With Dr. Rhodes leaving EPCC, a replacement will be hard to find
By Joe Olvera ©, 2011
Trustee Grace Quintanilla has the perfect candidate to replace Dr. Richard Rhodes – another Dr. Rhodes. “The students, the staff, everyone liked Dr. Rhodes because of what he’s done for the El Paso Community College,” Quintanilla said. “He’s helped us grow, created new programs, and always had a ready ear to anyone who wanted to speak to him. I know it’s impossible, but, he’s got to move on. He’s been here ten years, that’s a long time to keep a president of a college.”
Rhodes, who agreed to take the reins of the Austin Community College in Austin, Texas, is set to make the trek, but, he hasn’t yet decided when he would leave. “He hasn’t told us anything yet, so we’re all in limbo. We really haven’t met as a board to discuss a replacement for him, but, we’ll probably discuss the issue at our next meeting on June 21, 2011,” Quintanilla said.
Rhodes who became President of the El Paso Community College on Dec. 1, 2001, has been at the helm through the college’s growing pains. A native of Alamogordo, NM, Dr. Rhodes received his Bachelor of Business Administration in Accounting and a Master of Arts in Educational Management Development from New Mexico State University. Practically a home grown product, Rhodes earned his PhD. in the Community College Leadership Program at the University of Texas at Austin. He also is a CPA, certified in both Texas and New Mexico.
“We’re all very sorry to see him go, especially that he was so involved in the community of El Paso, he served on many boards and organizations,” Quintanilla said. “At this point, there’s no real effort being made to replace him. We’re lucky to have Dr. Ernie Roberts staying behind to help us through the transition.” Roberts was Rhodes’ Executive Assistant during this tenure. “Dr. Roberts knows the ropes, he knows the ins and outs of running a college such as ours,’ Quintanilla said. “He would be a very good candidate to replace Dr. Rhodes, or we might do a national search. Nothing has been decided. We’ll just have to wait and see. Dr. Rhodes still hasn’t said when he would leave for Austin. Once he leaves, however, we’ll just have to keep looking for another Dr. Rhodes and hope that we find him.”