College of DuPage board chair quits abruptly

CHICAGO (Sun-Times Media Wire) - The chairman of the College of DuPage board of trustees, who has led reform efforts at the school, abruptly resigned Sunday in a letter to faculty and students, citing only “personal reasons” for her departure.

Katharine Hamilton called it an “honor” to serve nearly three years on the board, including the last eight months as chairman, the Chicago Sun-Times is reporting.

“It is with sadness, then, that for personal reasons I am resigning from this board effective immediately,” Hamilton wrote. “I have enjoyed working together with my fellow trustees to build upon the strengths of COD and address its future needs.”

She could not immediately be reached for comment Sunday night.

Hamilton has presided over a tumultuous period that led the board in October to vote to fire College of DuPage President Robert Breuder. Trustees voted 4-1 to fire him in the wake of internal investigations that, according to a resolution, found evidence of “misconduct and mismanagement” that Breuder “participated in, oversaw or failed to prevent.”

It said he “violated specific policies established by the college, violated board of trustee and legal directives, breached his duties and engaged in conduct damaging to the reputation of the college and the reputation of the office of the college president.

College of DuPage Vice Chairman Deanne Mazzochi said Hamilton's decision came as a surprise to the school. a "passionate advocate" for reform at the school.

“Kathy Hamilton was a passionate advocate for COD reform and delivering a 21st century education for the benefit of students and taxpayers alike," Mazzochi said. "We are saddened that Kathy Hamilton will not continue in her role at College of DuPage, and we wish her well. We were surprised to learn of Kathy’s decision, but the Board will continue to address the many challenges that lie ahead for COD, including an imminent ruling from the Higher Learning Commission."