Town Council trustees resolve conflict; restructure executive committee during special meeting

La Jolla Town Council board president Cindy Greatrex and trustee Michael Dershowitz (who chaired Tuesday's special meeting).
La Jolla Town Council board president Cindy Greatrex and trustee Michael Dershowitz (who chaired Tuesday's special meeting).
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La Jolla Town Council board President Cindy Greatrex and trustee Michael Dershowitz (who chaired Tuesday's special meeting).

The La Jolla Town Council’s new executive committee

Board president:

Cindy Greatrex

First vice-president:

Steve Haskins

Second vice-president:

Peter Wulff

Past president:

Rick Wildman

Secretary:

Sonia Marie Olivas

Treasurer:

Yolanda de Riquer

Town Council trustees resolve conflict; restructure executive committee during special meeting

After weeks of finger-pointing and accusations that some feared threatened to derail one of La Jolla’s oldest and most venerated community organizations, the La Jolla Town Council moves forward with a reconfigured executive committee and a few apologies.

By Pat Sherman

Discord among members of the La Jolla Town Council’s (LJTC’s) executive committee — which led to the resignations of board president Cindy Greatrex and three executive committee members — was apparently resolved during a special meeting Sept. 4, called for by council trustees Steven Haskins, Nancy Gardner and Peter Wulff.

The meeting was held to discuss the actions of immediate past-president Rick Wildman during an Aug. 2 executive committee meeting, and the absence of first vice-president Ken King from regularly scheduled executive committee and board meetings. Action items on Tuesday’s meeting agenda included the censure of Wildman and the removal of King from his role as first vice-president.

During the August LJTC meeting, Greatrex abruptly resigned from her position as president, followed by the subsequent resignations of fellow executive committee members John Weinstein (second vice-president), Sonia Marie Olivas (secretary) and David Woo (treasurer).

Though at the time the executive committee members declined to elaborate on the reason for their departures, during Tuesday’s meeting, held at the La Jolla Rec Center, Weinstein said they stepped down “partly in protest” for the way Wildman treated Greatrex during the Aug. 2 executive committee meeting.

Recounting the events that led to his resignation, Weinstein said he received a phone call from Wildman the night prior to the Aug. 2 meeting, “just basically criticizing the current president with things that didn’t really make sense to me, that seemed kind of trivial and manufactured.”

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Former town council first vice-president John Weinstein listens as the organization's executive director, Julie Duepner, recalls the Aug. 2 executive committee meeting, which led to the censure of immediate past-president, Rick Wildman.

Weinstein said he felt there was “some other agenda” behind the call, noting that Wildman also phoned other trustees that evening.

At the executive committee meeting the following night (at which King was not present), the trustees discussed King’s absences during a three-month period.

Though King said he told Weinstein in advance that the executive committee meetings occurred at the same time as mandatory board meetings of the Rotary Club of La Jolla (for which he serves as treasurer), and that he was taking some vacation time, Weinstein said King “never responded to Cindy or any of the other executive committee members about his absence or made any effort to do other work.

“There was no reason he couldn’t have (taken on) other responsibility, whatever time was convenient for him,” Weinstein said.

Though Wildman said King had been in communication with him during his absence, Weinstein said King should also have been communicating with current council president Greatrex and other executive committee members.

“It just seemed like they were kind of hatching some plan, like they had something going on,” Weinstein said.

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