Final four

The field of candidates for Chico State University’s new dean of the College of Business has been narrowed to four. The News & Review has learned that they are: Joe Alber of Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa; Dalen Chaing of Cleveland State University in Ohio; Terri Swartz of Cal Poly San Luis Obispo; and Gordon Badovick of Marist College in Poughkeepsie, N.Y.

I called them all and by press time had heard back from Alber, Badovick and Swartz. Swartz said it wouldn’t be appropriate to talk about the job unless she got it, but the other two were game for a chat. Alber, who is dean at his business college, said, “I think [Chico State] is a great institution and a great location.” He counted among his strengths “a strong background in information technology.”

Badovick has a built-in Chico connection: He has family here and visits once a year. Badovick, who was up for a Sonoma State position recently that went to an internal candidate, wasn’t shy about saying that, if offered the Chico job, he’d take it. His field has always been “99.7 percent pure marketing,” and he worked for Bank of America in this state for several years, after getting his degrees at UCLA and the University of Oregon.

Both of the men (whose schools, incidentally, are private) made a point of praising the faculty and “innovative technology” at Chico State. And they said they’d have no problem filling the fund-raising, partner-with-private-industry role that’s becoming more and more crucial.

All four of the candidates came to Chico State to be interviewed in recent weeks.

Byron Jackson, Chico State’s vice provost for academic affairs, as well as Professor Gail Corbitt, who is chairing the search committee, were out of town and could not be reached for comment. (Jackson was in Cleveland, someone in his office said, but this person didn’t know if the trip had anything to do with Chaing’s being from there.) Stephen King, the dean of the College of Communication and Education, who has been serving as interim dean over the business school, said the search was in “mid-process” and the provost, Scott McNall, and President Manuel Esteban were reviewing the search committee’s tally of each candidate’s strengths. The top candidate could be invited back to Chico, or Chico State representatives could go visit him or her.

Hubb’s Stationery and Office Supply, the 45-year-old business that has called the Almond Orchard Shopping Center on Pillsbury Road home for the past five years, is packing up and moving to 956 Mangrove Ave., where Chico Filmworks used to be.

“Our lease was up, and we decided to be a little more visible,” said Marietta Dressler, who owns Hubb’s with her husband, Dan. The store does much of its business by selling office supplies directly to other businesses but also has a big selection of gifts and stationery. The Mangrove storefront is a tad smaller, but, Dressler said, “We will still have the same amount of inventory,” plus lots of new “goodies.”

Dressler said she hopes to be in the new location by the end of June, but packing is proving hectic: “At this point, the ceiling’s on the floor.”

"We’ve done nothing but grow," she added, cheerfully. "Chico has been very good to us."