Lone Star College System
Trustee, District 7
Linda S. Good
TPP endorses Ron Trowbridge
Linda S. Good and Ron Trowbridge are both current members of the board previously elected at-large. They are now competing for the newly created single member district 7.
LINDA S. GOOD
Linda S. Good is the Directing Attorney for Lone Star Legal Aid, a nonprofit law firm dedicated to providing legal assistance to low-income persons, where she has worked since her graduation from law school in 1994.
She is the past President of the Texas Democratic Women of Montgomery County, has served as a Democrat precinct chair and election judge, is a member of the Montgomery County Election Equipment Task Force, is the chair of the Lone Star College Paralegal Program Advisory Committee, and is a member of the Supreme Court of Texas Statewide Pro Bono Committee.
On top of giving hundreds of dollars in donations to Democrats Barack Obama, Bill White, and Wendy Davis, she has also contributed to several charities and organizations, including: Lone Star College Foundation, United Way, March of Dimes, and the Southern Poverty Law Center.
Mrs. Good says the three main reasons she is running for office are:
- To continue the work of increasing transparency, accountability, and fairness for all who have business with the college.
- To expand and support Lone Star Promise which provides privately-funded scholarships to well-performing full-time students who are not poor enough for Pell Grants but would be over-burdened by student loans.
- To assure that the quality of instruction and relevancy of offered programs remains high and are provided at affordable cost.
Among her qualities that makes her best qualified for this office, Mrs. Good states:
- She has missed very few meetings, even attending within 24 hours of undergoing surgery and within 2 hours of sustaining a broken nose.
- Her legal training allows her to understand the nuances of a host of situations impacting the college.
- Her connections with students, faculty, and staff allow her to benefit from a variety of perspectives, rather than solely the information of the administration.
- She is the only board member who is a community college graduate, she is the spouse of a Lone Star College professor and dean, and she mentors and employs the college’s students.
Mrs. Good believes that the college’s success indicates that it is doing well. She says the college has grown into a national and international higher education leader, serving as a model for other institutions. She says that LSCS produces 2/3 of the first responders and nurses working in the greater Houston area. She says that because of conservative financial policies and innovative and nimble programming, the college is able to meet the needs of its students while serving the local businesses and communities well.
Mrs. Good says that she believes that taxes should be kept as low as possible, and supports the college’s tradition of keeping taxes low while also offering a good value for students.
She believes the three biggest challenges facing the institution are:
- Balancing enrollment trends with shrinking state funds. She says she values non-reliance on state funds, and believes it is essential that LSCS expand further if enrollment growth requires it.
- Improving the ratio of full-time/part-time instructors. She would like to see more full-time instructors hired because: studies show access to instructors outside of class improves success, and part-time faculty aren’t required to be available outside of class; she claims the college can better compete for state funds by improving student success with full-time faculty; she claims that under the previous chancellor, the full-time/part-time ratio sank so low it threatened the college’s accreditation.
- Limiting student loan debt. She says she supports the chancellor’s efforts to obtain greater control over how much student loan debt students incur while at LSC. She says she supports paid apprenticeship and intern programs that keep college costs down, as well as the privately funded Lone Star Promise scholarship program.
While we appreciate her service on the board, we believe she does not share our focus on a few issues that are critical to the college, namely, remedial courses and on the academic environment. A few specific issues that concern us:
- She has consistently voted for all capital expenditures regardless of voter desires. She voted for the revenue bond (which does not need voter approval), after voters defeated the general obligation bond in 2013. She voted for reallocating money from the 2015 to the east Aldine project after the federal funds for that project were denied. Those bond funds had been for a project at the North Harris campus that were deemed no longer necessary, and voters were told the funds would not be reallocated.
- As Chair, she is known to rule the board with a heavy hand, often issuing “fiats” disguised as challenges.
- She has been described as a burden on staff and administrators, as she crosses the line from board member to micromanager, making their jobs more difficult.
- She is against concealed carry on campus, and is for gender-neutral bathrooms.
- She has demonstrated a willingness to raise taxes and student fees to pay for faculty and staff raises.
- She consistently advocates for more expenditures, and has never advocated for a cut.
- From what we can tell, she has at the most voted against an agenda item twice, thus punting on her fiduciary duty.
Ron Trowbridge is the former Vice President of the Hillsdale College, the conservative bastion in Michigan. He has also served as the Chief of Staff for Chief Justice Warren Burger, and as Director of Educational and Cultural Affairs, to which he was appointed by President Ronald Reagan. In retirement, he became an adjunct professor of English at Lone Star College, and was elected to the Lone Star College System Board of Trustees in 2012. He was previously elected as a city councilman for two terms in Ann Arbor, Michigan, running as a conservative and friend of Bill Buckley. He is widely published as a conservative commentator and academic.
Dr. Trowbridge lists 11 goals, for which he is running for reelection:
- Ensure student academic success in the classroom.
- Increase student graduation rates.
- Ensure that students get proper counseling.
- Treat students not as numbers but as family.
- Work with local employers to hire our students.
- Seek private-sector funds to help low-income students attend college.
- Put forward no bond unless it is absolutely needed by indisputable evidence.
- Keep property taxes low.
- Ensure that the college’s budget is tight and sound.
- Keep focus on education, not politics.
- Ensure free speech on campus.
Dr. Trowbridge believes he is the best candidate for this position because he has wider academic and educational experience than any other person in the entire Lone Star College System. He is endorsed by the other two conservative members on the board of trustees, Dr. David Holsey and Dr. Kyle Scott, as well as the Chairman of the Lone Star College Foundation.
Dr. Trowbridge believes the college is effectively fulfilling its role as an institution, and believes that the new chancellor, Dr. Steve Head, is perhaps the best community college chancellor in the country. Dr. Steve Head was brought in to replace the previous chancellor, Dr. Richard Carpenter, after the failure of the 2013 Lone Star College Bond, which Dr. Trowbridge sought election campaigned against during his first election. Dr. Trowbridge believes that the current tax level is acceptable, but that they must always seek to lower it. He believes that it is preferable to raise tuition rather than property taxes if the situation calls for it, as this makes users pay rather than imposing a socialistic redistribution of income seizure upon taxpayers.
Dr. Trowbridge says that the biggest challenges facing the college are:
- Spending: He says that the board always needs to keep a watchful eye on spending taxpayer money. He believes no bonds should be put forward unless proven necessary by indisputable evidence, and that he sees no need for any bond in the near future.
- Student success: He believes the biggest academic challenge is student success in the classroom, improvement in graduation rates, and employment after graduation.
- Free speech: He says he favors no safe spaces, no trigger warnings, no punishment for “microaggressions,” no speech codes, or “free speech zones.” Instead, he believes the entire college system should be a free speech zone.
Dr. Trowbridge is incredibly overqualified for this position, and LSCS has been blessed to have a man of his prestige as a board member, as well as a professor. Dr. Trowbridge is one of the few members of the board consistently fighting for conservative values and fiscal responsibility, and it would be a shame is voters missed this opportunity to reelect him. We proudly endorse him for reelection.