07/02/2012 07:01:47 PM PDT :: The Los Angeles Unified board has rejected all of the finalists to succeed the district's retiring inspector general and will launch another nationwide recruiting drive for candidates, officials said Monday.
Last Thursday, as Inspector General Jess Womack prepared to retire after a decade with the district, the board voted in executive session to appoint Deputy IG Alfred Rodas as the interim chief. His appointment took effect Monday.
Rodas is a certified public accountant who joined LAUSD in 2000 and has overseen the Internal Audit Division since 2005. He earns about $163,000 annually.
"None of the final candidates was the right match for the moment," board member Steve Zimmer said Monday. "The IG is an absolutely pivotal mechanism of public accountability. It's one of the most important and least high-profile roles."
The Office of Inspector General conducts audits, investigations and reviews to detect and prevent waste, fraud and abuse. The IG reports directly to the school board.
"The clear direct-report of the IG to the board is one of the important checks and balances in the entire process," Zimmer said.
Zimmer was tapped by his colleagues to meet with the district's Personnel Commission, as it prepares to launch another candidate search.
"We want to frame the recruiting differently, with a mission around integrity, someone who will be fearless about the protection of every public dollar," he said.
"They also have to not be afraid of the high profile of the district, of the attention and scrutiny of many different players.