Volume 46 Number 3
Achievement for promoting ethnic minority issues
In a first-ever CCA award, Fola Odebunmi, the president of the United Faculty of North Orange Community College District, was honored with the Mary Ann Pacheco Ethnic Minority Award during the recent Winter Conference in Palm Springs.
“Fola Odebunmi is the perfect choice for this award,” Kathy Boettger wrote of her colleague in a nomination essay. “She lives and breathes as a dedicated professional person who has supported, promoted, recognized and educated our community college family regarding ethnic minority issues.”
Boettger reported that Odebunmi has been involved in a variety of activities that have advanced the learning conditions of students and faculty as well as the academic achievement of ethnic minority students.
Odebunmi has made time for a number of organizations aimed at advancing equality. She is a founding member, a member of the Executive Board and a parliamentarian of the newly formed Southern California Council on Black American Affairs, which functions as a collaborative voice promoting the academic success of black students, and the professional development of faculty, staff and administrators.
She is also a volunteer mentor with the Puente Program at Cypress College for the past three years, supporting Hispanic students through home visits, editing term papers and taking them to cultural functions. In addition Odebunmi is a member of the Orange County INROADS group, a nonprofit organization whose mission is to find talented minority students and develop them into corporate and community leaders.
CCA established the new award to honor Mary Ann Pacheco, a Hispanic female professor at Rio Hondo College who has been tireless in her efforts to involve all faculty in student and teaching issues, and has also served as a former CCA President, CTA Board Director and NEA Director. The Mary Ann Pacheco Award will be given annually to honor those who have supported and promoted ethnic minority issues on campus.
On hand to recognize and present Odebunmi with the award was Cynthia Swann, minority community outreach program director for the National Education Association.