Complaint dismissed against CCSD board member

Board member Ruthda Thomas says Superintendent Don Levinski's complaint was "politics"

Noel Lyn Smith
From left, Central Consolidated School District Secretary Christina J. Aspaas and board member Ruthda Thomas prepare for a hearing for Superintendent Don Levinski on Nov. 10 in the CCSD board room in Shiprock.

FARMINGTON — A district court judge has dismissed a complaint filed by Central Consolidated School District Superintendent Don Levinski against a member of the district’s Board of Education.

Judge Daylene Marsh granted an order last week to dismiss the complaint against board member Ruthda Thomas.

The order, issued Wednesday, was made after Attorney Eleanor K. Bratton, who is representing Levinski, filed a motion to dismiss the Oct. 13 complaint against Thomas.

Bratton filed the motion on Tuesday. It requested the court dismiss the matter with prejudice, stating Thomas' membership on the board "no longer presents a risk of immediate, irreparable harm" to Levinski.

The Oct. 13 complaint filed in the 11th Judicial District Court alleged Thomas, who represents District 5 on the board, did not live in Sanostee but in Kirtland, which is in District 1.

Thomas said in a telephone interview today that Levinski knows she does not live in Kirtland and called his action "politics."

"I live here in Sanostee. …They all know that I live here," she said.

Bratton could not be reached for comment today.

Central Consolidated School District Superintendent Don Levinski waits for his hearing to start on Oct. 25 in Shiprock.

Prior to the court's decision last week, Thomas had filed a motion to dismiss based on the argument that Levinski’s actions were an attempt to suspend the discharge hearing the board started in October and to further leverage the board for a monetary settlement.

The motion also stated Thomas' place of residence was being called into question because she voted in favor of ending Levinski's employment.

Levinski has been on paid administrative leave since Aug. 18, 2015, after three board members, including Thomas, approved the action and appointed Colleen Bowman as interim superintendent.

Levinski has also filed separate complaints in district court against the board and its president, Randy Manning.

No further action had been taken on those cases as of today, according to court records.

Noel Lyn Smith covers the Navajo Nation for The Daily Times. She can be reached at 505-564-4636.