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Palomar officials said they will discuss the Area 2 vacancy at their Feb. 14 meeting. Courtesy photo/Palomar College
Palomar officials said they will discuss the Area 2 vacancy at their Feb. 14 meeting. Courtesy photo/Palomar College
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Palomar College board seeks new trustee after Garcia departure

SAN MARCOS — The Palomar College Governing Board has been left without an Area 2 representative after a trustee resigned in order to serve on the Escondido City Council.

Former trustee Christian Garcia was one of several individuals who applied to take over the Escondido City Council’s District 3 seat, left vacant in November by Deputy Mayor Joel Garcia, who now represents District 2. The council officially appointed Garcia to the position on Jan. 30 in a 3-1 vote.

Garcia was elected to the board of trustees in 2020 and was partway through his four year-term when he resigned on Feb. 1. At the time of his resignation, Garcia was serving as board president. During his interview with the city, Garcia said the decision to step away from the college was difficult.

“On behalf of the College, I want to thank Trustee Garcia for his steadfast leadership on the Governing Board, where he championed student success, provided great strategy and demonstrated a commitment to responsible fiscal stewardship,” said Palomar Superintendent/President Dr. Star Rivera-Lacey. “His departure is a tremendous loss, and we wish him all of the best in his new role as a City Councilmember.”

Garcia’s departure marks the latest change to the makeup of the five-person board, which also saw the election of three new trustees in November.

Palomar officials said they will discuss the Area 2 vacancy at their Feb. 14 meeting, and will likely adopt a resolution either to appoint someone or to hold a special election to fill the vacancy through 2024.

Information about the process timeline and application materials will be released following the board’s determination.

The individual who fills the vacancy must live within the boundaries of Area 2, which covers Escondido and the eastern third of the state Route 78 corridor.

The Feb. 14 meeting will take place at 4 p.m., and community members can attend over Zoom or in person at 1140 W. Mission Rd. in San Marcos.