News

Former interim police chief leading Pleasanton's Community of Character Collaborative

Eicher taking over for O'Lague, who accepted job in Oregon

Craig Eicher, a former member of the Pleasanton Police Department for more than three decades including six months as interim police chief, was recently named president of Pleasanton's Community of Character Collaborative.

According to a news release from the organization, Eicher, a longtime Pleasanton resident, has been on the Board of Directors for several years and has helped with things like manning the barbecue fundraising events for the organization, which looks to instill good values in the community.

Craig Eicher. (Contributed photo)

"We appreciate Craig for his willingness to continue serving the Pleasanton community after his retirement," according to the news release.

The nonprofit is a joint collaboration among the city government, the Pleasanton Unified School District and the Pleasanton Chamber of Commerce. According to its website, the organization's goals are to "help create a community of character built on values, goodwill and the traits of responsibility, compassion, self-discipline, honesty, respect and integrity."

Some of the ways the collaborative helps the community is by putting together scholarships; holding award ceremonies for character and service; and putting together a special olympics where Eicher has previously volunteered in handing out awards to the athletes.

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Eicher will be taking over after former president Kelly O'Lague announced her departure from the collaborative so that she could take the CEO position of the United Way of the Columbia-Willamette, an organization in Portland, Oregon.

O'Lague had a long presence in nonprofit leadership in the Tri-Valley, including guiding the Tri-Valley's Child Care Links as CEO through its merger with the San Leandro-based Family Service Counseling and Community Resource Center in July 2019. The nonprofit rebranded as Hively one month later.

Hively parted ways with O'Lague in February and while this new job is in Oregon, the collaborative's news release stated that O'Lague will continue to be a member of the Community of Character's Board of Directors, while maintaining a residence in Pleasanton.

It also stated that she took the job to be closer to her daughter and grandchild who live in Oregon.

"Kelly continues to be a wonderful and compassionate leader who is committed to helping children, seniors, and those in need," according to the news release. "We appreciate her many years of selfless service and personal sacrifice to the community all while promoting the values of the Community of Character."

Eicher was hired as a full-time police officer with the Pleasanton Police Department in 1991, rising through the ranks up to a promotion as captain about 10 years ago. He served as interim police chief for more than six months in 2019 and 2020, and officially retired from the force in January 2021.

He also founded the Pleasanton Police Officers Charitable Foundation, was president of the Pleasanton Police Officers Association for six years and was on the Board of Directors of Hope Hospice where he served as board president for six years.

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Christian Trujano
 
Christian Trujano, a Bay Area native and San Jose State alum, joined Embarcadero Media in May 2022 following his graduation. He is an award-winning student journalist who has covered stories in San Jose ranging from crime to higher education. Read more >>

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Former interim police chief leading Pleasanton's Community of Character Collaborative

Eicher taking over for O'Lague, who accepted job in Oregon

by / Pleasanton Weekly

Uploaded: Fri, Dec 9, 2022, 2:08 am

Craig Eicher, a former member of the Pleasanton Police Department for more than three decades including six months as interim police chief, was recently named president of Pleasanton's Community of Character Collaborative.

According to a news release from the organization, Eicher, a longtime Pleasanton resident, has been on the Board of Directors for several years and has helped with things like manning the barbecue fundraising events for the organization, which looks to instill good values in the community.

"We appreciate Craig for his willingness to continue serving the Pleasanton community after his retirement," according to the news release.

The nonprofit is a joint collaboration among the city government, the Pleasanton Unified School District and the Pleasanton Chamber of Commerce. According to its website, the organization's goals are to "help create a community of character built on values, goodwill and the traits of responsibility, compassion, self-discipline, honesty, respect and integrity."

Some of the ways the collaborative helps the community is by putting together scholarships; holding award ceremonies for character and service; and putting together a special olympics where Eicher has previously volunteered in handing out awards to the athletes.

Eicher will be taking over after former president Kelly O'Lague announced her departure from the collaborative so that she could take the CEO position of the United Way of the Columbia-Willamette, an organization in Portland, Oregon.

O'Lague had a long presence in nonprofit leadership in the Tri-Valley, including guiding the Tri-Valley's Child Care Links as CEO through its merger with the San Leandro-based Family Service Counseling and Community Resource Center in July 2019. The nonprofit rebranded as Hively one month later.

Hively parted ways with O'Lague in February and while this new job is in Oregon, the collaborative's news release stated that O'Lague will continue to be a member of the Community of Character's Board of Directors, while maintaining a residence in Pleasanton.

It also stated that she took the job to be closer to her daughter and grandchild who live in Oregon.

"Kelly continues to be a wonderful and compassionate leader who is committed to helping children, seniors, and those in need," according to the news release. "We appreciate her many years of selfless service and personal sacrifice to the community all while promoting the values of the Community of Character."

Eicher was hired as a full-time police officer with the Pleasanton Police Department in 1991, rising through the ranks up to a promotion as captain about 10 years ago. He served as interim police chief for more than six months in 2019 and 2020, and officially retired from the force in January 2021.

He also founded the Pleasanton Police Officers Charitable Foundation, was president of the Pleasanton Police Officers Association for six years and was on the Board of Directors of Hope Hospice where he served as board president for six years.

Comments

PtownRes
Registered user
Birdland
on Dec 10, 2022 at 1:06 pm
PtownRes, Birdland
Registered user
on Dec 10, 2022 at 1:06 pm

The Pleasanton Community of Character Board of Directors ideally would mirror our Pleasanton Community. There is no racial, ethnic or age diversity on the board. For example, O'Lague has been on the board for 15+ years and doesn't even live in Pleasanton now according to the article. Time for her to move along and let's bring in some new people that honor our current community. Not the relics of the past.


Ken mano
Registered user
Willow West
on Dec 14, 2022 at 2:18 pm
Ken mano, Willow West
Registered user
on Dec 14, 2022 at 2:18 pm

Hi PTown Res,
Interesting comment about no racial, ethnic or age diversity on the board, how familiar are you with the board?

I have been on the board, currently serving as VP, and I happen to be Asian and I think I qualify also as a senior, bringing age diversity also. We asked Kelly to stay on the board, at least temporarily for continuity purposes, btw, she happens to be of Mexican ancestry, and she still has a home in Pleasanton. Julian is Mexican / Filipino, and we also have an Indian on the board. There are at least 3 on the board who would qualify as seniors, including myself.

If you are feeling that the board doesn't care about seniors, the Community of Character board was instrumental in making the recent "Adopt a Senior for Christmas" project happen this year.
The Community of Character is the host for the Martin Luther King, Jr breakfast, which will occur in January, that helps honor and recognize diversity.
Take a look at the recipients of the Juanita Haugen Scholarship on our website, you'll see a lot of diversity among the recipients.

I didn't join the board to bring diversity and I don't think I was invited to be on the board for that reason, but to say that there is NO racial, ethnic or age diversity on the board is ABSOLUTLEY WRONG AND UNFAIR, because I represent all three.
If you were to attend a board meeting, it may seem that there is no diversity, because I have never been treated any differently than anyone else, on the Community of Character board, none of us are treated as if we are "different".
BTW, two new board members are women, both join me in the senior citizen category.
And I'm not afraid to post my name, it's Ken Mano.
I hope you're not afraid to admit you made a mistake.


ptown
Registered user
Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Dec 14, 2022 at 3:55 pm
ptown, Another Pleasanton neighborhood
Registered user
on Dec 14, 2022 at 3:55 pm

Ken, thank you very much for all you do for our community. You set a tremendous example for others.


PtownRes
Registered user
Birdland
on Dec 16, 2022 at 9:21 am
PtownRes, Birdland
Registered user
on Dec 16, 2022 at 9:21 am

Ken Mano - The 2 new board members would have represented current Pleasanton demographics given the existing board membership if they were under 40 and any ethnicity other than white. Representation is important in an organization, especially one that is supported by PUSD and the Pleasanton City Government.


Ken mano
Registered user
Willow West
on Dec 16, 2022 at 9:47 am
Ken mano, Willow West
Registered user
on Dec 16, 2022 at 9:47 am

Thanks for your comments.
I'm sure we can do better, especially if we are trying to match the demographics of the population exactly, but our focus is on getting the best board members possible, and also try to get people of color like me also. If you have suggestions, please let us know. But your initial post said, "There is no racial, ethnic or age diversity on the board", which is not true, and as a person of color, I kinda resented the comment.


PtownRes
Registered user
Birdland
on Dec 16, 2022 at 4:55 pm
PtownRes, Birdland
Registered user
on Dec 16, 2022 at 4:55 pm

Ken Mano - You might want to update your Board of Directors as it does not appear to reflect the current information. Web Link


Ken mano
Registered user
Willow West
on Dec 16, 2022 at 9:15 pm
Ken mano, Willow West
Registered user
on Dec 16, 2022 at 9:15 pm

Hi PtownRes
Now there's a valid criticism, the board of directors was not current, and that is my fault, so, I have now updated it. There are 14 board members, half represent either the city, PUSD or the Chamber, the major sponsors of the Community of Character, there are 7 women & 7 men. There are 4 that you could call people of color, it's the first time that I've counted, as we don't see ourselves as being different. There is no paid staff, these people are very busy, but take the time to serve on this board for the betterment of the community.

Now, regarding your original complaint, as a person of color myself (and I don't believe most on our board consider me any different), this board and many others could use more people of other ethnicities, but I also feel that we need to participate and earn our position, not just to meet a quota. If we are working hard to improve our community and contribute, we will be asked to be on more boards and earn our place. I would not want to be asked to be on a board, just so they could meet their quota.
If you like to talk outside of this public forum, email me and we can meet, it's on the website, you're pretty good at searching.


PtownRes
Registered user
Birdland
on Dec 17, 2022 at 1:46 pm
PtownRes, Birdland
Registered user
on Dec 17, 2022 at 1:46 pm

Ken Mano - That's really insulting to suggest that the only way to reach diversity on your board would be to lower your standards for a "quota." I am positive that there are many people in Pleasanton who are from a variety of backgrounds that would be eligible and meet the board's standards. And that these are very busy who give generously with their time. And have "earned" a position on your board if you just stopped to ask. This is a town of 85,000+ people and to insinuate that there are only a precious few that embody community of character ideals is just ridiculous. Did you use an application process to reach a variety of people or just pick ones that you know? Did you reach out to elementary school PTAs, various civic organizations etc to ask for nominations? If you stay within your circle of peers, you will not see the full potential of our community.


Ken mano
Registered user
Willow West
on Dec 18, 2022 at 9:16 am
Ken mano, Willow West
Registered user
on Dec 18, 2022 at 9:16 am

Please share the names of those you feel are qualified and would be willing to serve on the board and we will certainly talk to them. Unfortunately, I don't know each of the 85,000 members of the community, I wish I did, but as I walk around the farmers market, I am amazed at how few I really do know. No, we did not publicize for people to sit on the board. We do publicize other things, like nominations for the annual community character and service awards and scholarships, and we'd be willing to talk to you about the board if you're interested, but unfortunately, I don't know who PtownRes is. This is not a promise that we will accept anyone who submits an application, but we will consider them. I was asked several times myself, before I relented.


keeknlinda
Registered user
Vintage Hills
on Dec 18, 2022 at 10:30 am
keeknlinda, Vintage Hills
Registered user
on Dec 18, 2022 at 10:30 am

P town Res has no affiliation that we know of with Community of Character. His/her criticisms of the organization are a mere matter of his/her opinion. As one of two new board members I can say I knew casually and respected 3 of the members prior to being invited to join them. I knew of the others only from reading of their community involvemment over the years.
I was specifically asked to serve as liaison with City Serve because it was known I had talked with them and city representatives about the newly merged organization and was familiar with both unsheltered and senior resident concerns. No cronyism here. I just happen to be the rather outspoken little old lady who will go straight to the horse's mouth for answers. I'm more than twice the under 40 age P town Res thinks is necessary. I'll stack my knowledge and experience up against any pair of them.
Volunteer groups like this aren't about them or me, black or white, young or old. They're about contributing positivity to the community. They're color-blind, a-political and faith-neutral. They're about making the whole community better.
The real insult is for someone so unfamiliar with the collaborative to presume to say who should become members of the Board and how they should be selected.


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