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Robert Garber interim Cuyamaca College president

Posted on: Sep 7, 2010 1:00:00 AM

Contact: Della Elliott

EL CAJON – Robert Garber, a 33-year veteran of California community colleges, has accepted a one-year appointment as interim president of Cuyamaca College. Garber, who retired in 2009 as president of Los Angeles Pierce College, returned to work in August, first as interim vice president of student services for Cuyamaca College and now as Cuyamaca College interim president. 

He had previously worked at Pierce College from 1977 to 1996 as an instructor, counselor, department chair, director, and dean followed by 10 years as vice president for student services at San Diego Miramar College before returning to Pierce College as its chief executive officer in 2006, a post he held for 3 ½ years.

“I am delighted that after experiencing Cuyamaca for a short time, Bob Garber is willing to forego his retirement to lead the college for a year,” said Chancellor Cindy L. Miles. “Because he comes from experience in two multi-college districts, Bob knows the importance of both college and districtwide teamwork. He has a commitment to the community college mission and our focus on student success, a track record of moving programs and colleges forward, and a history of building leadership teams and working with faculty, staff, and community partnerships.”

Impressed by the collegial spirit at Cuyamaca College and its dedication to students – what the college community calls “The Cuyamaca Way“ -- Garber said he sees the presidency as an opportunity to lead Cuyamaca as an advocate and partner. “It is my intent to be meaningfully involved with campus colleagues and the collective work that helps the college prosper,” he said.

            Garber holds master’s and bachelor’s degrees from the University of California, Berkeley, and is a community college graduate from West Los Angeles College. Statewide, he has been involved in community college committees, including the Community College League of California, and the State Chancellor’s Office Telecommunications Technology Advisory Committee, where he helped develop and promote a comprehensive technology plan for California community colleges. He has also served on a number of accrediting teams through the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges.

Garber also has a history of community involvement, having been a board member of the Los Angeles Economic Development Corp., the Economic Alliance of the San Fernando Valley and the Valley Industry and Commerce Assoc. He has also been a member of the San Diego’s Citizens Review Board on Police Practices. 

            Born and raised in Seattle, Wash., Garber moved to California as a teen.  He served in the U.S. Air Force from 1966 to 1970.  He and his wife of 33 years, Rebecca, have two sons, one in medical school and the other pursuing a master’s in sociology.  

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