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EOU governing board members confirmed

EOU Board Members
EOU Board of Trustee nominees gathered at the Capitol from left are George Mendoza, Holly Kerfoot, Ray Brown, Richard Chaves, Dixie Lund, Jer Pratton and Tom Insko. Nominees attending the hearing in Salem by phone are Pat Todd and Elsie Praeger-Goller.

EOU governing board members confirmed

News contact: Tim Seydel | Vice President for University Advancement
541-962-3740 | tseydel@eou.edu 

September 16, 2014

LA GRANDE, Ore. (EOU) – The Oregon Senate Committee on Rules and Executive Appointments voted Monday to approve nine individuals nominated by Governor Kitzhaber as members of Eastern Oregon University’s first Board of Trustees.

Final confirmation by the state Senate is expected Wednesday. The new board will be responsible for mapping a future course for the university beginning July 2015.

“Having a board solely focused on EOU represents a tremendous opportunity for the university,” said Jay Kenton, interim president. “The people nominated by the Governor all have very strong ties to EOU and will be vocal advocates for the university and the region.”

Senate Bill 270, which passed last year, is the impetus behind EOU’s shift in governance. All seven public universities in Oregon are subsequently implementing their own boards in preparation for the disassembly of the State Board of Higher Education June 30, 2015.

“I am excited about getting the opportunity to be a member of the EOU governance board,” said Richard Chaves of Baker City, one of the initial nine nominees.

“As an alumnus of EOU and current chair of the EOU Foundation Board Finance Committee, this furthers my ongoing commitment to providing excellence in education for eastern Oregon youth and Oregonians around the state,” Chaves added.

The nine board nominees are:

Ray Brown of Summerville – Assistant professor of education and secondary education program coordinator at EOU; faculty representative.

Richard Chaves of Baker City – Founder and president of Chaves Consulting, Inc. (CCI) and 1973 EOU graduate.

Elsie Praeger-Goller of Portland – Junior EOU transfer student majoring in elementary education with an ESOL endorsement, and Oregon Student Association member; student representative.

Tom Insko of La Grande – Boise Cascade region manager, Oregon Board of Forestry member, EOU Foundation president 1994 EOU graduate.

Holly Kerfoot of Fruitland – Business owner, EOU President’s Circle and Mountaineer Athletic Association member, past-president of EOU’s Alumni Association, former EOU Foundation board member and 1985 EOU graduate.  

Dixie Lund of La Grande – Retired two-time interim EOU president and 1973 EOU graduate.

George Mendoza of Richland – Assistant superintendent/director of special education for Morrow County School District and 1997 EOU graduate.

Jer Pratton of Hermiston – Retired Hermiston School District superintendent.

Patricia Todd of Baker City – Print services technician/classified staff member at EOU and vice president of SEIU 503 Local #081; staff representative.

Once confirmed, these individuals will serve a four-year term as trustees. Kenton will also sit on the board as EOU’s interim president.