A longtime executive at Pima Community College who was under investigation over claims that he engaged in "inappropriate behavior" with female employees has resigned, an email obtained by the Star this morning shows.

Johnson Bia, the president of PCC's Desert Vista campus at 5901 S. Calle Santa Cruz, also said he was retiring June 3. Bia had been with the college more the two decades.

"I have decided to step aside from the role of campus president. That will be taking effect immediately," Bia told about 50 college employees and students who gathered at the campus for his announcement today.

Bia said he didn't want PCC to be distracted by questions about his conduct when the school is fighting to keep its accreditation after being placed on probation last year.

His departure leaves the college with presidential vacancies at four of its six campuses. The school hopes to fill at least three of them by July 1.

Chancellor Lee Lambert sent an email in April to employees saying Bia had been temporarily reassigned from his campus duties to work at PCC headquarters. He was to help develop partnerships between PCC and business and industry.

At the time, Lambert said the timing of the change in Bia's duties and the probe was a coincidence.

The result of the internal investigation was not immediately available Thursday morning.