Tarrant County College chancellor resigns more than 3 months after vote to fire him

·1 min read
Rodger Mallison/rmallison@star-telegram.com

The Tarrant County College chancellor who the board of trustees voted to fire more than three months ago has officially stepped down from his position, according to a news release from the countywide college system.

Eugene Giovannini will be replaced as chancellor of Tarrant County College system by Elva LeBlanc after the board accepted his resignation Thursday night.

The board voted 6-0 on March 17 to fire the chancellor, with one member absent, at a special meeting.

Giovannini, who was hired as chancellor in 2016, appealed the decision.

The board placed the chancellor on leave in February pending an investigation after a former employee of the college said in a lawsuit that Giovannini harassed, abused and retaliated against her after she spoke to a female subordinate, who she claims was Giovannini’s girlfriend, about corrective action regarding her behavior.

Kristen Bennett, who served as the fundraising executive in charge of the nonprofit TCC Foundation, alleged in the lawsuit filed Feb. 7 that she was improperly disciplined by the chancellor when she began to intervene in conflicts with the subordinate who had a personal relationship with Giovannini.

The woman who Bennett says was the chancellor’s girlfriend was not named in the lawsuit.

The allegations in the lawsuit sparked an investigation into Giovannini by an independent firm hired by the college.

LeBlanc, who was appointed interim chancellor Thursday night, served as the executive vice chancellor and provost, responsible for the planning, development and administration of the college’s academic affairs from 2017 until March, when she was appointed as acting chancellor.

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