Official gets big payout

The Los Angeles Community College District will pay outgoing Chancellor Marshall E. Drummond $428,750 in the wake of his unexpected departure, officials said Friday.

Drummond, 67, was placed on a leave of absence in June, and, weeks later, the district announced that he would be leaving with 23 months remaining on his $354,408-a-year contract. The separation pact contains a confidentiality clause stating that neither Drummond nor district officials, including the Board of Trustees, can disclose the reason for the payment agreement.

"The parties recognize and agree that they each have significant accomplishments, that they have a mutual interest in respecting each other's professional reputations and that they will not engage in disparaging comments to others," the agreement states.

Drummond also will keep lifetime health insurance and retirement benefits. His severance will be paid out over 19 months, the agreement states.

The district's chancellor from 1999 to 2004, Drummond left to become the statewide chancellor of the California community college system, but returned to Los Angeles in 2007.

He was credited with spearheading passage of a series of construction bond measures totaling $5.7 billion that are financing a major "green" building program at the district's nine campuses.

His departure comes at a time of deep funding cuts and explosive enrollment growth for community colleges as the recession drives laid-off workers and students priced out of universities back to school.

Two of the district's nine campuses, Los Angeles City and Los Angeles Trade-Technical, were placed on probation last month by an accreditation commission. The district educates 135,000 students.


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