SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. - Reflecting upon his lengthy career at Cuesta College, President and Superintendent Gil Stork said goodbye on Friday after more than half a century with the school.
"The greatest feeling is joy and satisfaction and pride in what this college has accomplished," Stork says at the press conference held for him.
But Stork has made numerous accomplishments himself - he started at Cuesta as a P.E. teacher and football coach in 1967.
He retired briefly in 2004 before returning to the college again and eventually making his way to president and superintendent in 2012.
Stork considers that return his second chance at life, stating: "These last eight years have been the most rewarding personal and professional experience of my 54 years in education."
One of the people who has been around since Stork's earlier days on campus is Board of Trustees President Barbara George.
"Your leadership style, your energy, your innovation - are part of us now forever," George says.
During Stork's 54 years with the school, Cuesta faced challenges like losing its accreditation.
Now Stork says they're 'rising from the ashes' as they continue to move forward, finding new ways to attract students like offering more online classes.
"It means when we go out and recruit new faculty, we need to put into our job announcement a requirement - a preferred requirement that they either have had online teaching or a willingness to learn and be trained on online classes," he explains.
As Cuesta College looks to a future with a new campus president, Stork looks back at his fifty plus years with pride.
"What a wonderful opportunity to have a career in a place that I love and having the variety of experiences that I've been able to enjoy," he says.
The college's Board of Trustees wants to involve the public in their hiring process.
They are hosting a meeting on September 6th to get opinions on what they want to see in the next president.