FRC appoints new superintendent/president
Kevin Trutna has accepted the position of superintendent/president at Feather River College. Trutna had been the interim superintendent/president since Aug. 6, 2012. Photo by Laura Beaton
The Feather River College board of trustees announced the appointment of Dr. Kevin Trutna as superintendent/president of the college, pending final contract negotiations.
The decision was announced Feb. 11. Trutna, acting and interim president at FRC and Yuba Community College District, has 23 years’ experience in higher education. He has served as a part-time and full-time faculty member; a program director; a grant writer; the dean of mathematics, engineering, science and health occupations at Arizona Western College; and the vice president for academic and student services.
He assumed the interim helm at FRC from outgoing president Ron Taylor on Aug. 6, 2012.
Trutna ranks his involvement in the college’s follow-up report to the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges as a top accomplishment. He said the staff did a great job of involving the whole college community in the self-study process.
He said he is also proud of the college’s solid position after the economic meltdown of the past several years. “We are starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel,” he said.
“FRC has positioned itself to jump off from here without having lots of ground to make up,” he said, in large part due to his predecessor’s planning.
Trutna, a member of the Plumas County Economic Recovery Committee, is working with other organizations toward keeping the county’s fiscal health strong.
He said he hadn’t thought about lobbying for the hospitals in our area, but realizes that the college and hospitals are intricately intertwined with vested interests in each other.
The college provides training for hospital employees and the need for the training is vital to the college. When either entity is jeopardized, both are endangered.
Cycle of success
Trutna said he sees the importance of countywide involvement as a big cycle. The residents elect the board members, who guide and oversee the college, which in turn serves the residents.
He said that for small rural communities to survive and thrive, it takes innovative partnerships to succeed.
A couple of the new president’s goals are to stabilize the student population and create long-term fiscal stability, without being reliant on Sacramento laws for funding.
“Instead of living month to month, we need to set up a multi-year plan,” Trutna said, and find other funding sources.
He also plans to focus on student housing issues. He said FRC needs more and updated student housing.
He added the college also needs to invest in new infrastructure, technology and energy savings by incorporating alternative systems such as solar or biomass.
Trutna said his long-term goal is to provide a solid educational facility that Plumas County can rely on.