CMC Board election: District 6 candidate Pat Chlouber |

CMC Board election: District 6 candidate Pat Chlouber

Special to the DailyPat Chlouber.

Voters throughout the multicounty Colorado Mountain College district will choose four members of the college’s seven-member board of trustees this fall.

While trustees are chosen from specific areas, everyone in the college’s tax district votes for everyone. Since all of this year’s candidates are from other counties, the Vail Daily will provide a brief look at the people running for seats on the board.

Friday: District 2 candidates Kathy Goudy and Stan Orr.

Saturday: District 4 candidates Richard Hague and Robert Taylor.

Sunday: District 5 candidates Ken Brenner and John Fielding.

Today: District 6 candidates Pat Chlouber and Wes Duran.

Name: Pat Chlouber.

Residence: Leadville.

Occupation: I am currently serving on the Colorado Charter School Institute Board of Directors. I’m a former Colorado teacher and retired from the U.S. Department of Education.

What prompted you to run for a seat on the CMC Board of Trustees?

I moved to Leadville in 1976 with my husband, Ken, and our son, Cole. Ken is the founder of the Leadville Trail 100 race series and the Leadville Legacy Foundation. I have devoted my career to teaching and education. I taught in Leadville for 20 years and served on the local school board. During that time, the importance of having a college in our hometown has become more evident each year. I have witnessed first-hand the successful and meaningful partnerships among the college, school districts, government, businesses and the communities

CMC is providing quality education to their students and our citizens. CMC is not only following the leading trends for colleges across the country but is setting the bar high in the expansion of Internet as the primary tool for distance learning, expanding to baccalaureate degrees, increasing partnerships with four-year institutions for smooth transitions, concurrent enrollment, reverse-transfer students from four-year colleges who seek an education at community college and recruiting baby boomers who desire a change of career or may engage in public service.

My enthusiasm for CMC and my service on the Lake County Board of Education for nine years, the Colorado State Board of Education for five years and as the U.S. Secretary of Education’s Regional Representative from 2001 to 2009 in six Western states has provided me with a comprehensive background to run for this seat.

What’s your opinion about the college’s recent move to a four-year degree?

The continued expansion of the educational opportunities with four-year degrees at CMC is extremely important to the future of the college, students and well-being of the local economy. This is one place students can access a four-year degree with realistic investments for their future and the future of our rural areas. One of CMC’s greatest attributes is its unique ability to successfully educate within the diverse and varied communities and counties that comprise the CMC district.

There should be an objective and thorough evaluation regarding the success of the new degree programs to determine the efficiency and effectiveness of the programs.

As trustee, I would definitely advocate for baccalaureate degree programs and the expansion of choices with the community, prospective students, colleagues and the legislature.

What does CMC need to do to keep college education affordable and attainable for district residents?

CMC is in a unique position as one of only two community colleges outside of the state system. The college has a great deal of autonomy with its budget because of the way it is funded – about 71 percent coming from local district, 9 percent from the state, 19 percent from tuition and 1 percent from other sources. It is not as dependent on state or federal funding and the rules that come with it. With 22 percent of its assets in reserves and controlling expenditures in a challenging economy, the college can remain affordable. CMC has a tremendous opportunity to grow and enlarge its student population, which also grows its funding base. CMC is absolutely a great buy for students. The tuition is reasonable, and the outlook is great.

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