Report of the Chair

Remarks by Lou Monville
Chair, CSU Board of Trustees
Report to the Board of Trustees
November 13, 2014

To begin, I want to again thank all those who supported and served on the CSU Trustee Workgroup on Category II Student Success Fees. Our campuses strike an important balance between maintaining affordability… and ensuring that students receive are prepared for success in their careers and lives.
The workgroup has produced a strong analysis of the opportunities and challenges facing campuses. This work was made possible by engaging the campus community and public. Appreciation is particularly due to the campus communities of Northridge, Sonoma and Los Angeles. The three public forums on these campuses provided input that was thoughtful and incredibly valuable to the Board of Trustees.

As we continue discussions of affordability, access, opportunity and success, it is important to remember that our campuses are engines of social mobility for the people of California. Last month, CollegeNet−a higher education technology company−and Payscale−which tracks salary data – generated a “social mobility index.” They looked at factors including tuition, economic background of students, graduation rates, early career salaries and endowments.

Out of the hundreds of universities ranked, three California State University campuses were noted in the top-ten: Pomona, Northridge and Stanislaus.
In fact, all CSU campuses included in this report achieved rankings within the top 12 percent of universities.

As we celebrate the Class of 3 Million California State University Alumni, it is important to pause and consider the social momentum that these alumni produce. From the economy to government – and from the humanities to the sciences – California State University alumni are blazing the path to this state’s future. Of course, many of those alumni are here in this room. I encourage you all to go create your alumni profile at

And you can explore those profiles already posted. Also, as Sonya shared with us yesterday after you create your profile, go on and thank that special faculty or staff member. I want to thank Professors at San Bernardino, Risa Dickson and Linda Norman.

Of course, the successes of our alumni and students are closely tied to the excellence of California State University faculty.
Thirteen members of the California State University’s remarkable faculty have been named 2014-15 Fulbright Scholars.

  • Professors Kimberly Trimble, Nancy Erbe and Kate Fawver of Cal State Dominguez Hills
  • Associate Professor Zair Ibragimov of Cal State Fullerton
  • Professor Tasha Howe of Humboldt State
  • Professor David Pitt of Cal State L.A.
  • Associate Professor Kathleen Young of Cal State Northridge
  • Professors John Self and Fiorello Abenes of Cal Poly Pomona
  • Professor Wendy Smith of Cal State San Bernardino
  • Professor Hafez Modirzadeh of San Francisco State
  • Professor Andrew Wood of San José State
  • And Professor Barry Jones of Cal Poly San Luis Obispo

The prestigious award will send these outstanding scholars to academic institutions across the globe for transformational teaching and research experiences – experiences that will be brought back to enrich their home campuses. The concentration of Fulbright scholars is due to the academic quality and leadership of our faculty – individually and as a whole.

CSU continues to “Green” our campuses. I want to recognize President Zingg ad the team at Chico for the great article in Green Building and Design Magazine on the new student services center.

Speaking of our extraordinary faculty and staff – we heard earlier about the successful agreements with our bargaining units, ratified by the Collective Bargaining Committee. I would like to again acknowledge the tremendous collaborative effort of campus and system representatives, as well as the representatives of our various bargaining units.

Congratulations to President Armstrong and the Cal Poly SLO team for securing a $20 million gift from Peter and Mary Beth Oppenheimer, the largest gift in university history. I also want to thank the Oppenheimers and note that Peter is an alum, who continues to give back.

I would also like to acknowledge two leaders who will be retiring soon. We will have a chance later to hear from the chancellor on their service and recognize them both in the plenary session.

But, I would like to extend my personal thanks to Executive Vice Chancellor Ephraim P. Smith and Cal Poly Pomona President Michael Ortiz. You have both provided a tremendous service to the California State University. And you have diligently informed and supported the efforts of the Board of Trustees.

I also want to give a belated thanks to all of our veterans in the CSU--as we celebrated Veterans’ Day this week. I am pleased to note the CSU’s commitment to our returning veterans has never been stronger. This week Times Magazine recognized the top 100 4-year universities for veterans in the nation. The CSU has four campuses on the list including San Bernardino, San Marcos, San Diego and Sacramento. Congratulations for your recognition and your great service to our vets

Speaking of the efforts of the board, I’m pleased to share with my colleagues a report entitled Consequential Boards: Adding Value Where It Matters Most. This report was completed by the National Commission on College and University Board Governance with the support of the Association of Governing Boards. I particularly want to acknowledge Trustee Roberta Achtenberg, who served on the commission that prepared this important work. We should all be able to draw lessons from this report to help us better serve CSU students.

I plan to come to you in January with a proposal regarding how we can conduct this process in a way that supports Tim in his efforts to lead the system effectively, and that ensures broad input from trustees into the leadership of the system. That concludes the Chair’s Report. And now for the Chancellor’s Report.

That concludes the Chair’s Report.

And now for the Chancellor’s Report.