President Tod A. Burnett announces retirement from Saddleback

Time Flies

Time Flies: Burnett hosts a ‘meet your president’ in the quad. (Saddleback College 2008)

After nine years with Saddleback College, president Tod A. Burnett announced his plan to retire in the summer of 2017.

Burnett has served as president since 2008. The typical tenure for a president in the state of California is three years and Burnett’s nine years is a true testament to his dedication to Saddleback and its success.

“We been so successful with our faculty, staff, management, students, community we’ve really transformed Saddleback college over these last eight years,” Burnett said.

When asked what his proudest accomplishment at Saddleback has been he doesn’t know where to even begin. Undoubtedly so, Burnett writes the Annual State of the College report where he covers the year’s top achievements and the hopes of the coming year. For 2016’s report named “A Great College to Work For” he touches on topics such as higher admission rates, the 4,000 students who transfer to four-year colleges and the grand opening of the new Sciences Building.

When Burnett leaves his post as president many wonder about the future of Saddleback. Student success is always at the forefront of Burnett’s vision.

“I really hope the momentum throughout the campus continues because it really has been energized everywhere on campus,” said Burnett on his hopes for the future of Saddleback College.

In his nine years of hard work and dedication he has placed Saddleback in a position for continuing success. The search to replace Burnett will be a long process, thus the timing of his announcement. He stated that doing so would ensure a smooth transition to new leadership and finish off the school year.  

“His leadership and care for our community has allowed for the growth of  many of our campus’ services, including the student life and VETS program,” said Lucky Hendrix, Associated Student Government President, in the press release.

One may envision retirement as long relaxing days by the pool, golf, endless vacation however Burnett has a different idea. His future goal is to take his leadership skills and experience to a place where a new challenge and vision is needed.

What will Tod A. Burnett miss the most about Saddleback College?

“Oh that’s easy, the students, staff, faculty and community here!” Burnett said.

It is evident in his responses that Saddleback has become family to him. It goes without saying that Mr. Burnett will be missed on campus and leaves some big shoes to fill. A great thanks goes out to him for creating such a thriving community here at Saddleback where students of all walks of life can come and truly flourish.