Lou Anne Bynum

The Long Beach Community College District is ending its contract with interim superintendent-president Lou Anne Bynum, a respected administrator who has worked at the college for more than 20 years.

Bynum replaced Reagan Romali, who was fired by the LBCC board almost exactly one year ago following months of accusations of wrongdoing between Romali and some members of the board.

The reason for Bynum’s departure was not immediately clear, but she had been negotiating a contract extension.

Board President Uduak-Joe Ntuk only said in a statement that the board and Bynum “could not come to a mutual agreement regarding the extension of her current contract.”

College officials said in a statement they will be appointing a new interim superintendent-president Vice President of Student Services Mike Munoz.

The possible extension of Bynum’s contract had been on the board’s agenda for weeks, with a closed session meeting scheduled for Tuesday night. Her contract was set to expire March 13.

Ntuk said that the the board would meet Tuesday night to make two interim appointments: Munoz would be promoted to interim superintendent-president position, and the school’s dean of counseling and student support services, Nohel Corral, would be promoted to Munoz’s old position.

Both Munoz and Corral are expected to begin in their new positions March 14, but Munoz’s contract comes with a nearly 15-month term that will run through June 2022.

Ntuk also announced that the board was suspending the search for a permanent replacement for now with the search expected to resume next year. The board entered into a formal agreement with a search firm in December 2020.

“We want to ensure that we have enough time to find the absolute best final candidate for Long Beach City College,” Ntuk said. “Because that’s what you, our students, faculty, classified and managers, all deserve — the best.”

How much Munoz will make over the next year as superintendent-president will likely be announced Tuesday night. Romali made over $297,000, not including benefits, in her last full year with the school, according to figures reported by Transparent California. Bynum was making $288,000 in base-salary through this current contract.

Bynum did not respond to requests for comment.

Jason Ruiz covers City Hall and politics for the Long Beach Post. Reach him at [email protected] or @JasonRuiz_LB on Twitter.