Ibrahim Naeem's appointment came by the slimmest of margins a 4-3 vote by the PCC Board of Trustees and over the objection of an open-government watchdog who charged that Naeem's job description was changed illegally. Naeem
has been active in Pasadena politics for decades.He was executive director of the Pasadena branch of the Urban League from 1985 to 1990 and held the same position with the Coalition for a Non-Violent City from 1996 to 1999.
During a rally in November 1989, he
declared that Pasadena's failure to respond to charges of institutional racism "may cause civil unrest of such magnitude that the pageantry and affluence of Pasadena may be disrupted.'
The Board of Trustees voted Wednesday night to make Naeem
the supervisor of the Community Education Center
, where he
has been working part-time for a couple of years.James Kossler, the college president, downgraded the job title from "coordinator' to "supervisor' last December, after board members questioned whether Naeem was qualified for the job.
A coordinator would need a master's degree, which Naeem
does not have.
will fill a position vacated by a Latino administrator.Yslas said that while the debate has overtones of being a "black- brown' issue, the real problem is the way in which Naeem
voted to hire Naeem
Connie Rey Castro, the only Latino on the board, voted against hiring Naeem
but said her objection was to the way Kossler reclassified the position without consulting the board.
Brown said Naeem
is the most qualified candidate.
Susanna Miele, who voted to hire Naeem
, said that tensions between minority groups are becoming more common, as groups come closer to sharing equal portions of the local population.