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Cerritos College Administrator Bob Chester Abruptly Resigns

Wednesday January 29, 2014, 1:22 p.m.

By Brian Hews and Brian Hews

Robert “Bob” Chester has resigned his position as President of the Cerritos College Faculty Senate as well as the Coordinator of Judicial Affairs for the campus in a stunning email to members of the Board of Trustees and other campus officials on Wednesday morning.

Chester has been a controversial and divisive figure at the Norwalk based campus for the past several years.

Chester in his letter, obtained by HMG-CN, stated: “Colleagues, friends, and others: It has become absolutely clear to me that because of the continued personal attacks against  me – some you know about, and some you do not – that it is no longer possible for me to effectively represent faculty members in the senate or to handle matters in Judicial Affairs.”

“I am stepping down from both positions as of today,” Chester wrote. He went on to state: “Thank you to everyone who has supported me, and I sincerely wish you all the best.  As always, Bob.”

Chester will maintain his position as a Professor in the English Department.

Currently, Chester is one of the key players in a criminal probe of former Marine veteran Daniel Beckham who is now facing 12 felony counts in a grade rigging scheme.  Beckham has maintained his innocence in the matter in several past interviews with Hews Media Group-Community Newspaper.

Chester has been a lightning rod on the campus during the past years.

Last year, HMG-CN reported that Chester went on a public rant during a meeting when he called Cerritos College a “homophobic institution.”  His comments were quickly denounced by several students, and many called for him resignation.

On Tuesday, Chester apparently went on another “vulgar” rant during a meeting of the Faculty Senate and his remarks were immediately denounced by Philosophy professor Ted Stoltz.

Stoltz wrote Chester after the meeting the following email, that was obtained by HMG-CN.

“At today’s faculty senate meeting I was deeply offended by your vulgar attempt to explain why there would be no cookies available (I won’t relate the “joke”),” Stoltz wrote.

“I don’t care how you speak in private, but I do care as a colleague how my senate president addresses a public meeting.  Sexist humor in such a forum is not acceptable,” Stolze continued.

“Moreover, near the end of the meeting you expressed your view that the current Board of Trustees is threatening the very existence of our school.  This is at least the third time I have heard you publicly engage in such polemics, and, frankly, I am tired of them,” Stolze wrote.

“Although I do not make a habit of uncritically supporting anyone in a position of authority, I cannot for the life of me understand why you are so threatened by the new Board of Trustees.  This Board, like any, has its flaws, but it is more diverse and representative of the communities that our college serves than any I have seen since I’ve taught here (ten years).  Clearly we have a difference of judgment.  But that’s not the issue,” Stolze said.

“I don’t care as a colleague whether or not you criticize board members in private, but I do care how my senate president addresses a public meeting.  Trashing duly elected officials in a public meeting over which you preside is not acceptable,” Stoltze stated in his letter.

“I shall unfailingly support you or any other colleague who exercises his or her academic freedom in any campus forum.  But I shall not hesitate to exercise my own when I believe that a colleague has overstepped the bounds of responsible speech,” Stolze concluded.

HMG-CN will be publishing an audio version of Chester’s remarks from the Faculty Senate Meeting as soon as it becomes available from Cerritos College officials.

 

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15 Responses to Cerritos College Administrator Bob Chester Abruptly Resigns

  1. A Consumer of News Reply

    February 6, 2014 at 6:45 am

    Wow, I think thou doth protest too much. A couple questions were asked. Why not answer the questions? Economy & Hews are NO Woodward & Bernstein. All I was asking is to publish the WHOLE story. A biased, one-sided account with no definitive proof is NOT award winning.

    • Editor Reply

      February 6, 2014 at 10:28 am

      Look we are a newspaper, let us do or job w/o judging us.
      Of course we asked form comment from Chester, he refused. After we ran the article they “lawyered-up” and hired an investigator, then sent out an email telling everyone involved not to talk to us. We asked if they took his phone, they did not, interesting. Now they are delaying a public records request we made. Read about that tomorrow.

  2. Appalled Student Reply

    February 3, 2014 at 2:56 am

    Mr. Economy and Mr. Hews,

    Yet again, I am absolutely astonished by your unprofessional “journalism” practices. For about a year now, I’ve been following your articles on Cerritos College. And as an extremely involved and informed student I must say, you’ve really outdone yourselves in your attempts to alleviate your hate boner for Mr. Chester. It is truly appalling. From the days when you’ve glorified the disgraceful JP Drayer, to the days you’ve backed up D.Beckham without a shred of evidence, to your new and likely false/exaggerated allegations against him, it’s been regrettable to see you single out and *slander* one of my most highly regarded administrators. I simply do not understand how journalists such as yourselves can stoop to such National Inquirer levels just to make a headline. It is absolutely disgusting to see such yellow journalism and such outlandish, unchecked accusations in the community paper of such a highly regarded city.
    Your twisted newspaper is a joke and it hurts to see people take your “news” as fact. I wish I could do something, anything about that. This paper pains me personally.
    Three years of serving on committees and as a student representative in and around the community have let me understand just how impressive Cerritos College and it’s leadership team are, but every time I read your paper, I die a little thinking about all the people who now believe that Cerritos is actually run by an uneducated circus of crooked administrators.
    So please, stop with the unethical practices.
    Leaking emails out of context and without permission is unjust.
    Twisting words and situations is dishonest.
    Libel is malicious.

    Sincerely,
    A very sad reader and student

    • Editor Reply

      February 4, 2014 at 6:18 pm

      Thanks for your comment. This is exactly what people wrote to us when we first broke the Assessor Noguez, Wendy Greuel, Central BAsin, and many other stories. We just report the news and let our readers decide.

      • A Consumer of News Reply

        February 5, 2014 at 9:19 am

        Just because you’ve had these complaisance before from readers does not justify the publishing of allegations that are presented as fact when it is just supposition. Responsible reporting USED to mean something. I

        • Editor Reply

          February 5, 2014 at 4:50 pm

          We have had four other people come forward, including a school board member.
          Why did Chester resign?
          Why doesn’t he issue a sworn statement that he did not send the texts?
          Why not turn over his phone?

          • A Consumer of News Reply

            February 5, 2014 at 7:09 pm

            Then publish their allegations. Why didn’t they go to law enforcement? Why go to a small, insignificant paper such as yours? Which brd member? They are elected public officials. If they are coming forward as part of their role as a trustee, then they have a responsibility to be transparent. Report the WHOLE story. Again, responsible reporting USED to mean something.

    • OMG Reply

      February 5, 2014 at 9:50 pm

      Hey idiot boy, is that you Bob Chester? These guys have earned their cred bro! Won the LA Press Club Award for putting Noguez in jail bra! Took out Wendy Greuel, and now they just took down Roybal and soon Vasquez. I think if they put a story up their cred should be accounted for Chester!

      An insignificant paper? What a crock of shit bro! Look at what I wrote above. No one is doing what these two are doing, the fricken LA Times is afraid of them, the Whittier Daily News copies them and the LA Weekly rips them off! So go back to your hole Chester the molester and resign.

  3. Pingback: Chester resigns as Faculty Senate President and Coordinator | Talon Marks

  4. Guest Reply

    January 30, 2014 at 10:45 pm

    Mr. Economy and Mr. Hews,
    Have you thought about proofreading your articles before printing them? Perhaps you should consider enrolling in one of Mr. Chester’s English classes.

    • Editor Reply

      January 31, 2014 at 11:09 am

      Absolutli not, we nver prof reed, ads moore spiece to teh newzpaper.

  5. Ted Stoltze for College President? Reply

    January 29, 2014 at 8:41 pm

    Cerritos Community College is sadly far from being liberal and even further from God. Under President Lacy’s reign of terror, a gestapo style administration along with her Riverside pals have maintained absolute power while raiding the College’s coffers in lucrative nepotism hiring and multi-million dollar contracts awarded with unquestioned extensions. Thank you Ted Stoltze for standing up to Lacy’s Henchman, Goliath, Duck Dynasty’s Phil Robertson, King of the College or J. Edgar Hoover, all fitting aliases for Bob Chester. You remind us that just like in the City of Bell, absolute power does in fact corrupt absolutely. Furthermore,it seems to many of us proud old God fearing gadflys, that our community College has a plaguing problem with too many bobblehead Bobs in power, well ladies one down and two more to go. With grace we should probably also thank Professor Sally Havice who helped uncover the case of Daniel Beckham, a young man who seems pure and simply wronged by the powers that be at Cerritos College and their rogue campus police. Daniel’s case smells as bad as Watergate or better yet, so much more foul that Hews Media should refer to this case as “DanielGate”. Lacey’s cronies ( Fabish, Juntilla, Soto, Lewellen, Chomiak, et. al. )we are watching you and you shall be exposed in time as Pandora’s box has been opened once and for all. In the end, it is ironic how a middle aged female College President can unleash or endorse such wrath of hate, homophobia and misogynist practices on a college campus. Even a card carrying ACLU member would agree that Academic Freedom does not equivocate to hate speech or even worse Anti-American rhetoric. Chester and Lacy must go quietly into the sunset in riverside or leisure world with their hate for diversity and ill gotten gains. We shall remember them in the past of the College with the same sentiments we might feel when we are reminded of fallen tyrants such as Hitler, Rizo, Castro, Hoover or Nixon.

  6. Ted Stolze Reply

    January 29, 2014 at 5:59 pm

    Dear Mr. Economy and Mr. Hews,

    I am surprised that you have quoted from my recent open letter to Professor Chester. I do not know who forwarded a copy to you, and I do not approve of your publication of any portions of it. My letter was intended only for Cerritos College faculty and not for wider distribution.

    Sincerely,

    Ted Stolze
    Philosophy Department
    Cerritos College

    • One of Ted's Colleagues Reply

      January 30, 2014 at 8:28 pm

      Maybe you should have thought of the potential consequences of your actions, Dr. Stolze.

  7. FLFF Reply

    January 29, 2014 at 2:32 pm

    Wow all the college liberal academics seem to have panties in a bunch.. Yawn what else is new?

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