Dianna Gonzales Named Interim Chancellor

By Tyler Breisacher

Staff Writer

Dianna Gonzales will serve as City College’s interim chancellor until the end of June, taking over for former chancellor Mark Rocha, who resigned on March 26.

Gonzales has worked as an administrator at City College since December 2016, first as Vice Chancellor of Human Resources, then as Senior Vice Chancellor of Administrative and Student Affairs.

“This is an important first step in moving the college forward,” Board of Trustees President Shanell Williams said in an April 2 press release. “The Board will work closely with Interim Chancellor Gonzales during these next few months to develop our budget, and improve college operations to ensure all our students needs are being met.”

After Gonzales’ term, another interim chancellor will be selected to serve for one year, and then a permanent chancellor will take office in July of 2021, according to the press release.

The selection was made in closed session at a special meeting of the Board of Trustees on April 1.  Williams said Gonzales’ contract and compensation would be approved at the next regular meeting of the board on April 23.

All trustees except Trustee John Rizzo voted for the selection. Rizzo did not respond to a request for comment.

Before going into closed session, the board heard several comments from members of the public, emphasizing the need for a chancellor who the entire City College community can trust, and who will work to raise funds for the college. Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the meeting was held on Zoom, and comments were submitted in writing, and read by board liaison Linda Shaw.

Faculty union AFT 2121 President Jennifer Worley said the union has a good relationship with Dianna Gonzales and is hopeful that her selection as interim chancellor “will be a good turn of events after some difficult times.”

“The Academic Senate looks forward to hearing Interim Chancellor Gonzales’ vision for CCSF at this difficult time,” Academic Senate President Alexis Litzky said. “The global pandemic and ensuing budget and pedagogical implications are incredibly difficult constraints for any leader, and we really need someone that can speak pragmatically and empathetically through what will continue to be a tumultuous period at CCSF.”

Department Chairperson Council President Darlene Alioto said the council was “willing to support her and work with her (and want her to work with us) — but she must move away from the divisive nature of the Rocha administration and be a uniter rather than a divider in moving the College forward.  Her decision making must be sound and transparent with collegial consultation and input.”

Student organizer Vick Chung was disappointed in the decision. “I wish the trustees reached out to groups that have been vocal and active against Rocha’s administration,” she said. “This was an opportunity to rebuild trust, and they didn’t seize the opportunity.”

The college’s press release included a statement from Gonzales as well.

“I am honored to take on the role of Interim Chancellor at City College during this time of transition. We have been working diligently to maintain the best possible continuity of instruction and supportive services for our students, and I look forward to continuing this work for the next several months,” she said. “In partnership with the Board of Trustees, I am committed to serving as a strong advocate on behalf of the College with local and state leaders.”

Gonzales will hold a virtual town hall on Tuesday, April 7, so the community can hear from her directly. More information about the town hall will be available soon at:

The Guardsman