Farmer retires after six years at Cerritos


Aya Abelon

William “Bill” Farmer, Jr. will wrap up an extensive career working with California community colleges over 30 years on Aug. 26, which is his last day on Cerritos College’s campus. Farmer served as the Cerritos College Interim President between 2008-2009, during which he managed the budget without resorting to any layoffs, furloughs or salary cuts.

Anthony Hodge and Anthony Hodge

After working 30 years at California community colleges, six years at Cerritos College, Vice President of Academic Affairs and Assistant Superintendent William Farmer will retire at the end of August.

Farmer’s last day on the Cerritos College campus is Aug. 26.

He said “Cerritos College is a wonderful community college with many talented faculty, staff and administrators who care deeply about student success.

“I have been honored to be part of such a fine organization to work with many talented people for the past six years.

“I believe the college is in better shape as I leave than when I arrived and I hope and believe my efforts have played a part in that improvement.

“I wish the college nothing but the best in the future.”

Farmer sent an e-mail to faculty members addressing his retirement at Cerritos College.

During his six years with Cerritos College, Farmer served as the Vice President of Academic Affairs and Assistant Superintendent, and Interim President at Cerritos College.

While working as Interim President, he helped oversee the construction on campus, helped balance Cerritos’ financial stability, and removed Cerritos from warning status with “the Accrediting Commission in less than a year by addressing four critical recommendations,” according to his e-mail.

Serving as Vice President of Academic Affairs and Assistant Superintendent, Farmer helped restore enrollment management, secured up to millions of dollars in grants to support Cerritos, and helped established the Student Learning Outcome.

Taking over as the Interim Vice President is Executive Dean Marilyn Brock.

She said, “retirement is a personal decision. And people decide to do it different times in their career.”

Brock also said, “I think we both respect each other professionally, and we both work well together.”

Brock has had some experience working as the Interim Vice President of Academic Affairs when Farmer was the Interim President.

Stephen Johnson, Vice President of Student Services, talked about Farmer’s work at Cerritos College.

“He has been somebody who has been very caring about student success, and making sure that we have excellent faculty,” he said.

“I wish him well in his retirement. Hes had a long career in with working with colleges and academic life. And I think he will look back on those years very fondly, and he’s earned a good retirement,” he said.

Farmer was an English professor at Pasadena City College from 1981 to 1993.

He also worked as the Division Dean of foreign languages in from 1993 to 1997 and then as a associated Dean of Instruction from 1997-2000 at Pasadena.

He worked at Los Angeles Mission College as Vice President of Academic Affairs from 2001 to 2005 until arriving at Cerritos College in 2005.