They tried to keep their choice a secret until the name was announced publicly at the Weill Institute in downtown Bakersfield on Monday.
But, in horse racing parlance, one of three finalists for chancellorship of the sprawling Kern Community College District seemed to be a sure thing, a cinch, a lock, a shoo-in.
“I can tell you about this individual’s educational experience, their resume, and you’d know exactly who it is I am talking about,” Romeo Agbalog, president of the KCCD Board of Trustees, told the modest crowd of faculty, administrators and local dignitaries.
Agbalog soon cut to the chase, however.
“Certainly as I describe this district, we know we need talented people with the brains to keep this operation going. This time the district chose somebody with heart,” he said.
“I’d like to introduce to you the next chancellor of the Kern Community College District, our sixth chancellor, Dr. Sonya Christian.”
Christian, who has served as Bakersfield College president since January 2013, joined the district 30 years ago as a mathematics faculty member. She also served as department chair and dean until December 2002, when she moved to Oregon.