Manslaughter charge ousts ex-college boss from Maricopa


Maricopa is distancing itself from an ex-college administrator as he faces manslaughter charges stemming from a May hit-and-run.

One-time Central Arizona College administrator Chris Wodka, 58, pleaded not guilty to felony charges last month in Pinal County Superior Court following a May 13 collision that killed 25-year-old motorcyclist Hector Tualla.

It was after midnight when Wodka’s car hit Tualla near Villago Parkway and Pinal Avenue in Casa Grande, according to prosecutors.

Thrown off his motorcycle, Tualla later died at the scene, according to the Casa Grande Dispatch.

Wodka allegedly drove home where police later arrested him.

Wodka served as CAC’s vice president of business affairs and its chief financial officer. He also served on boards for the Maricopa Chamber of Commerce and Maricopa Economic Development Alliance.

CAC hired Wodka in 2010 but he’s no longer employed at the college, Associate Director of Public Relations Maggie Almquist said.

Maricopa Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Kelly Anderson could not confirm if the looming charges ended Wodka’s tenure.

“Our archived files are in off-site storage,” Anderson said.

Christian Price, the president and CEO of MEDA, distanced himself from Wodka. The relationship was superficial and ended in 2018, he said.

According to Price, Wodka was the Small Business Association representative for Maricopa and helped oversee Maricopa’s college campus.

“He was only present occasionally at MEDA and only when the (CAC) president could not attend in person,” Price said.

According to court documents, Wodka posted a $5,000 bail on May 25.

A pre-trial hearing regarding Wodka’s daunting courtroom battle is slated for Aug. 7.