administrative experience—while Cely was amply qualified. And yet Mathur hired Poindexter, who turned out to be grossly incompetent, unstable, and, according to some, a danger to female employees.

That Raghu sure can pick 'em!

Part of the hiring process is the checking of references. All reference checks require documentation. They must be done using a special form provided by HR. So when the hiring committee forwarded three candidates, the chair of the committee (then-VPI Glenn Roquemore) went off (by himself, as it turns out; in court, he said nobody volunteered to go with him) and did the reference checks using those forms.

Today in court, the jury had a chance to look at them—filled out by Glenn Roquemore re Poindexter's 3 references.

It soon became clear that the three "references" for Poindexter were decidedly unimpressive (one was a former student). One "reference" declined to offer an unqualified recommendation for the P-man. These refs added up to practically nothing.

During the second-level interview of Poindexter, Mathur evidently got it into his head to ask Poindexter for a fourth reference. (That's what he said today, under questioning from Cely Mora's attorney, Carol Sobel.) That's odd.

And he didn't ask the other two applicants for a further reference. Strange, ain't it?

So, says Mathur, Poindexter gave him a name and a number.

Mathur now claims that he called the reference, and (surprise!) "it was very positive."

Naturally, he used the required form. It sure would be great if we could look at that form, find out who had such great things to say about Poinsie. We wanna read the superlatives for ourselves!

OK, so where's the form? Can we see it?

Today, Mathur acknowledged that that form has not been produced.

I assume that means that it disappeared. (Got any other interpretations out there?)

Garsh, that's odd! Doncha think? And it was so very positive, too!

TOMORROW: closing arguments. The jury goes off to make its decision.


Anonymous said...

Raghu made the whole thing up, didn't he?

Anonymous said...


Raghu bent the rules in order to get what he wanted.

He violated the godawful hiring policy that he created.

Anonymous said...

Raghu didn't BEND the rules - he BROKE them in order to get what he wanted.

No wonder he protected that guy once he was hired - he was invested in Poindexter's success because of his unethical behavior - so he put others at risk in order to cover up his actions.

Other people should sue his ass too.

If the district wants to continue to pour taxpayers' money down the drain, they can keep on hiring him.

Do the trustees really think behavior like this from a college president and chancellor is even remotely acceptable?

Anonymous said...

Glen violated the policy too - everyone knows you need to have someone in the room with you in order to do the reference checks - this protects the committee members and the candidates.

These guys just do what they want to get what they want - and here it was done in order to avoid hiring Cely.

How did Glen defend this decision?

Anonymous said...

I'm sure Glen doesn't remember any of this.......

Anonymous said...

Isn't it illegal to lie on the stand when you're under oath?

Anonymous said...

Yours has become the first blog I read in the morning. Thanks for a fine job of reporting, Chunk. This is better than one of those TV reality shows.

--100 miles down the road from you

Anonymous said...

yes, DISSENT is like Survivor meets Law and Order with a dose of Room 22 thrown in on the side.

Thanks for telling it like it is...

Anonymous said...

OUT - out now.

Raghu lied and he continues to lie. He makes stuff up. And when he can't do that, he violates his own policy to get what he wants.

Let's have a vote of confidence in the guy. Now.

I can't wait to hear what platitudes he offers up during commencement in a couple weeks - a steady stream of Bartlett's Famous Quotations about honesty and perseverance. The gall of the guy.

Anonymous said...

Pretty indefensible stuff, asking for ANOTHER reference during the final interview when the other references didn't say what Raghu wanted them to say.

I bet he smiled on the stand, didn't he?

I hope the jury holds him accountable but even if they don't (I don't have a great deal of faith in juries these days) - it's great that this issue has finally been fully aired - and oooh boy does it stink.

yeah, how can he look faculty and staff in the face after this?

how can the Board continue to pretend everything is okay?

Anonymous said...

Snorrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr!!!!!!!! You people are borrrrrrrring


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