By Misty Severi
City lights lit up the night as Mary Figueroa and Bill Hedrick were sworn into their offices on the Riverside Community College District’s Board of Trustees in Downtown Riverside on Nov. 29.
Figueroa was re-elected and Hedrick was elected to serve on the Board of Trustees on Nov. 8. Each term lasts four years.
Chancellor Michael Burke presided over the ceremony, beginning with introductions of the guests and ending with their oath of office.
“I would like to extend a personal thank you to the family and friends of our incoming trustees in attendance tonight,” Burke said. “I would like to thank your support of them and your tolerance of us despite all the time we take them away from you.”
The ceremony itself was short. In Figueroa’s remarks she talked about her reaction to the election and her realization that the people who have the power is not Trump, but the country.
“I asked a friend a few days who was going to be here tonight ‘what does it all mean? We work so hard and yet how does evil still win, what does it mean?’” Figueroa said. “She goes ‘it’s not over with, because God is still in control.’ and that was really inspiring to me … I realized that this was bigger than just one man. And that the people who really make the difference here is all of you.”
Figueroa who represents Area 3, ran for re-election this past November completely unopposed for the first time in the 21 years she has served on the Board.
“This was an election unlike any other election I’ve ever been in,” Figueroa said. “I actually miss the campaigning, but I didn’t miss all the work … It’s a great experience getting to represent this district again for another four years.”
Hedrick won his election representing Area 1, beating out former Board of Trustees Vice President Nathan Miller.
“I am very excited about the opportunity to serve in this capacity,” Hedrick said.
Hedrick plans to bring attention to services that the school provides that students are not aware of.
“We have folks who could benefit from the career and technical education program who are unaware of what is even offered,” Hedrick said. “I would like to shine a light on all of the very positive things that are available.”
Hedrick’s wife Beth was beaming with pride as she attended the ceremony in support of her husband, and plans to stand at his side at other local events.
“He has such extensive knowledge and experience in education on both sides,” Hedrick said of her husband. “From being a school board member, to representing both teachers and students. He has a lot of knowledge and he just lives and breathes education.”