District Chancellor Bryan Reece Put on Paid Administrative Leave

Dr. Bryan Reece, 4CD Chancellor. Photo courtesy of Contra Costa Community College District.

Dr. Bryan Reece, 4CD Chancellor. Photo courtesy of Contra Costa Community College District.

Andrea Madison, Editor-in-Chief

The Contra Costa Community College District Governing Board has placed Chancellor Bryan Reece on paid administrative leave, according to a Sept. 15 email sent out by the 4CD communications department. The district’s Executive Vice Chancellor of Education and Technology, Mojdeh Mehdizadeh, will be stepping into the role of acting chancellor.

The decision, reached during a Governing Board meeting held on the evening of Sept. 14, comes as the college district is still reeling from last year’s series of policy violations, contract non-renewals for two associate vice chancellors and the interim chancellor, and the threat of sanction against the 4CD by the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges.

Reece’s leave was described as a “personnel matter” that is “under investigation,” Tim Leong, the district’s Director of Communications and Community Relations, told The Inquirer in a Sept. 15 phone interview.

“We are following our processes that we established so that the investigation is thorough and fair.”

Leong said the board is trying to maintain “some sense of decorum” regarding Reece’s departure, and because the chancellor holds such a visible role, the district would “let the process play out.”

Reece, as reported last fall by the DVC Inquirer, served as the president of Southern California’s Norco College from 2016 to 2019, when his contract was terminated by the Riverside Community College District for unconfirmed reasons.

He was hired as the new 4CD chancellor in October 2020 – one month after DVC’s Academic and Classified Senates issued no-confidence votes against the Governing Board, two of whose members at the time, Greg Enholm and Vicki Gordon, were subjects of misconduct investigations.

In a Sept. 15 email to The Inquirer, Leong wrote: “While this decision requires adjustments, particularly for those of us at the District Office, we are confident the dedicated faculty, classified professionals and managers at DVC can remain focused on serving our students and our communities until this matter is resolved.”

“Sometimes when we have these [sorts] of matters, we hope people don’t have preconceived notions of guilt,” he added in reference to the chancellor’s sudden leave.

“We try to alert folks in [the] media that it’s a personal matter.”

**Correction Notice: The article mistakenly referred to contract renewals for two board members; it has since been corrected to contract renewals for two associate vice chancellors.