1999 - 6th Distinguished Alumni

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Sandy Beck

College of Agriculture
BS Life Science, Class of 1960

Sanford "Sandy" Beck is the director of vocational training for Job Corp. in seven states for the Reno-based company Adams & Associates. Prior to that, he served as the executive director and executive secretary for the California State Council on Vocational Education, where he was the liaison with inter-governmental agencies and responsible for integration of vocational education and employment/training planning, research planning, and evaluation in conjunction with and directed by the council and its officers. Beck graduated in 1960 with a B.S. in life science. He received his general secondary and special secondary agriculture credentials as well as a secondary administrative credential from UC, Davis. He earned a master's in vocational education administration from CSU, Sacramento. Following his graduation from CSU, Chico, Beck spent many years as a vocational agriculture instructor, councilor, and administrator and was principal of Willows High School from 1969-1971. He has served as regional coordinator and regional supervisor for the State Department of Education and was the general manager of the Kiwifruit Commodity Division of Sun World International.  While at CSU, Chico, Beck was president of Associated Students in 1958 and was responsible for initiating a mandatory student fee  which gave leverage for the bonds that built Bell Memorial Union. One of his greatest honors while on campus was when Glenn Kendall asked him to be the student representative at the dedication of Kendall Hall.

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Donald W. Upson

College of Behavioral and Social Sciences
BA Economics, Class of 1977
BA International Relations, Class of 1977

Donald W. Upson serves as the Commonwealth of Virginia's first Secretary of Technology. Appointed by Governor Jim Gilmore on May 21, 1998, Upson brings more than two decades of government, corporate, and high technology experience to the Commonwealth of Virginia. His position is the country's first cabinet-level post that combines operational authority over the state's technology infrastructure with policy responsibility for creating a "best practice" technology business environment. Upson graduated from CSU, Chico in 1977 with degrees in economics and international relations. Following graduation, Upson held the positions of legislative assistant and principal assistant to Congressman Fran Horton (R-NY). He later became the Republican staff director of the House Government Operations Committee, where he directed a staff of seventeen and played a major role in procurement reform initiatives, the Paperwork Reduction Act, the Chief Financial Officer's Act, the Inspector General Act, and a host of trade-related legislation. In 1977, Upson was an intern for the United States Congress. Upson joined Litton PRC in 1992, where he was vice president of strategic communication. In that position, he acted as the company's principal contact with Capitol Hill and key executive branch officials on major program and policy interests of the company. He was also named for five years to Federal Computer Week's Federal 100, which honors the top 100 government and industry leaders in the federal information technology market, and served as judge for this prestigious awards ceremony for two years.

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Kim Foss-Erickson

College of Business
BS Business Administration, Class of 1960

Kim Foss-Erickson is the founder and president/CEO of E & A Investment Advisory, Inc., a "fee only" registered investment firm. Foss-Erickson founded the firm in 1989, and it was recently awarded the DALBAR Financial Professional Seal and rated by DALBAR as one of the "Top 10% Most Outstanding 'Fee-Only' Investment Advisory Firms in the United States." Foss-Erickson earned a B.A. in business in 1984 from CSU, Chico and received her certified financial planner professional designation in 1991. At the time of induction, Foss-Erickson was pursuing her chartered financial analyst designation. Following her graduation, Foss-Erickson joined Merrill Lynch & Co, where she was a lead member of the team to open the San Ramon, CA office of the firm in 1985. During her tenure at Merrill Lynch & Co., she was an account broker, mutual fund coordinator, and insurance analyst. She has more than sixteen years of experience in the financial service business, managing $35 million of high net worth individual and pension plans. During her time in Chico, Foss-Erickson was a member of Phi Chi Theta Professional Business Fraternity for Women. In her professional life she has served on numerous committees and boards in a leadership capacity, including the Board of Directors of the CSU, Chico Alumni Association, where she helped to establish the alumni chapter in San Diego. She has also given her time and talent to Soroptimist International, Rotary International, the International Association of Financial Planners, the Temecula Valley and Roseville Chambers of Commerce, and the Institute of Certified Financial Planners.

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Jerry McGuire

College of Communication & Education
BA Elementary Education, Class of 1964
MA Education Administration/Supervision,
Class of 1973

Jerry McGuire has been the superintendent of Butte County Schools since 1991. In June of 1998, McGuire was elected to serve a third four-year term. Prior to serving as superintendent, McGuire was principal at three schools within the Chico Unified School District. McGuire earned a B.A. in elementary education in 1964 from CSU, Chico and received his M.A. in education administration/supervision in 1973. He also earned a credential in life-administrative services (elementary and general). McGuire began his career as a classroom teacher in the Chico Unified School District. He went on to become a program evaluation consultant for the California Department of Education, a summer session instructor for CSU, Chico, the principal of the Migrant Education Summer School through the Butte County Office of Education, the director of Outdoor Education for Chico Unified School District, and principal at John McManus, Chapman, and Oakdale Elementary Schools. During his time at CSU, Chico, McGuire engaged in many volunteer activities involving children recreation, and outdoor programs. Reading to, storytelling to, and singing with children has always been an interest of his. McGuire reads to children at local libraries, bookstores, and in classrooms throughout the county. He is past president of Butte/Glenn United Way and is a member of many local organizations. His professional affiliations include the Northeastern Region of the California County Superintendents Educational Services Association, the Association of California School Administrators Associations, where he served as president.

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Bill Wattenburg

College of Engineering, Computer Science, and Construction Management
BS Electrical Engineering and Mathematics,
Class of 1958

Dr. Willard "Bill" Wattenburg is an inventor, consultant, researcher, best-selling author, and talk show host who is heard on KGO Newstalk Radio Saturday and Sunday nights. Wattenburg's show focuses on issues that affect everyone, such as determining practical sources of alternative energy or using technology for the improvement of safety. He delights in finding and sharing simple solutions to complex problems that plague the experts and confuse the public. Wattenburg earned his B.S. in electrical engineering and mathematics from CSU, Chico in 1958 and later received his M.S. in electrical engineering and his Ph.D. in electrical engineering and physics from the University of California in Berkeley. He spent five years on the faculty at UC, Berkeley and has founded three successful high-tech companies in the Bay Area. Wattenburg's media career began in 1972 when he started hosting his late night Newstalk program on KGO. His approach to explaining technical wonders to the layperson is based on his belief that people are a lot smarter than they give themselves credit for. He has received much media attention for his inventions, such as a robot mine sweeper that may be used to protect U.S. troops. In March 1995, Wattenburg's design for a temporary bridge kit was implemented successfully to restore a bridge on Interstate 5 in Fresno County that had washed away during torrential rains. Dr. Watten burg is well known to many senior members of Congress as a respected scientist and well-informed individual on the frontiers of U.S. Technology in military, space, and medicine.

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Marilyn Warrens

College of Humanities & Fine Arts
BA Fine Arts, Class of 1975

Marilyn Warrens is a local businesswoman, community activist, and longtime patron of the arts in Chico and at CSU, Chico. Well known for her tireless efforts on behalf of the arts, Warrens endowed the Harlen Adams Scholarship in 1974, served as chair of the Laxson Auditorium renovation campaign, and led the 30th Anniversary Committee for Court Theater in 1996. In 1998 she established the Marilyn Warrens Musical Theater Scholarship and provided underwriting for three operettas over a six-year period. A native Texan, Warrens moved with her husband, Ed, to California in 1955, eventually settling in Chico. She graduated with a degree in fine arts from CSU, Chico in 1975. Warrens has participated in many local committees and functions and was honored with the Chico Rotary Club’s coveted Community Service Award in 1978. In 1969, for the 100th anniversary of the Bidwell Mansion, she organized Fiesta Rancho Chico as well as Las Senoras, a group that acts as official hostesses of Chico, raising money for the upkeep of Bidwell Mansion. She also chaired the Refurbishing of Laxon Auditorium Committee. She was president of the California Medical Association Alliance (formerly Auxiliary) and the Bicentennial Committee, which started the tradition of fireworks on the 4th of July in 1976. Warrens originated the Decorator’s Dream House for the Butte Glenn Medical Alliance in 1977 and has chaired two additional Dream Houses.

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Judy Martin-Holland

College of Natural Sciences
BS Nursing, Class of 1977

She is President of the American Nurses Association for the State of California. Martin-Holland earned her B.S. in Nursing from CSU, Chico in 1977. She went on to earn a masters of public administration from CSU, Hayward in 1981, and a masters of science in nursing with a specialty in cardiopulmonary from University of California, San Francisco in 1985 and her post-masters family nurse practitioner certificate from University of California, San Francisco in 1995. She also devotes time to such groups as the Bay Area Black Health Consortium, the National Black Nurses Association, and Sigma Theta Tau International.

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