But does he like hippies?

It was down to the wire, as the four finalists for the presidency at Humboldt State University headed to Arcata this week. Scott McNall, Chico State University’s provost and vice president for academic affairs, is one of them. He was to be there Feb. 27, according to a California State University press release. The candidates are being interviewed and taking part in a forum before the campus and general public, after which the media get to have a go at them.

The others are: Linda Baer, a senior vice chancellor at Minnesota State Colleges and Universities; Dennis Hefner, president of the State University of New York at Fredonia; and Rollin Richmond, provost at Iowa State University.

Clara Potes-Fellow of the CSU’s Public Affairs Office said that the Board of Trustees would make a recommendation to Chancellor Charles Reed, and an offer should be made by March 11.


An e-commerce network may be on the way to help small businesses in far-Northern California, thanks to a $100,000 state grant, the Chico State University Research Foundation’s share of $2 million Gov. Gray Davis announced the distribution of last week.

But since the grant amount didn’t reach the $150,000 the planners had hoped for, the university’s Center for Regional and Continuing Education is taking another look at the project to see how it can be pared down or retooled.

John Dahlgren, project director at the center, said the search is on for matching funds and additional grants. “We’ve had to revise the scope of what our deliverables are.” For example, instead of serving 12 Northstate counties, they may start with three. The intent is to boost business and employment in rural California.

The hope is that by 18 months from now, they can develop a network that will include online classes and a “Web portal” through which participants could gain access to business resources. Business owners and employees would get to use the network if they enrolled in certain extension courses.

Foundation founders

Times change and priorities change, and in the case of the Chico Unified School District Education Foundation, that means goodbye. Back in 1996, the CUSD Board of Trustees named supporting the foundation a top goal and dedicated $60,000 a year to pay for a director to raise funds that would support things like athletics, technology and music. A couple of years later, with less than $14,000 having been raised, the director was let go.

Fast-forward past union conflicts and budget cuts to 2002. Cliff Neill, the president of the foundation, said he expects the organization to be defunct by the end of this fiscal year. “Once we find a home for everything, we’re going to shut it down.”

He said the CUSD isn’t even kicking in for bookkeeping and accounting anymore, and it’s next to impossible to keep a foundation afloat without the support of its parent beneficiary.

The “new home” may come in the form of the North Valley Community Foundation. When supporters of the Pleasant Valley High School music program, which practices in embarrassingly shoddy digs, launched their fund-raising campaign, they hooked up with the NVCF.

Neill said he’s disappointed the community couldn’t rally support for the foundation. "All we really cared about was supporting the children."