Campus Path

Selmer O. Wake's History of the SB Community College District

A History of the Santa Barbara Community College District
Personal Experiences and Observations

by Selmer O. Wake

Selmer O. Wake
Selmer O. Wake

Director-Administrative Dean Emeritus, Continuing Education Division
Former Executive Director, The Foundation for Santa Barbara City College

    Dedicated to Robert J. Profant.  July 30, 1924 – June 29, 1991

He exemplified the pioneer educators who made the major contributions in creating the City College what it is today.

Robert Profant
Dr. Robert J. Profant, summer 1965

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 As Historian and Archivist for the College in my retirement, I thought it would be a good idea to have the history of the College reported by someone who was part of the Junior College organization when it was first reorganized in 1946. Selmer O. Wake, retired Director-Administrative Dean of the Continuing Education Division of the College, was the first person employed. He is also the only surviving Administrator who was employed as Assistant Director of the Community Institute of which the new College was a part during its first years.

He has spent considerable time going over huge numbers of old Board minutes to confirm much of what he experienced and observed while the College was part of the High School District and, of course, later when having its own Community College District.

Those interested in the early history and highlights of the College as it has developed and grown over the years will be interested in reading this history. I worked at the same original location of the College on Santa Barbara Street where Mr. Wake had his office.

Robert J. Profant    April, 1991


Writing this history after nearly 20 years in retirement brought back many memories of attending High School Board of Education meetings for 12 years (1946 – 1958) and College Board of Trustee meetings for 13 years (1959 – 1972).

To verify and refresh my memory and check facts on early developments, visits were made to the City Schools’ administrative offices to examine Board minutes dating back to 1908, the University of California, Santa Barbara Library, the Public Library, the City College Library where Board minutes are on microfilm, the County Schools Office, and the Santa Barbara Historical Museum.

This narrative started out to be objective, but it soon became apparent that it was not possible because of my personal involvement in so many early decisions. This has to be a recollection of personal experiences and an observation report over 45 years, backed by as many historical facts as could be found. It was inevitable that my twenty-five year involvement with the development and growth of the college was focused a good deal on the adult education program.

Appreciation is expressed to Marian Rapp, now retired, who started with the college as a secretary when the college briefly occupied the Riviera campus in 1958. She is a member of the College Historical and Archives Committee and typed the original draft of the manuscript. And a big thanks and appreciation to Evalyn Stafford, retired, for editing the manuscript. She was my secretary for 17 years and was accustomed to editing much of what I wrote.

Four charter members of the Board of Trustees, Kathryn Alexander, Sidney R. Frank, and Benjamin P.J. Wells, read the first draft pertaining to the historical aspects, and offered suggestions which, upon further research, added a good deal of detail about the formation of a separate community college district. W.L. (Bill) Fillippini was vacationing in Santa Barbara from his Virginia residence, and he also read a draft copy, as did Dr. Martin Bobgan, Vice President, Continuing Education Division.

If the original High School Board of Education which re-organized the College in the Fall of 1946, were present today, they would be astounded by its phenomenal growth and popularity. It would be virtually impossible to document the numerous individual programs which have contributed to this dramatic growth. The College is now serving more than 12,000 credit students and more than 36,000 non-credit students (1991).

This remarkable success is attributed to good administrative leadership, an excellent teaching staff, many of whose members come from a remarkably talented community for the adult education program; an unusually supportive Board of Trustees; a valued Citizens’ Continuing Education Advisory Council; and an extraordinary curriculum offering credit and non-credit classes to serve the educational interests of students and adults living in the south coast area.

Dr. Robert Profant, college historian and archivist in his retirement, had an opportunity to read the first draft of this history before he passed away on June 29, 1991. He appreciated and valued this personal report which will be added to other historical items for the archives in the new Luria Library. He also requested that the history of the Adult Education Program be written and added to the archives.

He was the second science instructor employed by the College (Maxine Waughtell was the first), and he developed the first biology laboratory in an army barracks building moved to 814 Santa Barbara Street. He was a dedicated teacher, a community volunteer, a good family man, and a good friend.

Selmer O. Wake, January 1992

A History of the S.B. Community College District

The history of Santa Barbara City College began in 1908 when Junior College classes were added to the Santa Barbara High School program. The 13th and 14th grades continued as a part of the High School with a somewhat expanded program made in 1914. Shortly after World War I, a legislative act was signed by the Governor on May 27, 1921, permitting junior college classes to be conducted by State Teachers’ Colleges. The extended High School program was transferred to the Santa Barbara State Teachers’ College that year.

The Junior College classes were largely academic. The following statement on the “Work of the Junior College” was found at the University of California, Santa Barbara library, in an anecdotal record written by Dr. William Ellison, a long-time professor at the College:

“When the junior college moved to the State Teachers’ College campus from the high school, J. William MacLennan, who served as its Dean for the year 1920-21, was added to the college faculty where he continued as head of the junior college for two years. Dean MacLennan was highly trained in history and related fields at the University of Chicago and he stimulated academic interest in the college. Following his resignation in 1923, he continued to participate in many cultural activities in the community at large.

“Succeeding Dean MacLennan, William Ashworth became head of the Junior College, holding that position until the ending of the junior college as an entity by the development of the college organization into upper and lower divisions in 1926-27.”

Dr. Ellison’s article went on to record that in its first year on the College campus, the enrollment was just under 100 students; the enrollment increased to approximately 150 students by the time of its absorption in 1926-27 into the upper and lower division organization of the College. While researching, I discovered that Marian Anderson, a former University of California, Santa Barbara, instructor, and wife of a long-time City Schools teacher-administrator and colleague, James C. Anderson, had received her Associate in Arts degree while attending Santa Barbara State Teachers’ College at the last Junior College graduation in 1927. Both are now (1991) retired here in Santa Barbara.

The first Junior College classes offered in the community lasted for about 18 years. From 1926-27, when the program ended, twenty years elapsed until a new beginning was made in 1946-47. The early beginning of the Junior College (1909) makes it the second oldest in the state. Fresno Junior College was the first. The story about how the Junior College classes were re-established in the Fall of 1946 is perhaps not what one would expect.

Early in the mid-1940’s, the Santa Barbara secondary district was experience severe financial restraints and had reached the limit of its taxing authority. Eldon Ford, Business Manager and Assistant Superintendent and a long-time administrator, proposed re-establishing the 13th and 14th grades in the secondary district. This permitted the assessment of up to thirty-five cents ($.35) per hundred dollars of assessed valuation for use by the secondary district for the Junior College classes. This would provide financial relief since the Junior College classes would be very small, and there were no legal restrictions on how the tax monies could be used.

In subsequent years, administrators always questioned whether they were getting all the money assessed for Junior College use. It was known, for example, that the high school gymnasium was largely constructed with Junior College tax money. This situation is explained later in the text. At the June 4, 1946, board meeting, the lawyer member of the board, Yale Griffith (he is still living in 1992 and remembers the occasion well) made the motion, with a second by Katherine McCloskey, for a unanimous decision to establish a new Junior College for the 1946-47 school year. Later it was Katherine McCloskey who often asked for reports on the junior college programs and its objectives. Years later she left the Board to become education reporter for the Santa Barbara News-Press.

Mr. Griffith was the attorney for Mr. and Mrs. Max Schott, and worked on the details of executing their wishes to donate the Alhecama Center property at 914 Santa Barbara Street to the secondary school district. The title of the property was conveyed to the school district on November 2, 1945. The Alhecama Center property was purchased by the Schotts in 1939 when the Community Arts Association, which occupied the property, went into bankruptcy. Mrs. Schott continued many of the community arts type of activities in the city for some years, for she loved the theatre and the arts. She was an artist of some accomplishment herself. A lovely painting by her was presented to me at a commemoration ceremony in the Alhecama Theatre held in her honor on June 16, 1972, some months after she had passed away. A bronze plaque imbedded in a large rock in front of the Theatre is displayed in recognition of her and of the gift of property which served as the Adult Education Center for nearly 30 years. Mrs. Schott had remodeled the Theatre and improved all facilities. The theatre was named after her four daughters by taking the first two letters of each name:   Alice,  Helen,  Catherine and  Mary Lou  –       AL-HE-CA-MA.

Now that the Board of Education had voted to re-establish the Junior College classes, Dr. Rudolph D. Lindquist, Superintendent at the time, proceeded to find more ways to justify the tax assessment for serving educational needs at the 13th and 14th grade levels. Concurrent with this board action, he had Roy L. Soules, Director of Vocational Education, make a study of the community to see how this new educational program would serve community needs. Upon completion of the study in the Spring of 1946, the Board of Education followed through to establish the program beginning in the Fall of 1946. With this new junior college program, Dr. Lindquist saw that there were now three organized educational programs in the community serving young and older adults: the well-established and growing Adult Education program, the University Extension classes, and now the Junior College. He then created a new organization, approved in April 1946, which was called “The Community Institute” under the direction of Mr. Soules. It would unify and coordinate the services of all three organizations at one location. The establishment of this new institution was influenced by the gift of the Alhecama Center to the City Schools. The Center provided a logical location for the new Junior College. Its classes would be small and the Center facilities could be used by the Adult Education program and by University Extension. Dr. Lindquist was particularly interested in continuing education, and he was proud of this new organization which unified all educational services for adults in the community.

Dr. Rudolph D. Lindquist
Dr. Rudolph D. Lindquist

At the Board meeting following the unanimous decision to establish the Junior Colleges, I was the first to be employed as Assistant Director of the Community Institute, on June 20, 1946, leaving Santa Barbara Junior High School where I had been a counselor and teacher for seven years. I was also to be a counselor and the Coordinator of the apprenticeship program in Adult Education. As Assistant Director, I participated in a small council administering and planning all three programs.

Grace Ruth Southwick, long time Principal of the Evening High School and the Adult Education program, had her office at the Community Institute, and the Adult Education program used almost all of the excellent facilities provided by the Alhecama Center. Mr. Soules served as the first Principal of the Junior College and as Director of the Institute. Since Mr. Soules also worked part-time for the Industrial Arts Department of the University of California at Santa Barbara, he coordinated the University Extension program. Several war surplus buildings from the former Hoff Heights military installation, left over from World War II, were added to the property, and one of the buildings became the office for the University Extension program.

In 1947 Grace Ruth Southwick retired, and on July 1, 1947, I was appointed Director of Adult Education and Principal of the Evening High School program while continuing as Assistant Director of the Community Institute. William C. Kirchner, Principal of La Cumbre Junior High School, was named the new Principal of the Junior College. At the same time, he was also appointed Assistant Director of the Community Institute. Mr. Soules continued to serve as Director as well as Director of Vocational Education for the City Schools. Robert C. McNeill, a local high school teacher, was employed to replace as Coordinator of the Apprenticeship program on October 7, 1947.

All of this took place shortly after the end of World War II. There was a large influx of war veterans exercising the educational G.I. Bill of Rights to continue their education. At that same time, the civilian population, which had been so engaged in war-time activities, was now free to catch up on their education and pursue leisure time activities. The Adult Education classes and the University Extension classes were expanding rapidly. It was the new Junior College program which had the smallest enrollment.

Attendance in the Adult Education Apprenticeship program had increased greatly because of all the veterans returning to enter many of the trades, so this program earned increased amounts of state funding. This extra income permitted the Adult Education program to further expand its offerings to meet community interests and needs.

Since the Junior College enrollment was so small and the need to further justify the tax expenditure and to meet some of the College vocational objectives and increase its enrollments, the entire Apprenticeship program was transferred to the Junior College. Miss Southwick protested this move of losing a traditional program which was earning substantial state funding for the first time to promote more programs. The move increased the junior college enrollments dramatically during its early years and at the time made up the largest number in the college. The ironic part of this transfer was that years later, when the apprenticeship enrollments dropped significantly and the classes were expensive to maintain, and no longer necessary for their vocational program, the entire program was transferred back to the Adult education Division of the College.

Junior College faculty members were added, and graduates from Santa Barbara High School, Catholic and Carpinteria High Schools began to increase attendance as did a few enrollments from the community at large. Henry Bagish was one faculty member who started his local career under the auspices of the Community Institute and is still teaching (as of 1991) at Santa Barbara City College. Robert Profant, who recently retired and now deceased, also began under the Community Institute and organized the first laboratory for biology instruction.

The post-war boom in enrollments in all three divisions of the Community Institute placed an increasing burden on the limited facilities. To further accommodate increasing enrollments, three more large army surplus buildings were moved in February of 1947 to a vacant lot owned by the City Schools at 814 Santa Barbara Street, just a block east of the Community Institute. These three classrooms were largely used for day-time junior college classes and in the evening by adult education classes.

When the Junior College vacated these buildings later, the high school district planned to sell this property. The District still needed money. Miss Pearl Chase, who had offices at the Community Institute and was fondly known as “Santa Barbara’s Pearl” because of her extensive conservation work and her “political” influence, heard about this possible sale from me, and said, “they cannot legally sell it, we need that facility for the growing Adult Education program.” Miss Chase was urged to attend a Board of Education meeting where she informed them that deed restrictions prevented the sale, and said the facilities were for Adult Education. The Board acquiesced and the proposed sale was cancelled.

Miss Chase was aware of these restrictions in the deed because she taught in the program which had been developed at this location by Anna S. Blake under the old Sloyd School. This private school which served students enrolled in the elementary schools was, surprisingly, the seed or the eventual beginning and development of a series of institutions leading to the establishment of the University of California at Santa Barbara.

THE SLOYD SCHOOL, 1891 – 1921
Here is a sketch of the woman and her work composed from the files at the Santa Barbara Historical Museum. It deserves prominence in this history of the college.

Born in Boston in 1844, Anna Sophia Blake, affectionately known as just Miss Blake, taught domestic science classes in Massachusetts. At age 46, deteriorating health forced this Boston philanthropist to move to a place with a more temperate climate, and she became the adopted citizen of Santa Barbara, arriving to register in the famous and luxurious Arlington Hotel on June 3, 1890.

She recognized the need for manual training and household arts classes, and in 1891 set up free classes in the old Congregational Church on Ortega Street. This temporary location would serve until her own privately financed and modern edifice was constructed. Its location would be at the corner of Santa Barbara and de la Guerra streets (now the 814 Santa Barbara Street address).  The large two-story building had a prominent dome on top and had all the latest conveniences available at that time. Here she developed what was known as the Sloyd School. It derived its name from the Swedish “slojd”, meaning manual training. Free classes were offered to elementary school students in cooking and woodworking. Later, art and gymnasium were added. In 1895, the Sloyd subjects were made an official part of the public school curriculum, and by 1900 more than 380 children attended classes. Many prominent families in Santa Barbara had their children enrolled there, and the name “Sloyd” was well known in the community. This philanthropist paid all the teachers’ salaries, but later entered into an agreement in 1895 to have the public schools pay for heating, lighting, and janitorial services.

Anna Blake Plaque
Anna Blake plaque
814 Santa Barbara Street

Miss Blake financed the cost of the education in Boston and Europe of Miss Ednah Rich who joined Miss Blake as her chief assistant later became the principal. When Miss Blake suffered health problems, she deeded the property to the schools in 1899, but passed away before the deed was recorded. Miss Rich carried on her work until 1909 when the program had out-grown its facilities. She moved the school to the huge Victorian building at Victoria and Chapala streets, later known to all of us as the Administration Annex building (torn down when the schools obtained its new administration center). Here the Sloyd School received State Normal School status. Its curriculum was absorbed by the high school district when its new high school was constructed. With a new curriculum and new status it became known as the Santa Barbara State Normal School of the Manual Arts and Home Economics.

Edna Rich Morse
Edna Rich Morse
Santa Barbara
1871 – 1945

In 1914, the school moved to a new campus on the Riviera. Later, in 1921, it changed again and became known as the Santa Barbara Teachers’ College. Miss Ednah Rich Morse had married and was part of all these changes and a year before her death in 1945, saw her beloved Sloyd School eventually integrated into the University of California system here in Santa Barbara.

The name Anna S. Blake is all but forgotten, but her former students put up a large memorial plaque in 1933 recognizing the phenomenal work of this woman. Her large building was destroyed in the 1925 earthquake, and the lot remained vacant until the war surplus buildings from World War II were moved in and became part of the Community Institute facilities used jointly by the Junior College and the Adult Education programs.

A few years later the Community Institute complex of buildings was further enlarged by the purchase of the old Lincoln School kindergarten building at the corner of de la Guerra and Santa Barbara streets. The kindergarten program had been moved back to the main Lincoln Elementary School, so Eldon Ford, Business Manager, had the secondary district purchase the buildings from the elementary district for $21,000 in 1950 for use by the expanding Adult Education program. It was named the Adult Education Building. Years later, when the secondary district constructed a new Administrative Center complex at 202 East de la Guerra Street, they needed the land where that kindergarten building stood, so it was traded for a vacant lot near Santa Barbara High School (corner of Olive and Canon Perdido Streets). The Adult Education Building was later demolished to make way for a parking lot for the new Administration Center. That lot near the high school was later sold by the City College to the City Housing Authority for low-income housing.

In the late 1980s the buildings and lot at 814 Santa Barbara Street, through proper legal procedures, were sold by the College to the State Parks Department for the eventual restoration of the Royal Presidio by the Santa Barbara Trust for Historic Preservation. The old El Presidio covered part of this lot.

To resume the early history, Dr. Lindquist was killed instantly on March 30, 1948, in a head-on automobile accident on his way home from an educational meeting in Los Angeles. Dr. Einar W. Jacobsen, President of Los Angeles City College, was hired as the new school Superintendent on December 15, 1948. Dr. Jacobsen brought his experience as a junior college president to the further development of the college. He employed several consultants from the University of Southern California to evaluate the Junior College and make recommendations for future development.

Adequate space for the growing enrollments in the college was one of the main problems facing the school administration. In October of 1952, Mrs. Max Schott added more gifts to the schools by donating a small lot and building at 209 East Canon Perdido and her home at 219 East Canon Perdido. She retained the living rights to her home but when she passed away it could be used as a classroom. It did not add much more space to the Community Institute facilities. Also added to the Community Institute complex at that time (October, 1952) was the two-story arts building known as the Hale building, 202 E. Canon Perdido Street (Fred Hale, the owner). This arts building had been built especially for the distinguished muralist Albert Herter who had painted the large murals that hung in the former El Mirasol Hotel, occupying the block now known as the Keck Memorial Park. The main studio of this building featured special built-in facilities for painting large murals and is still recognized as one of the finest studios in Santa Barbara. It was purchased by the Secondary District for $24,000, and it was entered in the Board minutes as needed for the large ceramics and upholstery enrollments in Adult Education.

Mr. William Kircher, who had served as Principal of the Junior College since July 1, 1947, was transferred to an administrative assignment at Santa Barbara High School in 1952, and Dr. Leonard Bowman, Vice President of Santa Barbara High School, was appointed Director (a new title was given to him). In 1953, with enrollments growing, Winifred Lancaster was employed as the first Dean of Students and Counselor for the College. Later, she became the first Dean of Instruction. Dr. Bowman aggressively promoted the program, added faculty and worked hard for more adequate facilities for the College.

Community Institute 1952
Community Institute 1952
Front Row L – R: Frank Fowler, Henry Bagish, John Miles Flynn, Sam Wake, Philip Chauvin
Rear Row L – R Minnie Rasmussen, unknown, Laura Boutilier, Ellen Uphaus, Maxine Waughtell, Winifred Lancaster, Art (custodian), Roy Soules,
William Kircher, unknown (Mr. Kircher’s secretary)

During Dr. Jacobsen’s tenure, all programs continued to grow and the Community Institute facilities were strained to the limit, so University Extension moved its office several blocks away and many of its classes were held on the campus of the University.

Katherine McCloskey, Board member and enthusiastic supporter of the new college, had questioned the role and growth of the College, and whether or not the district was going to have a Junior College to do more than a “token job” as she reported at a Board meeting. She also questioned the use of the tax rate assessed for the Junior College. She quoted from the report made by the consultants that Dr. Jacobsen brought in for assessment of the college, and listed some new directions and program needs. She asked Dr. Jacobsen to make a report on the present status and future development of the college. From the Board of Education minutes of December 15, 1953, the following discussion took place which gives one an understanding of the great difficulty in developing a comprehensive junior college program under the administration of a high school district:

  “The present status of the Junior College and possibilities for its future development were presented for discussion. Several Board members questioned whether the Board should proceed with this matte since Mrs. McCloskey, who specifically asked for a special report from the Superintendent on the Junior College, was not present at the meeting. Dr. Elmott phoned Mrs. McCloskey who requested that the group proceed with consideration of Dr. Jacobsen’s report.

  “With the aid of specially prepared charts, Dr. Jacobsen outlined the place of the Junior College as a part of the secondary school program, its purposes, the students enrolled, and where they came from, requirements for accreditation, the guidance and counseling program, the cost of Junior College attendance (both to the district and to the individual students), the differences among vocational, terminal, and transfer training, the respective responsibilities and the roles of the Evening High School, and the Junior College in offering courses for adults, the possible effects on the Junior College of the transfer of Santa Barbara College to Goleta, physical limitations of the present Junior College plant, and possible future Junior College enrollments.

“Board and staff members discussed the various phases of Dr. Jacobsen’s report, together with details on the Theatre Arts and apprenticeship training programs, minimum requirements for accreditation, the limitless possibilities for a junior college program, and other considerations. After lengthy discussion, Mr. Licker summarized the problem of the Board when he stated that the basic question was one of defining the limitations of the junior college program. He questioned whether it was really the fundamental responsibility of the Board to provide tax-supported educational opportunities for persons of all ages who are interested in getting any type of education. He stated that, even though the junior college is legally a part of the secondary school system, the tax burden might be insufferably heavy if the junior college were to try to meet all of the demands which might be put upon it, and he questioned whether it was really the responsibility of the Board of Education to meet such demands.

“Mr. Licker pointed out that acquisition of one of the present Santa Barbara College campuses could represent a tremendous capital investment, and that the cost of keeping a large plant would be very high. He stated that he believed the Board should make its decision as to the limitations it would place on the Junior College, and that to make this decision, the Board had to face the fundamental question of whether its primary job was to provide education for youngsters, or to meet community demands for education ‘from the cradle to the grave’.

“Dr. Jacobsen stated that he was in favor of a very modest junior college program to serve between 400 and 600 full-time students, and that he believed the Mesa Campus could serve junior college needs for 10 to 20 years. (Author’s note: Ten years later, the actual enrollment was approximately 3,000; 20 years later, well in excess of 6,000).

       “Following further consideration of the matter from various points of view, it was the request of Board members present that Dr. Jacobsen prepare an outline of a recommended junior college program for early presentation to the Board, together with a statement on the physical needs of providing such a program, and cost figures. The Board members requested that Dr. Jacobsen’s report be prepared with the understanding that the program would take care of the needs of young people between the ages of 17 and 20 only.” (author’s underlining).

Dr. Jacobsen tried to downplay the possible emergence of a large college and allay their fears by telling the Board that the Junior College would just “supplement” and not conflict with Santa Barbara College (which became the University of California at Santa Barbara). Aware of the critical need for more space for the Junior College, he had the Board arrange for an appraisal of both the Rivera campus (which the University was leaving) and that part of the University Mesa campus on which the main building was situated. Bruce O’Neal, Board member, objected to obtaining the Riviera campus and questioned why obtain just part of the Mesa campus – why not all of it? The Mesa Improvement Association urged the Board of Education to purchase the Mesa campus in November of 1953. The Chamber of Commerce and the City Council also expressed to the Board their interest in helping the junior college with its campus problem. Dr. Bowman and Dr. Jacobsen were soliciting help.

On July 1, 1955, the Board decided to enter into a lease/purchase plan to acquire the Mesa campus from the University for a $25,000 semi-annual payment. The University wanted to keep one acre of the parcel to insure their mineral rights to the Mesa property. It took some time to resolve this issue, and they finally gave up on their option to retain these rights. During this time the High School District needed to ask the voters to increase the tax rate from $1.10 ($.75 for High School, $.35 for Junior College) to $1.50 per hundred dollars assessed valuation. The limit for junior college tax rates had been assessed and used, but more money was needed for secondary schools. Plans were to ask voters to approve a $9,125,000 bond issue plus the tax rate increase. Part of the bond issue would be for $615,000 to purchase the Mesa campus, $415,000 for the property plus $200,000 for alterations. The remainder of the bond issue was for a new high school (San Marcos) and remodeling and improvements to other secondary schools. It was surprising to see the large plurality of an almost six to one favorable vote. So the Board exercised its option to purchase the Mesa campus for $415,628 on June 27, 1957.

This 43-acre Mesa site had been purchased in 1932 by the State Teachers’ College (later the University of California at Santa Barbara), and the new structure was planned for the Industrial Arts program, and completed in 1941, for $450,000 from funds allocated from the Public Works appropriation of 1939. La Playa Stadium, seating 9,000, was constructed with WPA labor (a federal Works Progress Administration program organized for the jobless during the great depression of the 1930’s) at a cost of $90,000. It was completed in 1938, and served as the Santa Barbara State College and later University stadium for athletic events.

When Mrs. Lancaster left the college to head the Counseling and Guidance division for the City Schools on a temporary basis, Marie Lantagne was employed as half-time Dean of Women and half-time instructor in Physical Education for the 1954-55 school year. At the same time, George Kelley was employed as the first Registrar. Dr. Jacobsen resigned on July 1, 1956, to join the faculty at the University of California at Los Angeles, and Dr. Norman B. Scharer was employed as his replacement.

The University of California at Santa Barbara had moved its campus from the Riviera location in 1954 to its new campus on the former World War II Marine Corps base in Goleta, leaving the Riviera campus unoccupied. The Board of Education negotiated an option to purchase the Riviera campus for temporary use by the College. The college occupied the Riviera campus during the 1958 – 59 school year. The Board had plans to use part of the Riviera campus for an administration center, and exercised their option to purchase the entire campus in 1962 for $119,349. When the City changed the zoning classification for the Riviera area, the Board sold it several years later for $330,500 (an outlandishly low real estate price in this 1991 year). Before selling it, Mr. George Browne, the Business Manager, offered the campus for use by the Adult Education Center, knowing its need for more space and parking. The campus buildings were in terrible condition, and it would have required extensive and costly repairs; also, it was not easily accessible to the public. The offer was quickly declined.

Riviera Campus
Riviera Campus
SBCC Admin and Faculty

The Mesa Campus was still occupied by the Industrial Arts department when the University was in the process of eliminating the program from its curriculum offerings. The Master Plan for Higher Education had assigned all professional programs to the universities and the vocational programs to the State Colleges. This meant the Home Economics and Industrial Arts programs were being removed from the local university. This Master Plan for Higher Education, enacted in 1949, also included the junior college system as part of the plan for higher education in California.

Dr. Joseph P. Cosand
Dr. Joseph P. Cosand

Dr. Bowman resigned to accept an educational assignment with the Baptist Missions in the Philippines in 1958. The same year, Joseph P. Cosand (he received his honorary doctor’s degree from his alma mater, Whittier College, while here in Santa Barbara) was employed to begin the Fall semester as the first President of the college. Dr. Cosand had been a chemistry professor and later President of Contra Costa Junior College in the Bay area. He served his first year while the College was on the Riviera and supervised its moving to the Mesa campus during the summer of 1959.

The College went through a series of suggested name changes before settling on the name of “Santa Barbara City College.” On July 1, 1958, members of the Associated Student Body and faculty requested the Board to change the name of the college to “Santa Barbara Coast College”. The Board postponed the name change for community reaction. Later, on March 19, 1959, the students and faculty recommended the Board change the name to Santa Barbara College. The Board accepted that name since the former state college was now the University of California, Santa Barbara. Later however, under Dr. Cosand’s administration, on July 1, 1959, they settled on the present name, Santa Barbara City College.

The High School Board of Education started planning over a long period of time for a bond campaign and tax-override election for its own secondary and elementary schools as well as for the construction needs of the junior college. A bond campaign and election was authorized for $10,568,400 on March 25, 1962. Of this amount, $3,455,000 was for junior college construction. The bond issue passed, and the junior college bond money was designated for phase one of the Master Plan as designed by the architectural firm of Daniel, Man,, Johnson & Mendenhall of Los Angeles in consultation with Dr. Cosand, faculty, and staff, for an enrollment of 2,500 students.

Phase one included construction of (1) a library and classrooms; (2) student center, cafeteria, and classrooms; (3) science laboratories and mathematics classrooms; (4) gymnasium, shower and locker facilities; and (5) additions and modifications of the main building for administration, vocational education, business education, and social sciences.

It should be noted that the first Master Plan, 1962, adopted by the Board of Education recommended the purchase of land west of the Mesa Campus (now the West Campus) as soon as possible. On the occasion of the dedication of the Gertrude Calden Overlook on Jun 6, 1991, Bruce O’Neal, Board of Education member in 1962, informed me that the University of California urgently wanted the High School District to purchase the West Campus land for a total price of $100,000. It was an incredible bargain because it cost the Community College District $3,800,000 later. The High School District turned down the offer. It was not that the High School District didn’t have the money, it was just that the Junior College enrollment was so small that it was simply a lack of vision as to future growth and development of the College. Eleven years later, in 1973, the college purchased the property with a special bond election for $3,800,000!  The original master plan was for a maximum of 4,500 students if all land (including the West Campus) had been acquired in the early 1960’s.

If there is a message here, it is that every administration and citizens’ advisory groups have grossly underestimated the growth and expansion needs of the college.

Dr. Cosand worked closely with the high school district in preparing for a separate junior college district, as mandated by the Master Plan of 1949. He was a personal friend of Dr. Scharer, and that relationship facilitated his public relations in the community and helped to establish good relations with the Board of Education.

Criticism by a small group of citizens about policies and programs in our schools, the College and the Adult Education Division, surfaced during the big bond campaign in March of 1962. This early criticism resulted in the remarkable work of two women, Gertrude Calden and Alice Harbeson, whose son was attending City College. They were concerned about what was happening, and wanted to make the Junior College more visible and understood in the community. They organized the “Community Council for SBCC.”  Mrs. Calden was president for the first two years. They recruited (by early 1964) 157 members, and included in this group were:  Marie Lantagne, Dean of Women for the College; W.L. Fillippini, and Benjamin P.J. Wells, both of whom later became Board of Trustee presidents.

Dr. Cosand welcomed the needed assistance of this group in helping to reassure the community that the college was offering a sound educational program. This group answered charges being made that the college had too many small classes,  that fees should be charged for student parking, out-of-district students should be charged tuition, many budgetary items were unnecessary, etc. This group also studied major issues facing the college, especially the need for a larger campus for its future growth, and bond issues for new buildings. This support was deeply appreciated and effective in galvanizing community support. The group served like an unofficial board. When the new district was formed, and a new Board of Trustees elected in 1964, this organization was dissolved.

To make the college more comprehensive in scope and to more fully meet the college objectives of serving the community, Dr. Cosand and Dr. Scharer thought the Adult Education Center program should be part of the junior college, and be designated the Adult Education Division. Dr. Cosand wanted the evening college credit classes to be a part of the Adult Division, since most of those enrolled in the evening college credit classes were older adults, and it was the common administrative structure among junior colleges in California.

The very active Citizen’s Adult Education Advisory Council (see history of the Council in the Addenda) and I, the Director of Adult Education, were most apprehensive about being under the sponsorship of a new and smaller educational entity. Even though Dr. Scharer endorsed Dr. Cosand’s recommendation to become a part of the college, he left the final decision up to me, for he realized how strongly I opposed it at first.

This kind of consideration was unusual, but he liked the program and knew that it had strong community support, so he said that he would not force a separation. Being assured that the program would continue as usual, and that the Evening College would be a part of the Adult Division, this was convincing evidence that Adult Education should become a division of the College.

With the change, all evening programs for adults could be coordinated and duplications avoided – a situation which was replete with bitter conflict and confusion in other cities where there was a secondary school program and a junior college program competing for the same audience. The Advisory Council was still apprehensive about moving the Adult Education program, so Dr. Scharer addressed the Council and assured them that there would be no changes. Dr. Cosand was supportive and helpful. By now the program was large and popular, and making the move would benefit the College. The program became the Adult Education Division of the City College in the fall of 1959.

Paradoxically nine years later, because of continued differences, principally on hourly salaries paid in the Evening College and some procedural and philosophical questions (although there was never once a criticism or even a meeting called by the President, the Dean of Instruction, or anyone else, to resolve whatever problems existed), the Academic Senate recommended to the Board of Trustees that the Evening College be separated from the regular Adult Division programs. After a presentation on the issue by my assistant and acting director, Dr. Martin Bobgan (I was on sabbatical leave), and the president of the Academic Senate, Henry Bagish, to a subcommittee of the Board, the separation was again denied by a vote of the full Board for a second time. It continued to be a point of contention in subsequent years, and for the good of all the Evening College was separated from the Adult Division after I retired in 1972 during Dr. Glenn Gooder’s administration, even though the previous accreditation team report recommended keeping both programs under one administrator and adding “Extended Day” to the Adult Education Division name.

When the Adult Education Program was transferred to the college, all the buildings and real estate comprising the Adult Education Center complex were transferred when the Junior College District became official on July 1, 1964. In 1962, Winifred Lancaster resigned as Dean of Instruction and decided to return to teaching. Dr. Cosand appointed Robert Casier, professor of political science, as her replacement. He served that year and then took time off to complete his doctor’s degree and return to teaching. M.L. (Pat) Huglin, formerly an assistant in the Adult Education Division, was appointed as Dean of Instruction beginning the Fall of 1963. He served in that position until his retirement in 1986.

As previously reported, during the high school district bond campaign in 1962, considerable opposition had been expressed about school and college policies, and especially about expanding the City College on its present Mesa site. The administration answered by saying the whole question of expansion would be evaluated after the election. Dr. Scharer said it was imperative that the College get a firm commitment from the city about the proposed expansion of the Mesa campus. The College was dependent on the joint powers with the city for the use of about 20 acres of municipal facilities next to the College if the Mesa campus were to be expanded. Ann Gutshall (later a City College Board of Trustees member), a leader in the bond campaign and representing the PTA, urged the board to ensure full community understanding of the move if one were to be made, since the two organizations with whom she worked (SOS – Save our Schools, and the Citizens’ Advisory Council) had spent a good deal of time promoting the “Community Concept” of the City College for that successful bond campaign. Mrs. Ruth Nadel, president of the PTA, had her organization issue a statement in support of the bond campaign and having the college remain on the Mesa site.

President Cosand directed the Board’s attention to the resolutions by the City College faculty and the Steering Committee of the Community Council for Santa Barbara City College urging development of the college at its present location. Dr. Cosand’s Administrative Council also discussed the campus issue and vote to remain on the Mesa.

Now the bonds had been passed for junior college constsruction, some city officials were “opposed or reluctant” to sign a City College agreement for joint use of adjoining facilities. Arnold Jacquemain, High School Board member, and former City Council member, issued a two-page statement retracting his original position in favor of one large piece of land and building a new college from scratch. He said the Board looked over the Santa Barbara area, and found a large parcel of land for less than $7,500 per acre, but that estimated costs for replacement and development were so high, “frankly we cannot afford it”, and he changed his mind about developing a new campus.

Bruce O’Neal, president of the Board of Education, called for an adjourned meeting of the Board to be held on June 18, 1962, at 7:30 pm in the City College auditorium, for the purpose of a public meeting with elected and appointed officials of the City. Representatives from many organizations were invited for a public discussion on expanding the campus. Those invited were administrators from outlying school districts, PTA representatives, members of the Mesa and Fellowship Improvement Associations, Citizens Council for Santa Barbara City College, member so the Board of Education, local media, Chamber of Commerce, and 20 or more civic leaders, and others. In a two-hour meeting of 150 or more, people presented many testimonials pro and con, and resulted in a careful recapitulation of the work the high school Board of Education had done in arriving at the decision to expand the Mesa campus. David Licker, the lawyer member of the Board, proved to be invaluable in answering technical and semi-legal questions. He presented the Board’s reasons and decisions to expand the present campus.

Dr. Cossand prepared a paper dated April 4, 1962, comparing three possibilities for future development of City College, which all had been discussed by the Board earlier. The Community Council for Santa Barbara City College sent a letter dated June 7, 1962, to Dr. Scharer, and had Dr. Cosand’s support stating that $2,000,000 in savings to the District would result by staying on the Mesa.

Now that the Board was ready to award contracts for City College construction of phase one of the Master Plan, this meeting worked to “clear the air” and provided opportunity for all to express their ideas. Most responses were positive, and the meeting was necessary before awarding contracts. Dr. Cosand was an active participant in the lively hearing.

Later, during the middle of all this controversy, Dr. Cosand resigned at the end of the Fall semester, January 1963, to accept a position as Superintendent/ President of a large junior college district in St. Louis, Missouri. The Board and the community were surprised, as he had done so much in preparation for the formation of a separate junior college district, and in working with the architects in planning phase one of the Master Plan for the Mesa campus.

Since Dr. Cosand had given strong leadership in his short time here, David Licker, representing the Board, met with Dr. Cosand to see if there were any specific reasons for his resignation. Dr. Cosand replied that there was no unhappiness, but that this opportunity to develop and give leadership to a large junior college district in the Midwest was a challenge and an advancement of his profession career. California was prominent in junior college education, and most of the nation looked to California for leadership.


To complete the school year that Dr. Cosand had started, Douglas C. White, Assistant Superintendent of Santa Barbara City Schools, completed the year as Acting President. Dr. Robert C. Rockwell was employed in the summer of 1963. He had been vice president of Cerritos College. He was an English instructor in a junior college before becoming an administrator. Thus the College continued to have experienced college administrators during those early years.

Rockwell Administration
Rockwell Administration 1964-65


The Board of Trustees continued to hold meetings with city officials, and were encouraged by developing joint use agreements for use of Pershing Park, the tennis courts, and facilities, the Los Banos pool, La Playa Stadium, and parking areas; however, building plans were delayed six months in working out these agreements. The first award of the general contract on phase one was to be given to the lowest bidder at the June 27, 1963, meeting. Robert Kallman, a newly elected High School Board member who had defeated veteran Board member Bruce O’Neal in a board election on June 6, 1963, reported that a City Council member believed the Board had not properly followed some previous agreements. He said that the newly elected Mayor, Don MacGillivray, opposed the agreements the previous Mayor and Council members made with the High School District, and that he was also opposed to expanding the Mesa campus.

The Board refused to enter into another protracted debate on this issue, and refused to go along with Mr. Kallman’s request, made by the new Mayor and several City officers, to delay in the awarding of the general contract. Mr. Licker said, ”we cannot change every time a new Mayor is elected.” The Board voted to award the contract to the low bidder, Ralph T. Viola, Inc., for a total amount of $2,487,900, with Mr. Kallman dissenting. Mr. Kallman stated he was not voting against City College but rather “in favor of delaying the award one week . .  . to complete understanding with the City,” nevertheless he seemed unwilling to honor the good work done by the Board before his election.

Awarding the contract to Viola, Inc., proved to be so fraught with repeated requests for change orders, change of sub-contractors, and fines for delays that at one time Board member Licker said that, “if it had not been too late to cancel the contract, I would have recommended it.” On November 5, 1964, the Board rejected a Viola claim for excess costs of $58,303, after being warned that no more change orders would be approved. The claims persisted, but upon final inspection on March 12, 1965, the new buildings of phase one were accepted as of April 5, 1965, and would be ready for occupancy with the Board’s discretion to invoke liquidated damages for the delays in construction. That left the main building scheduled for remodeling as the last of the phase one plan. The bid for the work was awarded on April 19, 1965.

To counter all of Bob Kallman’s criticism, a Citizens Committee of 13 members named “Scope” was organized to look into all his charges. The chairman of the committee, Dr. Jack Rathbone, an orthodontist, held a community forum before a large audience at the Santa Barbara High School auditorium before the election campaign. He attempted to counter all these charges and confront him with facts about his statements. Mr. Kallman was elected to the Board, and he put in writing his criticisms. The “Scope” Committee also put in writing the results of their investigation of these charges, and in their report to the Board said, in part, that it “was a deliberate insidious attempt to deceive the people of Santa Barbara about public education.” After serving on the Board, and participating in the decision-making for several years, he modified his attacks and became somewhat more supportive to the broader concept of the area’s educational needs.

East Campus Library
E. Campus Library
Dr. Rockwell, 1965

Another insidious development at this time was more serious charges against the schools, the College, the University, churches, Parent-Teacher groups, and other organizations of all being “soft on communism.” These charges were made by a semi-secret community group known as the Santa Barbara chapter of the national John Birch Society. It rocked the community, the College, and the Adult Education Division. A more detailed report of this group, its charges, its exposure, and its interesting demise is written more fully in the Addenda.

Dr. Scharer issued a factual report on September 3, 1964, answering all of Mr. Kallman’s written and oral criticisms and those he continued to make during his early months on the Board. He opposed the use of Federal funds granted under the Economic Opportunity Act of 1964, as “welfare programs”, for City College students. He opposed the anti-poverty program known as the Work Training Program, Inc. These programs were important to the college and community and, since some unbelievable events (never repeated to this day) occurred defending these programs, a report about them is in the Addenda, entitled “The Work Training Program.” He asked the Superintendent  to investigate the Adult Education coffee fund, a “slush fund” Kallman called it, by asking the District Attorney for a ruling as to  its legality. The coffee fund was a result of selling coffee and cookies to Adult Education students during class breaks. The City Schools auditor and district attorney approved the establishment of such a fund. Expenditures were made to benefit the students and program. Unfortunately, other college divisions and the Superintendent- President did not have such a fund, so this charge plagued the Adult Division for years for having what they all jealously called, “Wake’s slush fund.” One Board member, its president, invited to attend a dinner at a local restaurant for a prominent speaker in Adult Education, refused to drink a glass of wine and paid for his own drink, since he thought the money was coming from an inappropriate source, but he did eat the dinner.

When the State of California passed the Master Plan of School District Organization in 1949 (Section 3581 of the Education Code), it mandated each county in the State to establish a committee, called the County Committee on School District Organization, to study and recommend to the State Board of Education on re-organization of school districts. The law also required that every high school district in the State join a junior college district as a part of each county’s master plan. The local County Committee had 11 members, and James R. Garvin was appointed to the original committee.  He later became chairman when the initial chairman resigned. He continued to serve when elected to the Board of Trustees of the new junior college district, and was elected its first president.

This special County Committee was later augmented by representatives from each of the elementary school districts in the county. Interestingly enough, of the seven Board members elected to the first Board of Trustees, three served at one time or another on this augmented County Committee before their election: Kathryn Alexander, Hope Elementary District; Benjamin P.J. Wells, Goleta Union Elementary District; and James Garvin, Montecito Union Elementary District.

Dr. Scharer initiated the first request for the County Committee to study the City College program to form its own district by sending an outline of the college instructional program on November19, 1962. The committee accepted this preliminary college plan and then reviewed all other statutory requirements to be fulfilled. In this original plan, Dr. Scharer included a statement about the successful $10,000,000 bond election of March, 1962, which allocated $3,500,000 for junior college construction. This bond issue and the building construction which followed became so entangled legally that the High School District had to ask local representatives in the State Legislature, Al Weingand and James L. Holmes, to enter special legislation to insure the proper division of funds, including funds received from the sale of bonds. The law was unclear, and the building projects authorized by the sale of the bonds could not be completed prior to the planned effective date (July 1, 1964) of the new junior college district.

During the County Committee’s study of proposed junior college districts, it was asked to consider the formation of a single county-wide junior college district. Mrs. Henderson, president of the Santa Barbara High School Board of Education, objected because of size and distance. The committee also realized all the complexities of the financial involvement in the on-going construction projects, so the idea was not pursued. However, later, when the Carpinteria  Union High School district was considering annexing, they again asked the committee to consider a “County-wide” district and to have a third college between Santa Barbara and Santa Maria. Delays in working out problems to meet the hoped-for separate district deadline of July 1, 1964, were caused by the lengthy details of arrangements and delays with the City in negotiating for a joint use of municipal facilities. Prorating the bonded indebtedness and unexpended bond funds required extensive study, legal opinions, appraisals, audits, and extension of deadlines to resolve these problems.

An adjourned meeting of the Board of Education was held October 10, 1963, to deal with the concerns expressed by the City College administration, faculty, and Adult Education staff regarding transfer of real estate and assumption of bonded indebtedness. Expressions were also made by members of the college advisory group, the Adult Education Advisory council members, other citizens, faculty, and administrators. Mrs. Lancaster asked “if there were danger of encumbering the junior college district with bonded indebtedness to the extent of jeopardizing the future growth and making it unattractive for annexation by Carpinteria.” George Browne, Business Manager, attempted to explain and allay these fears.

When the transfer of property to the new district was discussed, much concern was expressed because it seemed somewhat uncertain what would happen to the Adult Education Center property. The High School district had decided to keep the Adult Education property at 202 East de la Guerra Street, and Eric Maurer, former president of the Adult Education Advisory Council, and several Council members, wanted to know what would happen to the rest of the Adult Education property. Catherine Peake, also an Adult Education Council member, and daughter of Mrs. Alice Schott who had given the property to the schools, read a letter from her mother and addressed to the Board. It said in part, “if the Adult Center decides to go with the Junior College, I support such a move… I will resent it very bitterly if this property is sold. I wish it to remain the Adult Education Center. The dream of establishing a more complete Cultural Center here under the direction of the Adult Education administrative staff and Advisory Council has my enthusiastic support.” Mrs. Henderson, president of the Board, assured Mrs. Peake and others present that the property would not be sold, and implied that all, except the 202 East de la Guerra Street property, would be included in the petition to the County Committee for the establishment of a new junior college district. The City Schools wanted to keep the 202 East de la Guerra property for a possible administration center.

The transfer of the $7,000,000 of debt to the new district was justified by the Board because the figure “represented a reasonable compromise between the money spent for the City College from bond funds and the actual value of the City College campus.” Mr. Browne said this formula would “alleviate the present conflict between the two districts.” In answer to Mrs. Lancaster’s earlier question about the City College indebtedness, Mr. Browne stressed that there would be an unused bonding capacity of about $5,500,000 to complete the buildings in phase two of the College master plan. The High School District was concerned about their own lower bonding capacity which was needed to take care of housing for increasing enrollments. The High School District had used the full $.35/100 assessed valuation junior college tax for use by the district.

On March 7, 1963, the Santa Barbara High School District formally petitioned the County Committee for the formation of a junior college district which would be coterminous with the boundaries of the high school district and be effective July 1, 1964. The County Committee approved the petition which outlined the transfer of all property, except the 202 East de la Guerra building and land, used by the Adult Education Center, and the transfer of $7,000,000 of bonded indebtedness. It provided for $5,500,000 of the unused bonding capacity for the College and said “it is substantially more than will be needed to complete phase two of the present master plan for Santa Barbara City College,” and “that the maximum tax rate of $.35/100 assessed valuation shall be set for Santa Barbara Junior College District.” The petition went on to say that the amount of indebtedness to be assumed by the Junior College District had been discussed at length by the County Committee and the Board of Education, and was fair and reasonable to both districts.

The petition was approved by the County Committee and sent to the State Board of Education. Max Rafferty, State Superintendent of Schools, said in his recommendations to the State Board of Education, with his endorsement for approval: “The proposed $7,000,000 to be assumed in bond debt is somewhat higher (underlining by author) than a strict interpretation of the law would probably provide. County Counsel advised the Board that the matter was within its discretion. The Board desired to include that figure with its petition in order that the information be known before the State Board acted upon the matter.”

At one point, when the assumption of bonded indebtedness arose, George Browne wrote a letter to the County Committee in April, 1963, stating that unless the new junior college district assumes between $5,500,000 and $6,000,000 in bonded indebtedness, the high school district would be in trouble. Evidently, after further study, the High School District transferred $1,000,000 more than Browne’s letter indicated as a safety measure, wanting to avoid any later conflict over the issue by putting the actual figure in the petition and resolution which would be sent to the State Board of Education for approval. This is the basis, in part, for the belief, often expressed, that too high a price was paid for separation from the High School District. But it must be stated, auditor’s and appraiser’s reports of bonded indebtedness were submitted to the County Committee, and they finally accepted the transfer of $7,000,000 to the new junior college district. It was made a part of the petition. The separation proceedings were so involved that some 12 meetings were held to resolve all factors necessary to meet statutory requirements.

On January 9, 1964, Hal D. Caywood, Superintendent of Schools for Santa Barbara County, told the High School District that the State Department of Education had informed him of the approval to form a separate Junior College District, and had it duly recorded by the County Clerk. As of July 1, 1964, the Junior College District would be operative for all school purposes.

It should be noted that at this stage of development of the new Jr. College District,  since the boundaries were coterminous with the High School District, only three trustee areas were involved, and the Board would consist of only five members, if the Carpinteria Unified School District decided not to be annexed. William T.Carty, District Superintendent for Carpinteria, in a letter stated that their Board had visited the campuses of Ventura College and Santa Barbara City College, and “was convinced the programs of education are fine at both institutions.” However, Carpinteria agreed to be annexed to the Santa Barbara Junior College District November 30, 1964, provided that the District was not liable for any bonded indebtedness up to this date, and that the City College Adult Education program would also serve the Carpinteria district. Dr. Rockwell, then just President, instead of Superintendent, reported that he would agree to those terms. Carpinteria had also requested that two representatives serve on the Board from their area. They were informed that the County Committee determines the number for each trustee area based on population numbers.

The County Committee also questioned whether the large Adult Education program should remain with the College District, and whether all its land and facilities should also be transferred to the new district. A special joint meeting was held with the Executive Committee, the Citizens’ Adult Education Advisory Council, and the Community Council for SBCC (a citizens’ group) to discuss the place of the Adult Education Division in the event that the City College should have its own separate district. The two committees issued a very positive joint statement unanimously recommending that the program remain with the Junior College District. it was emphasized that much of the property had been given as a gift for Adult Education purposes, and some purchased just for Adult Education use. It should be noted here that the County Committee permitted Santa Ynez Unified School District, Lompoc Unified School District, and the Channel Islands to be annexed to the Santa Maria Junior College District.

After a study by the High School and Junior College Districts, based on population in the areas, Mrs. Elizabetta Henderson, president of the new Board of Education, Santa Barbara Junior College District (as she signed it) sent a letter on December 14, 1964, to the County Committee on School Organization and recommended trustee areas and their number of representatives. The County Committee approved the recommendation after a public hearing of administrators, and others affected by the trustee areas held at the City College on January 11, 1965. The recommendations were as follows:

1.    That the Board of Trustees of the Santa Barbara Junior College district be composed of seven members representing four trustee areas.

2.   That the four trustee areas be described as:

Trustee Area No. 1 – Carpinteria Unified School District – One member

Trustee Area No. 2 – Montecito Union School District and Cold Springs School District                                      – One member

Trustee Area No. 3 – Santa Barbara School District – Three members

Trustee Area No. 4 –  Goleta Union, Hope School & Elwood Union School Districts                                                                                           – Two members

Now that the Junior College District was operating, and the Carpinteria Unified School District had been annexed, the next step was to have voter approval at a special election to be held April 10, 1965, on the formation of the separate district, trustee areas, number of representatives, and candidates running for election. Winning contestants would become official trustee members on July 1, 1965.

Few new junior college districts in California were as fortunate as Santa Barbara in having such a highly qualified group of community leaders to agree to run for election to the new governing board and win. This community is indeed indebted for the accomplishments of this new Board of Trustees which solved unending problems of continuous development, growth and support of so many excellent programs for the young, and older adults in our community. Those who campaigned and promoted their election are proud of their achievement and the direction given this new institution.

New Board members:  Joyce H. Powell, Joe W. Dobbs, Eli Luria, Ed S. Santodomingo, and Leonard S. Jarrott were appointed to fill vacancies and later re-elected to the Board. They continue to serve and give superb service and direction to ever-increasing enrollments in the College and its Adult Education Division.  Former board members Ann Gutshall and Gary Ricks also served with distinction.

To show how well qualified the original Board members were, the following indicates the leadership qualities they possessed, as printed in a brochure in Dr. Gooder’s administration. It should be part of this history.

The president, James R. Garvin, attended Cincinnati University, was past president and member, Montecito Union School Board; past president, County Committee on School District Organization; past president, Santa Barbara School Board Association; Life Member, California PTA; past president, Santa Barbara Scholarship Foundation; and a Santa Barbara realtor, with extensive civic volunteer experience.

Vice President, Wilbur L. (Bill) Fillippini, was executive secretary, Santa Barbara County Building and Construction Trades Council; Journeyman, sheet metal worker; member, Alpha School Board of Directors; former member, Citizens’ Committee for Higher Education; member, Santa Barbara Scholarship Foundation; and is now retired as Administrator, National Training Fund, Sheet Metal and Air Conditioning Industry, Washington, D.C. He served on several Mayor’s committees as a consultant, and has extensive volunteer work.

Wilbur Filippini
Wilbur Filippini, Board Trustee

Kay Alexander
Kay Alexander, Goleta Trustee

Kathryn O. Alexander, B.A., Pomona College, graduate work, UCSB, Ph.D.; member, Hope School District Board of Trustees; Officer, Santa Barbara County School Boards Association; officer and member, Starr King Parent-Child Workshop; past officer, Hope School District PTA; Honorary Life Member, California P.T.A., and extensive civic volunteer work.

Sidney R. Frank, B.A., University of Minnesota; M.A., UCLA; Certified Consulting Meteorologist (CCM); president, SRF Research Institute; past president, Board of Industry- Education Council; former research meteorologist and instructor, TWA; former lecturer, meteorology, University of Missouri; former lecturer climatology, and meteorology, UCSB; instructor in adult education on meteorology; owner of Sidney R. Frank Group, a consulting organization; former vice president of North American Weather consultants and Aerometric Research Foundation; elected member Board of Freeholders, last revision of Charter, City of Santa Barbara; unofficial representative of County of Santa Barbara to State Resources Board prior to formation of Santa Barbara Air Pollution Control District; past president of Santa Barbara Science Engineering Council; past president of Santa Barbara Engineering Club; past president of Santa Barbara Seminar of the American Meteorological Society; extensive additional civic volunteer service.

Winifred Lancaster, B.S., University of Pennsylvania; M.A., University of Southern California; licensed psychologist, State of California; California State teaching credential; speech specialist, Santa Barbara County Schools; first Dean of Instruction, Santa Barbara Junior College; founder-president, Channel City Women’s Forum; President, Santa Barbara Citizens’ Council on Crime; and went on to serve on the Board of Governors, California Community Colleges, and later became a trustee, California State Universities and Colleges; member, California Postsecondary Education Commission; extensive additional civic and educational volunteer experience.

Dorothy Meigs
Mrs. Dorothy Meigs

Dorothy N. Meigs, A.B., and graduate work, Stanford University, graduate work, University of California, Berkeley; former instructor Santa Barbara High School and Santa Barbara State College; former board member and officer, Experiment in International Living; Board member and officer, Carpinteria Woman’s Club; past president and member, American Association of University Women; member, League of Women Voters; extensive additional civic volunteer experience.

Benjamin P.J. Wells, L.L.B., J.D., Blackstone School of Law 1975; Postmaster, Goleta, vice president and member, Board of Trustees, Goleta Union School District; past president, Santa Barbara County Chapter, California School Boards Association; District 5 representative, California Community and Junior College Association; past president, Goleta Union School P.T.A.; past vice president, La Colina Junior High School; honorary Life Member, California P.T.A.; member, Citizens’ Planning Committee on Growth and School Problems; past president, Santa Barbara Area United Way, Inc.; former instructor in Business Management in adult education; extensive additional civic volunteer experience.

Two of the charter members, Kathryn Alexander and Sidney Frank, are still serving on Board (1991). The community can be justly proud of this board’s work in developing a new college to heights of its achievement and excellence in the community and in the State of California.

Board of Trustees during Dr. Rockwell’s Tenure

Rockwell Administration
Rockwell Administration 1964-65

For the following Fall term, 1965, the City College day credit enrollment was 2,258, and the Adult Education Division’s was 6,497, of which 1,230 were in the Evening College credit program. Mrs. Meigs asked why such a small number attending College were receiving the A.A. degree. Superintendent Rockwell said this was normal, since the College had an open door policy on enrollment and few were attending to receive just an A.A. degree.

Dr. Rockwell proceeded with a plan to carry out phase two of the Master Plan for a large construction program. A citizens’ committee headed by John Timmons, a prominent businessman, studied all aspects of the proposed building plans, and found that a tax rate increase was needed as recommended by the administration. The committee also urged the Adult Education Center to obtain the large vacant corner lot next to it, or enlarge and modernize the buildings on the present site.

The need for a new Cultural Center had been studied by the Adult Education Advisory Council Building Committee since 1955. A new Cultural Center was now planned to replace the old and inadequate facility at 914 Santa Barbara Street. A sum of $2,600,000 for the Cultural Center was added to the new proposed building construction program in its bond proposal. The Citizens’ Committee approved the bond and tax-override election in the amount of $18,098,000 and doubling the tax rate to $.70/ 100 assessed valuation. The committee also endorsed the plan to develop the Mesa campus, but concluded the property west of the campus, owned by Jean Paul Wolffe, was too expensive at $100,000 per acre, even though the original Master Plan recommended acquiring all of that land.

The election was held November 8, 1966. There was little opposition, except from the Apartment Owners Association, and the Tax Action group, to the proposed tax rate increase, but the election, which required a two-thirds majority, lost by a narrow margin.

The Citizens’ Committee had recommended keeping the Mesa campus and limiting it to 5,000 students, which was 1,000 more than decided previously, and to follow through with the Board’s previous commitment to purchase and develop a Goleta campus for 5,000 students. The Board of Trustees decided to reduce the amount of bonds from the $18 million in the failed election of 1966, to $2,835,000 for a new bond and tax election in 1967. The tax rate increase would be the same as in the previous bond election – double the rate to $.70 / 100 of assessed valuation effective July 1, 1968. The bonds, if passed, would be augmented by State construction funds.

Again, a large citizens’ committee supported the total package, and even though the Santa Barbara Taxpayers Association supported the bonds in the election, just as in the previous election, again opposed the tax override. The bond and tax override failed again by a narrow margin. And to add controversy to the election, Fred Hand, representing the Tax Action group, appeared before the Board just before the election and said their group suggested again that one large parcel of land be obtained to take care of all future growth. The College Board was committed to keeping the Mesa campus because the Carpinteria Unified School District was annexed with the understanding that the College would remain on the Mesa, so any thought of selling the campus was dropped.

The multi-campus decision of the Board was not unanimous. Winifred Lancaster voted against a multi-campus, and presented a paper recommending one large campus, and cite figures to show the large savings involved by selling the Mesa campus and developing a single new campus. Dr. Rockwell presented a long research report in reply, backing the Board’s intent to have a two-campus approach for meeting long-term needs.

When the Hollister Company of Goleta learned of this possible campus extension, they offered the District in February, 1968, a gift of any 150 acres out of a 400-acre hilly parcel in Winchester Canyon, five miles north of Santa Barbara. President Garvin said that with the bond failure (in 1966) the District would have to seriously consider accepting this gift, even possibly developing one large single campus. The architectural firm of Arendt, Mosher & Grant was employed to make a feasibility study, and came up with 85 acres as a suitable site. Parking was limited but one Board member observed they could cut into the hills later for parking. The Board voted five to one (Mr. Fillippini was absent), with Mrs. Lancaster dissenting, to accept the Hollister Company property in Winchester Canyon. She still believed a large single campus would be more economical and save millions by eliminating duplicate features.

Another large piece of property facing lower San Marcos Road was also offered for sale by the Prevedello property interest. Part of it would possibly be given as a gift. Many of the Board favored this location, but since the District had no funds for purchase of any property for a campus, the offer could not be considered. State bond propositions to assist all college construction in California also failed to pass, so obtaining land for another campus was impossible.

The planning continued for more construction on the Mesa campus to meet the increasing enrollment, so the Board voted to go ahead and take care of the building needs on a year-to-year basis.

The Board had a good deal of discussion about meeting the continued growth and particularly financing “relocatables” (temporary classrooms). At one time (May, 1967), as recorded in the minutes, Mrs. Meigs, Board member, asked, “if anyone had considered seriously her suggestion about using tents as a temporary housing measure.” Mr. Wells, replied, “that the subcommittee had indeed talked about tents, but thought their use would be psychologically detrimental, that the relocatables would be usable for many uses  that the tents could not accommodate, and that there were matters of security and the danger of damage from high winds and rains.” The matter of adequate housing was, indeed, becoming critical.

A new bond campaign for $5,500,000 was scheduled for the Spring of 1969 for needed construction on the Mesa campus, with no tax-override increase this time. It became apparent that with so much invested, the Mesa campus would continue to be developed as the main campus. To promote the campaign, Gertrude Calden, past president of the Adult Education Advisory Council, who helped organize the “Council for SBCC” in the early 1960’s, was asked to be co-chairperson with Christopher Story, president of the Apartment Owners Association.

LORENZO DALL’ARMI 1968                                                                                        Dr. Rockwell resigned in the Spring of 1968, before the bond campaign, to start a new junior college to be known as the College of the Canyons near Los Angeles. Lorenzo Dall’Armi, Business Manager, a native son, former elementary school principal and prominent local citizen, was appointed Acting President. During that year a good deal of student unrest occurred, and made for a troublesome year. The bond election of $5,500,000 was held on June 23, 1969. It passed with a four to one margin. During Mr. Dall’Armi’s tenure as Business Manager, he carried on a continuous landscaping program to give the campus an attractive appearance, despite the closeness of the buildings and the many temporary buildings used as classrooms. He was responsible for adding the many needed portable classrooms as enrollments increased.


Julio Bortolazzo
Julio Bortolazzo  

Dr. Julio Bortolazzo, a native son and past Superintendent-President of the multi-campuses in San Mateo, and later the Stockton Colleges, was appointed Superintendent-President in the summer of 1969, replacing Dr. Rockwell. He, too, faced student uprisings which were appearing on all college and university campuses. He was aware of the Work Training Program, Inc., and its success in working with hard-core unemployed in the community, and especially the high incidence of reading difficulties among the unemployed. He worked with the Adult Division in addressing a large group representing all community agencies involved with the Work Training Program in assessing unmet needs of the disadvantaged in the community.

LEARNING RESOURCE CENTER, 1969                                                                      
When he learned that Royce Adams and Robert Carman, now retired, were working on the development of a Student Learning Resource Center, he questioned why they had not emphasized the need for a program for those with reading difficulties rather than just offer tutorial services. Of course, lack of money was the reason, since a reading clinic was in their plan for the Resource Center. He sent the two of them to Sacramento where they presented a proposal to the Community College Division for financial assistance. According to a recent talk (1991) with Mr. Adams, they were rewarded with a $10,000 grant. He said Dr. Bortolazzo gave an important boost to the actual formation of the Learning Resource Center, and that it was the beginning of the College’s concern for the dyslexic student and those with general reading difficulties. A report on the highly controversial Work Training Program is included in the Addenda.

Dr. Bortolazzo studied the Evening College controversy in the Rockwell administration and saw no reason for change. Russell Wenzlau, now retired, was appointed to the Adult Education staff as Coordinator of the Evening College, and there continued to be no problems whatsoever. It became obvious that the previous controversy was contrived, and had no basis in fact under the strong leadership of a new Superintendent.

Another problem addressed was the continued rejection of older students for admission to the nursing program by the head of the department. It became so severe that Dr. Bortolazzo required all those scheduled for refusal be first checked with his office. The Licensed vocational Nursing program in the Adult Education Division also ran into problems of over-supervision, and on appeal, had the Superintendent save it. The previous administration had given the head of the nursing program such a free hand that all programs were suffering until the Superintendent reorganized the program.

At the end of his first year, he decided to retire here and live where he grew up, attended local schools and college, and where he began his professional career as a teacher.

Lorenzo Dall’Armi was appointed the County Schools Superintendent upon the retirement of long-time Superintendent, Fred Greenough, in 1970. He left the college during Dr. Bortolazzo’s administration to accept this new position. One of his first acts was to work with the new Superintendent-President, Dr. Glenn Gooder, and the Board in having the District’s name changed from Santa Barbara Junior College District to Santa Barbara Community College District.

DR. GLENN GOODER, 1970                                                                                               Dr. Glenn G. Gooder, president of Los Angeles City College, became Superintendent-President in 1970, following Dr. Bortolazzo’s retirement. Enrollments continued to grow even faster than anticipated, and it became imperative to obtain more land or go high-rise (an impossibility on the beach front), so even though the High School Board had once before refused to consider paying as much as $100,000 per acre for the Wolff property (West Campus), it was a different story now. The College Board scheduled a bond election during the Spring of 1973 for $3.8 million to purchase the 34-acre Wolff property west of the main campus. The property now had a new owner; the price had increased to $111,765 per acre. Even so, the college was fortunate that it was available for purchase in 1973.

This beautiful beach front property was attractive to developers. In 1965, one developer proposed a large motel on the property, but the idea was dropped for lack of funding. Later, in April 1966, a Citizens’ Committee, headed by a retired corporate executive, planned to develop a large theatre arts and convention complex, and share the facility with the college. The idea was based on getting all local large theatres to cooperate. The Alhecama Players, in Adult Education, was the largest amateur group, and it was also approached for active participation. However, the large theatres did not favor the idea, so the proposed cooperative project ended.

WEST CAMPUS PURCHASE, 1971                                                                                
In 1971, Fred Eissler, an elementary school teacher and active environmentalist, saw a bulldozer pushing dirt around for development of this property. He called his friend, Sidney Frank, a Board member professionally involved in the environment, and discussed his concern about the commercialization of what is now the West campus. He asked him if he thought the Board would approve if he went to the City Council and made an appeal on the basis that use of the property for educational purposes would be environmentally more sound than use as a commercial property. Mr. Frank told him that he was confident that the rest of the Board would approve and urged him to proceed with his concept. Subsequently, he appeared before the City Council, and stated the case on the benefits of an environmentally sound use of the property for educational uses as opposed to commercial development.

The City Council agreed, and ordered the grading stopped. There was newspaper publicity about Mr. Eissler’s operation and about the Council’s action. It was a close call, but the property was still available for purchase in 1973.

In November, 1972, I retired as Director-Administrator Dean of the Continuing Education Division, and was employed part-time as a consultant to Dr. Gooder to perform a number of tasks for the college. Mr. Wells, Board member, suggested that I be assigned as Coordinator of the new bond campaign and head an organization to promote it. I agreed, but shortly after was criticized for being paid by the district, so I resigned to voluntarily head the bond campaign to purchase the land for a new West Campus. Eli Luria and Gertrude Calden, past presidents of the Adult Education Advisory Council, were asked to be co-chairpersons of the campaign. Gertrude was serving for the second successive time as a bond campaign co-chairperson. The Board minutes shows that Mr. Wells reported bond issues were failing throughout the State, and taxpayer’s groups were being organized to limit further public expenditures for any purpose.

The first talks in the campaign given by Dr. Gooder and Dr. Sorsabal, the new Business Manager, explaining the desperate need for more land, were received with little enthusiasm; they were most discouraged. An intensive, but conservative, campaign was waged and, despite an uprising state-wide against bond and tax elections, the campaign was highly successful with an almost 71 percent plurality. It was the last successful bond campaign in California, according to some reports, before the passage of the famous Proposition 13 – a voter revolt against bond elections or tax increases of any kind. It was the first such revolt in the nation, but many states soon followed suit with similar Proposition 13 laws.

This Proposition 13 changed the traditional local property tax assessment and State apportionment for college financing. All revenues from assessed property in the Junior College District are now divided by the total revenue of $1.00 per $100 assessed valuation from all districts in the County, which for the year 1989- 90 gave the college 3.8626 cents from each dollar. The local revenue is then subtracted from the State allocation formula for college funding. This is a simplified explanation of the new funding procedures and tends to challenge the long standing and successful practice of local control.

Acquiring the West Campus enlarged the Mesa campus to 74 acres (East campus 43 acres, West campus 31 acres), plus approximately 20 acres of land on which the municipal facilities are used in agreement with the City of Santa Barbara, for a total of about 94 acres. A footbridge was constructed to connect the East and West campuses shortly after the West campus was purchased.

The Campus Master Plan, adopted in 1974, was initially planned for 6,000 students. It was followed until 1984, when the plan was amended by deleting a 2,000-seat pavilion/ performing arts center. This center was to be funded by the community. From the very beginning, the college has always been open to any cooperative community effort to develop a performing arts center which would enhance the College facilities in its early days, serving the community, and tie down that land from commercial development. Now the land was owned by the College and needed for more buildings and facilities to take care of greatly increased enrollments. A much needed multi-level parking structure was planned in its place, so the pavilion/ performing arts center was deleted from the Master Plan.

The maximum 6,000 enrollment estimated in the 1974 Plan for both campuses is now (1991) fast approaching 12,000 – about one hundred percent more than planned. This history of the college has revealed that every administration, since the college was reorganized in 1946, has grossly underestimated the growth of the college in every one of its many Master Plans. All during the late ‘70s and most of the 80’s, a remarkable trend occurred. During that time when college enrollments were steadily increasing, elementary and secondary enrollments were steadily decreasing. Most districts in the South Coast area were either closing schools or selling school properties (the college purchased two elementary schools for its Continuing Education program during that period).

Now (1991) the enrollment situation in the elementary and secondary schools is just the reverse. Enrollments are increasing dramatically just when the college is reaching its maximum capacity. With the new water resources now (1991) stabilizing in the area, in a few years there will be the inevitable residential and commercial development, meaning an increase in population and more students.

There are several other factors which have contributed to high enrollments. With the remarkable record the college holds with the highest transfer rate of its students (1990) in the state to four-year colleges and universities, its reputation has attracted many out-of-district students. Transfers will mount because of continued large increases in state college and university fees and tuition. All this plus the “free flow” attendance rule, which exists in the state, permits students from any community college district to enroll without paying out-of-district tuition. This permits transfer students from all over the state to enroll in a beautiful community college in a lovely coastal resort city. And the result of all these factors affecting attendance has resulted in the surprising statistic that fifty-one percent (51%) of all the first-time entering freshmen were from out-of-district’s service area (1990). Is it any wonder why the college is reaching its ultimate enrollment capacity?

The continued restrictive financial formula imposed by the state, which limits the number of units of attendance it will support, has put a serious financial squeeze on the college’s ability to maintain the number of courses necessary to accommodate its full enrollment. So restrictions on class sizes are sometimes set by the sheer physical limitations of classrooms, no new sections are added where needed and courses are closed to enrollment. When preregistration is permitted for current students for the next term, known as priority registration, there are often long lines and a mad scramble for students to register on a first-come, first- served basis to get the classes they need before being closed. It is becoming a state-wide crisis, and if not more state funding is forthcoming or fails to meet the needs of enrollment increases, there are few alternatives but to restrict attendance or increase tuition rates dramatically.

The projected enrollment for the college in the very near future (as this is written, 1992) came as a complete surprise and shock to me. If no immediate planning is done to meet this inevitable increase of possibly three to five thousand additional students, the consequences could have been catastrophic. I have spelled out the scenario which could have taken place in a position paper, “A Final Viewpoint,” which was distributed to all concerned with the College and especially its Continuing Education Division. The Superintendent responded by having Dr. Bobgan issue a statement he directed which endorsed the integrity of the Continuing Education Centers for adult education use, and a commitment to programs at about the same level as now (1992), without being displaced by the inevitable growth of the credit classes. It was an important landmark statement and much appreciated by all working in adult education and especially the community and its huge constituency. It is all outlined in the Addenda, page 78.

Making community college education available to only those who have the ability to pay for it, if tuition rates are increased, violates the very precept of the community college – which is to make education available to all who want it, need it, and can profit from attending. The lack of adequate funding for all of education is a shameful admission of misplaced priorities in our state and country which has always based its government and its way of life on an educated citizenry.

Similar state financial restrictions have been placed on the college’s Continuing Education program. Only here the state completely eliminated financial support for large areas of it curriculum years ago, when the first financial crisis in the state occurred. This has resulted in high fees charged for individual courses which do not qualify for state funding. It makes them available only to those who have the ability to pay.

In my first year as Director in 1947, the first fees were charged. At first it was just one dollar for as many courses as one wanted to take. This appears to be a ridiculously low fee, but when all courses were free, from 1918 to 1947, and the fact that most adults were enrolled in just one course, it was understandable. Later the fee was changed to one dollar per course.

Some years later, after the program became a part of the college, the fee was increased to two dollars per course. Because of a lack of funding for a great many courses, fees have (1991) escalated to the $33 to $50 range for some courses which excludes many who simply cannot pay.

The steep increases in fees at all levels of higher education, including adult education, is as one university put it, “that education is no longer seem as a public good, but as a private benefit enriching the individual as opposed to society.”

If the Chancellor of the University of California carries out his threat (as reported in the Los Angeles Times, October 18, 1991) of restricting enrollments because of a lack of state funding, and the Community College follows suit, a state-wide crisis would be eliminated.

With the successful passage of the bonds to purchase the property for the West Campus in 1973, a Citizens’ Committee which studied space needs for all colleges’ programs also recommended that the district try to obtain more land or facilities for the Adult Education program. The existing Center on Santa Barbara Street was woefully inadequate and no parking facilities. A building subcommittee of the Adult Education Advisory Council had meetings periodically, since the failure of the bond campaign in 1966, to discuss a new Cultural Center for Adult Education, and to plan for ways and means to alleviate the limited space at the existing Center. When Dr. Gooder became Superintendent, he met regularly with the building committee consisting of Gertrude Calden, Eli Luria, and Dr. Martin Bobgan, vice president of the Continuing Education Division, with Dr. Eugene Aiches, a Foundation Board member, and me as co-chairmen.

Dr. Gooder made it clear that since building funds were not available to Adult Education, a solution would be to form a Foundation where private gifts could be made to serve these needs. With the urging of Eli Luria, Dr. Gooder had the Board of Trustees endorse the concept, and proceeded with the Articles of Incorporation. This is how the Foundation was conceived.

After directing the successful campaign to purchase the West Campus, Dr. Gooder asked me to help organize the Foundation, recruit its first Board of Directors, complete details for an operating group, and later serve as its Executive Director.

Wayne Kees, a prominent businessman who headed the large Sambo restaurant chain, was the first president. His business kept him out of town so much that Gertrude Calden, Vice President, served in his place most of the time. She continued as vice president, and Eli Luria became the second president, and Mrs. Calden the third president. The first fund raising was for the Adult Education Fund.

This Foundation has grown enormously in size. Its assets, as a result of recent gifts (1991), will approach $9 million. Many of the largest gifts have been made by Adult Education students or those long associated with the program. Donations and gifts to the scholarship fund have increased dramatically, and a new “Adopt a Student” program (1991) has just been launched. Students have a wide choice of funds available to them. The Foundation is serving an increasingly significant and necessary role in the continuing growth and development of the College. It has just put together (1991) a $23 million fund raising plan to meet the ever-expanding needs of the college.

DRAMA/ MUSIC BUILDING 1977                                                                                     
With the passage of the bond issue to purchase the West Campus, the first building to be constructed was the much needed Drama/ Music building. The 400-seat theatre arts and music complex was completed in June, 1977, and the theatre was named in honor of James R. Garvin, the deceased Board member, who served as the first president of the Board of Trustees.

It is interesting to note that the Drama/ Music building was originally planned to be located adjacent to the Humanities building, and extend out on that point of land. Those plans changed with the purchase of the West Campus. Since the college had no funds to start a building program on the new campus, and to avoid the criticism of issuing public bonds for its purchase, but no way to begin development, building plans had to change.

The money scheduled for the Drama/ Music building and its architectural plans were simply reversed to mirror the image of the original design, and constructed on the far western edge of the new campus. This was good evidence of the college’s intent to develop that land for campus use.

CATHEDRAL OAKS SCHOOL PURCHASE                                                                        
Also during Dr. Gooder’s administration, the first new Continuing Education campus was acquired. Eli Luria had been president of the Adult Education Advisory Council, and was much aware of the limited facilities for Adult Education; he persisted in attempts to improve the situation. He was now a member of the Board of Trustees, and when the Goleta Unified School District declared the Cathedral Oaks Elementary School as surplus, because of declining enrollments, Mr. Luria urged me to make immediate contact with the Goleta Board president, a former student of mine. Dr. Gooder was out of town. The Goleta Board was considering selling the school to any commercial business making the highest bid. SBCC Boars members Sidney Frank, Benjamin P.J. Wells, Eli Luria, and I met with the Goleta school board representatives, and indicated the College’s interest, explaining that the law mandated that other public agencies would have priority in purchasing the property.

Through the combined efforts of the College Board and the Foundation office, the College used a reserve fund in the Adult Education budget to make a large down payment to purchase the school in 1978 through a lease/ purchase agreement. The school was converted to an Adult Education Center with good parking, and was named the Goleta Valley Adult Education Center. In February, 1984, it was re-named and dedicated as the Selmer O. Wake Continuing Education Center, much to the author’s surprise and deep appreciation.

Dr. MacDougall and the Board of Trustees proceeded to carry out the long-range building plans with the acquisition of the West Campus. After the completion of the Drama/Music building, the long-time planning and need for a modern library and learning resource center was completed with the construction of this $7.1 million building. It was dedicated during the summer of 1989, and officially named the Luria Library and Learning Resources Center, a magnificent building and a well-deserved tribute to Mr. Luria.

Helen Pedotti, Eli Luria, and Peter McDougall
Helen Pedotti, Eli Luria, and
Peter MacDougall.
Learning Resource Center

It is not often in the history of an institution that a single individual can make such important and lasting contributions in its development as has been shown in the dedicated work of Eli Luria. He was first introduced to the College through his wife’s participation in Adult Education ceramics classes and, later, when she became a student at SBCC. He became a member of the Citizens’ Continuing Education Advisory Council and, later, its president. (The division name was changed from Adult Education to Continuing Education Division during Dr. Gooder’s administration.) Mr. Luria became aware of the limited space for classes and parking at the Adult Education Center on Santa Barbara Street, served on the Council’s building subcommittee, and was the driving force to obtain the Wake Center in 1978, and the Schott Center in 1981. He has said one of his most satisfying accomplishments in acquiring these two centers was while working with the Board, the administration, and the Foundation. He contributed financially for equipment at the two centers, and assisted with the planning and layout of the two former elementary schools for Continuing Education Centers. I was privileged to work closely with him, and the Board in fulfilling my own personal “dream come true”.

Eli Luria was co-chairman of the successful 1973 bond campaign to purchase the West Campus, and he made further financial contributions for the landscaping of this new addition to the college. He initiated and encouraged the development of the Sculpture Garden area and contributed to the re-designing of the entrance to the College. He served as the second president of the Foundation for SBCC, and has given continuous leadership to that organization. He made a substantial financial contribution toward the construction of the new library recently (1991) named to honor his leadership and contributions to the college. He and his wife have contributed well over half a million dollars for college buildings and projects. He is currently (1991) president of the Board of Trustees. The exemplary work of Mr. Luria and the contributions of his family are simply unmatched by anyone. His impact on the college’s community-wide program will always be remembered.

The Luria Library/ Learning Resources Center was followed by the construction of the Interdisciplinary Center at a cost of $4.85 million, and completed in the summer of 1990. The former library building has been remodeled for a Student Services Center, at an estimated cost of $2.9 million, and was dedicated in April, 1991. To relieve the long-standing parking problems, a new West Campus $4.5 million parking structure, to add 450 parking spaces, is expected to be completed by the Fall of 1992. Also a new Business and Communications Center is planned for the West Campus, which will provide facilities for an enrollment which is fast approaching 12,000 full-time students.

A special “overlook” area, situated on one of the higher rise sections of land on the West Campus in front of the new library, was completed and dedicated on June 6, 1991, and named the “Gertrude Calden Overlook”. I was privileged to participate and comment on her extensive service to the College and community. The “Overlook” commands beautiful views of the ocean and campus, and will accommodate small classes, study groups, and individual use.

 Mrs. Calden has the longest record of service to the College and its Continuing Education Division of any individual in the community. I have already cited her leadership in organizing a “Community Council for SBCC” under Dr. Cosand’s administration in 1960. She served as president of this group for two years. She was co-chairperson of two successive and successful bond campaigns, one in June 1969, for $4.5 million for construction of new buildings, and the second in 1973 for $3.8 million, to purchase the West Campus. She was president of the Continuing Education Advisory Council, 1968 – 69; member of an advisory committee to the Board of Governors, California Community Colleges Continuing Education Committee, 1970; and second president of The Foundation for Santa Barbara City College. She received a presidential appointment to the National Advisory Council on Adult Education, and worked under three presidents. For six years she travelled all over the United States, visiting and evaluating adult education programs; and for 23 years she served on the Board of Directors of the Work Training Programs, Inc., which got its start in Adult Education in 1964. She had had an outstanding career in support of the College. She was equally as active in numerous other civic and political organizations. No one is more deserving of being remembered than this able, generous, and gracious lady.

It is interesting to note the dramatic increase in enrollments over the years. The Master Site Development Plan set up a projected enrollment in four stages after the West Campus was acquired.

1975 –              3,772 student capacity

1980 –              4,080 student capacity

Interim Plan –   5,040 student capacity

Maximum –      6,000 student capacity

This maximum capacity plan in 1980 of 6,000 (Full Time Equivalent) students for both campuses is now handling in excess of 11,500 (FTE) students (1991)!  The planned addition of a Business/ Communication building will provide even more facilities to accommodate enrollments of more than 12,000 students by 1993 or 1994 – one hundred percent more than projected in 1980.  All this increase occurred during the 1980s when elementary school enrollments were dramatically decreasing. Now (1991), all enrollments are exploding. A possible housing crunch looms ahead if local and state plans are not soon developed to meet it.

The addition of the new buildings on the West Campus has permitted the gradual removal of almost all of the temporary buildings on the Main Campus. This will give the college more open areas and a better architectural appearance. With the eventual attendance crisis, removal of more temporary buildings may need to be delayed.

The Foundation continued to raise money for scholarships and all college programs.  After serving seven years as its Executive Director and raising its first million dollars, I retired. Having served more than 40 years in education with the Santa Barbara Schools, City College, and the Foundation, it was time to retire. The continued growth of the Foundation and its enormous contribution to the College District has taken place under Dr. MacDougall’s administration and its Foundation Executive Director, James Minow.

Dr. Gooder continued to administer a college growing continuously in enrollment. He was most helpful in assisting with the organization of the successful 1973 bond campaign and The Foundation for SBCC. He resigned to semi-retirement in the Spring of 1978, and now (1991) has his own community college consulting firm, and often fills in for short periods of time as Acting Superintendent-President of community colleges undergoing changes in administration. Dr. Gooder also served as Acting Chancellor of California Community Colleges, filling a vacancy there for a short period.

Dr. David Mertes, President of San Mateo Community College, was appointed in the summer of 1978 to be the new Superintendent-President at SBCC. Earlier in his career, he had been in charge of their Evening College and Adult Education program and was encouraged to submit his application by me and Dr. Bobgan. When we learned the deadline was approaching and he had not filed, a second telephone call was placed. We were eventually rewarded with his appointment. While President, he had to deal with the unknown financial funding and effects of the new Proposition 13 law which had been passed by a state-wide referendum. Later in his presidency, the local City Schools District declared three elementary schools as surplus because of declining enrollments. One of the three schools was considered for purchase by the College District to replace the downtown Adult Education Center, which had no parking facilities and very limited classroom space for its large and growing community-wide program. It was decided that Garfield Elementary School was the best constructed facility and provided the better parking area.

When asked to start the negotiations, I worked with Dr. Mertes and Eli Luria in arranging a trade of the downtown property for Garfield School. Both properties were appraised, and the City Schools wanted $400,000 for it. The Adult Education property was appraised at a like amount – so an equal exchange was possible. Later, the City Schools decided it wanted $425,000 for its property. Since some time had elapsed and property values were increasing, a reassessment of the Adult Education Center property was made, and increased to $425,000, making an even exchange possible again. Then the City Schools decided it wanted a further increase in price for its property, so Dr. Mertes was urged by me to explain to the City Schools Superintendent that the districts were just dealing with taxpayers’ property and that if one waited longer, the real estate value of the downtown Adult Education Center property would possible increase faster than Garfield School property because of its more valued downtown location. The bidding stopped.

914 SANTA BARBARA STREET (Adult Ed Center), 1986                            
Complicating the exchange of properties was the interest and involvement of the Santa Barbara Trust for Historic Preservation. A large part of the Adult Education Center property at 914 Santa Barbara Street included much of the old Royal Presidio grounds. The Trust learned of the possible exchange of properties and was interested in purchasing all the Adult Education Center property at 914 Santa Barbara Street. The property at 814 Santa Barbara Street was not included at this time. Progress was stymied because the Historic Trust group had no way to immediately raise the money, and they were depending on a State Parks bond issue to be passed. There was a good deal of frustration with the lack of progress, and at a subsequent Foundation Board meeting, after much discussion of the problem, it was suggested that Eli Luria, past president of the Continuing Education Advisory Council, and past president of the Foundation Board, meet with Helen Pedotti, a member of the Historic Trust Board, and chairman of its acquisitions committee, to see if was possible to move the negotiations off dead center.

Mr. Luria and Helen Pedotti (whose parents gave the Adult Education Center property to the City Schools originally) met several times to work out an acceptable solution. Both pledged personal funds to initiate the purchase by the Trust. Papers were signed to purchase the Continuing Education Center based on the hopeful passage of a State Parks bond issue. The bond issue failed, so Mrs. Pedotti personally pledged collateral and paid the interest on a bank loan to raise the cash to meet the Trust’s commitment to the College. When the bond issue later passed, Mrs. Pedotti got out from under her obligation. It was a most generous act on her part, and showed not only her integrity, but her determination to resolve a serious problem facing the City Schools, the College, and the Historic Trust.

Mrs. Pedotti served on the Citizens’ Adult Education Advisory Council (its name at that time) during Dr. Cosand’s administration (the early ‘60’s) when the college was a part of the High School District. Many years later, in 1984, she became a member of the Foundation Board of Directors. For the last two years (1990), she shared her leadership abilities in a successful million dollar fund raising during 1987-1988. She is now directing a plan to raise $23 to $25 million to meet College needs.  She also appointed an adult education subcommittee to keep the Foundation members informed about the Continuing Education program.

She has continued the Schott tradition of service to education in this community. Her sister, Catherine, also served on the Citizens’ Adult Education Advisory Council, as did her daughter, Tina. I also recruited her sister, Catherine, to serve on the original Board of Directors of the Foundation.

The Adult Education property at 814 Santa Barbara Street was sold in 1986 to the State of California/ Department of Parks and Recreation to complete the land needed for restoration of El Presidio Santa Barbara project. It was sold for $410,000.

Being more aware than anyone of the impact of the gift of Mr. and Mrs. Max Schott of the Adult Education Center property, and the continuous development of the Adult Education program, it was proposed to Dr. Mertes and the Board to name the Garfield Elementary School property the “Alice F. Schott Continuing Education Center.” It was dedicated on June 17, 1981, on the 100th anniversary of her birth. It serves as the central headquarters for the Continuing Education Division of the College.

Having separate facilities and campuses for Adult Education served as a continuing influence in developing the present large and varied program. In addition, more than 90 off-campus sites are used for additional classes. More than 2,500 courses annually enroll more than 35,000 (1990) different adults during each school year. Few, if any, cities in the state or nation the size of Santa Barbara have such a large and diversified program with two separate centers serving the south coast. More than 35,000 (1990) different adults enroll yearly – about one in every four living in the area.

Dr. Mertes resigned in 1981 to become Superintendent-President of the Los Rios Community College District in Sacramento. Later he became Chancellor of the Community Colleges in California.

Dr. Peter MacDougall, an administrator at Pierce College and later in the central office of the Los Angeles Community College District, was employed in the summer of 1981, and is the current Superintendent- President. He is completing his tenth year (1991) for the longest tenure of any local Superintendent –President. Of all the past Superintendent- Presidents, Dr. MacDougall has been the most actively involved in community affairs.

Board of Directors 1988
Board of Directors 1988

He was named by the Santa Barbara Chamber of Commerce as among the 12 most influential people in the community. He is a Board member, United Way (past president); Vice President, Channel City Club; Board member, Nuclear Age Peace Foundation; Board member, Work Training Programs, Inc.’ Santa Barbara Industry Education Council (past president); and newly elected second vice chairperson of the Cottage Hospital Board of Directors. He also received the “Paul Harris Fellow” award of the Rotary Foundation of Rotary International for service to education and work in the community, and is continuously serving on new committees.

Professionally, he has been equally as active. He is a board member and former chairperson of the Accreditation Commission for Community and Junior Colleges/ Western Association of Schools and Colleges; board member, Association of California Community College Administrators; past president of the California Association Colleges; and first vice president, Community College League of California. Again highly regarded and valued as a community college leader, in 1989 he was selected as one of the top 50 community college leaders in the nation by the University of Texas Community College Leadership Program.

In June, 1991, Dr. MacDougall was presented a plaque by the Santa Barbara Citizens’ Continuing Education Advisory Council in recognition of his ten years as Superintendent – President, and praised for his local and state-wide professional leadership, and for his executive work in the community. It is obvious he has given out not only exceptional guidance in the administration of the College, but he has been recognized in the community and by his colleagues for his outstanding and numerous contributions.

It should be noted here that the administrator with the longest administrative service to the College is my successor, Dr. Martin Bobgan, vice president of the Continuing Education Division. The Board of Trustees presented him with a plaque (September, 1991) marking his 30th year as an administrator. He had done a superb job of giving continued leadership to a program unmatched in the state and one of the finest in the nation.

Since the College was re-established in 1946, during the subsequent 45 years of its operation, it has experienced extraordinary growth. It continues to serve the ever-increasing educational, vocational, and continuing education needs and interests of this community. The unfolding and development of the extensive counseling, the large and varied curriculum, the special programs, the student services, and the great community response should be documented sometime in a separate report.

The College is recognized as one of the premier community colleges in California. A recent (1990) accreditation team of the Western Association of Schools and Colleges commended the College for its many fine programs, and for the highest successful student transfer rate to four-year institutions in the state. Its Continuing Education Division was again singled out for praise as outstanding, and has been so rated by every accreditation team for the past 30 plus years.

The College’s main campus is divided into East (original site) and West locations, plus two Continuing Education campuses occupying former elementary schools. Its curriculum is comprehensive in scope. It is known as a teaching college and has a superior faculty, a consistently supportive Board of Trustees, and a Foundation whose members are excited about its excellent programs and service to the community.

When the College’s schedule of credit classes for the Spring term of 1992 arrived, it was almost unbelievable to see the fantastic growth which has taken place in my 45 years of observing its development. Is it any wonder at my amazement when one realizes that when I started in the Fall of 1946 there were less than 100 students, and today the enrollment is reaching 13,000 credit students, not to mention the 36,000 different adults who enroll in its Adult Education program each year.

The College has been fortunate in having strong administrative leadership and an excellent faculty over the past twenty or so years which has contributed to its remarkable success. Its Continuing Education Division has been often cited as a model for other community colleges. Residents of the South Coast area consider the College and all its programs as one of its most highly cherished assets.

Selmer O. Wake           January, 1992


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