When Barry A. Russell, sixth president of Las Positas College, stepped down in 2017, Vice President of Academic Services Roanna Bennie stepped up and smoothed the way as the college’s interim president. Although her contract in that role has been extended three times, Bennie recently announced that she would not be applying for the permanent position as the institution’s president.
It was an announcement that the faculty, students and the community met with sadness. Bennie has been a popular administrator, who ably guided the college through a period of major state-mandated changes to California’s community college system.
“With each new challenge, Ms. Bennie responded with a positive attitude, tackling each project head on,” says colleague Diane Brady. “People especially appreciate her frequent and open communications with the campus; she fosters an inclusive environment where everyone’s voice can be heard.”
It is hard to overstate the importance of Bennie’s respectful inclusiveness. Bennie brought clarity and steadfastness to a role that’s vital to the college, which in turn is vital to the community.
As we say farewell to a highly-esteemed interim president, we wish Bennie much continued success, and thank her for her role steering the college and community towards the future.