Chico Economics Graduate Careers - University Professor

Chris AnnalaChristopher Annala

Christopher Annala graduated from CSU Chico in 1995 and received his PhD in Economics from Washington State University in 2000.  He joined the School of Business at State University of New York at Geneseo in 2000 as an Assistant Professor of Economics.  Christopher was promoted to Associate Professor of Economics in 2006 and to Professor of Economics in 2011.  His teaching and research interests encompass a range of public finance and public policy topics. Christopher currently teaches a variety of policy classes including Public Finance, Environmental Economics, and Economics of Sports in addition to courses in Macroeconomics and Econometrics.  His research has been published in several internationally respected journals, including, Public Finance Review, Japanese Economic Review, and Sports Management Review.

“The undergraduate Economics education I received at CSU Chico prepared me to succeed in graduate work in Economics,” Christopher stated in a recent email.  “ While at CSU Chico I took several courses with Dr. Dave Gallo and he was my inspiration for pursuing a career in academia. To this day, I still refer to some of the lessons and stories I learned from Dr. Gallo when I'm teaching undergraduate economics courses.”

Frank BayhamJude Bayham

After Jude Bayham graduated with a B.A. in Economics from Chico State in 2006, he worked for one year as a researcher at Chico State’s Center for Economic Development.  In the Fall of 2007, he moved to Moscow, ID to begin a M.Sc. in Applied Economics at the University of Idaho.  His master’s thesis analyzed the impact of biofuel policy on the U.S. economy. He earned a Ph.D. in Economics with an emphasis on Natural Resource and Environmental Economics at Washington State University in 2013. His doctoral research studied the impact of the wild land urban interface on wildfire cost and size. Since Fall 2013, He has been a Postdoctoral Associate in the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies. His current research focuses on the impact of human behavior on infectious disease transmission and natural capital valuation. He also works on economic issues of wildfire management in the wild land urban interface, strategic environmental policy, and biofuel policy. 

“I began my tenure at Chico State pursuing a degree in Web Design and Management Information Systems, but then became interested in Economics” Jude stated in a recent email.  “My work as an Economist relies heavily on economic theory and mathematical modeling. The skills I learned in the Economics Department at Chico State have enabled me to pursue a career researching a diverse and interesting set of topics.”

Jacob BrimlowJacob Brimlow

Jacob N. Brimlow graduated with a BA in Economics from CSU, Chico in 1998, and is now an assistant professor of Agricultural Business in the CSU, Chico College of Agriculture. Dr. Brimlow has a Ph.D. in Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics from North Carolina State University, and teaches courses in Agricultural Economics, International Development in Agriculture, Agricultural Finance, and Price Analysis. Dr. Brimlow’s research focuses on improving the profitability and economic resiliency of agricultural producers in the CSU, Chico service area by identifying and developing market opportunities, particularly for small- and medium-sized producers. He has worked on several projects aimed at assessing and removing barriers to intermediated market local food sales, such as those between growers and restaurants, school districts, and hospitals. 

“Earning a BA in economics at CSU, Chico, gave me freedom to choose from many possible careers. In the end, I chose to pursue a PhD and a career in academics, but I also worked in acquisitions at a small capital company, and had other exciting opportunities.”

casey donohoCasey Donoho

Casey Donoho, who graduated in 1980 with a BA in economics, is a professor of marketing at Chico State.  Before and during his studies at Chico State, he worked in consumer electronics first as a sales person, then manager and owner for 11 years.  He completed his MBA at Chico in 1984 and his Ph.D. in economics in 1990 at the University of Oregon.  Casey has numerous publications in prestigious journals in marketing and ethics.

Casey became interested in ethics at the University of Oregon during his Ph.D. program where he taught the “Business and Society” class in which he began to think about ethical situations in business.  In a recent email Casey said, “Having run businesses for 11 years I was surprised about how unaware students were about ethical business dilemmas.”  Five years after completing his Ph.D. he began to research the personal selling ethics scale.  When Casey returned to Chico 20 years later, Professor Tim Heinze and he developed an updated version of the scale.  While on sabbatical in 2015 Casey and Tim have access to a global sample of schools in 5 countries that they are assessing on their ethics scale.

"As a former owner of retail stores and now as a college marketing professor, my economics training always plays a role in my business thinking. Whether it be environmental scanning, industrial and competitive analysis, pricing strategy, or consumer decision making, my Chico State economics degree provides me with a powerful structure for thinking about how the world works."

Keith S. EvansKeith S. Evans

Keith S. Evans received his B.A. in Economics with Honors in 2002 from Chico State where he competed on the Speech and Debate team. He earned his Ph.D. in Economics from Iowa State University in 2011. Keith was awarded a pre-doctoral research fellowship in Environmental and Resource Economics from the Center for Environmental Economics and Sustainability Policy at Arizona State University. Here, he researched the impact of remediation of Superfund sites in Maricopa County, AZ on the housing location decisions of households. After completing his doctorate in 2011, he joined the economics faculty at St. Lawrence University in Canton, New York. Since July of 2014, he has been an assistant professor in the School of Economics and School of Marine Sciences at the University of Maine in Orono.  

At Chico State, Keith had the opportunity to work with Professor David E. Gallo in research regarding population targets and recreational salmon fishing. In a recent email Keith stated that "My time at Chico State was important to my success in graduate school. The course work trained me to think conceptually about economic problems, rather than attempt memorization or brute force methods. This allowed me to address new research questions using the ideas introduced in other situations. The economics faculty are the department's greatest asset. During my time as a student they inspired me to enter academia and both prepared and encouraged me to attend graduate school."

Robert EylerRobert Eyler

Robert Eyler graduated with his BA in Economics in 1992. He is Professor of Economics and Director of the Center for Regional Economic Analysis at Sonoma State University. Robert earned a Ph.D. from the University of California, Davis in 1998. He is also the CEO of the Marin Economic Forum, a private-public partnership aimed at Marin County’s sustainable growth through business vitality, social equity and environmental balance.

“As an economics professor, economics is the core of what I do every day in terms of teaching, research, practical applications in economic development work, or consulting. In many cases, I am asked to provide guidance to local communities, news outlets, or private clients on the economic interpretation of events or specific microeconomic phenomena. I guide an annual economic forecast for the North Bay region in northern California, which includes Lake, Marin, Napa, Sonoma, Solano, and Mendocino counties. I am also running a public-private partnership in Marin County dedicated to economic development. That work includes various economic forecasts and analyses. My time at Chico State interested me in econometrics and forecasting and also teaching, all of which I apply daily.”

Robert is the author of two books and several academic articles concerning economic sanctions, the economics of the wine industry, and monetary economics. Dr. Eyler is often called up by the media for his expert input into the economic climate, acted as an expert witness in interstate trade litigation, and as a forensic economist. He also provides economic impact analyses for both private firms and public entities to help guide public policy at the local and state level and has been a visiting scholar at both the University of Bologna and Stanford University.

Jeff FelardoJeff Felardo

Jeff Felardo graduated with a BA in economics in 2005. He is an assistant professor at Eckerd College, where he focuses on Environmental Economics. After graduating from Chico State he spent a few months in Thailand on a USAID grant managing an English language library. He then obtained a Masters in Economics at the University of Wyoming where he started his research on development and the environment in Thailand. He recently obtained his PhD from the University of New Mexico where his dissertation focused on forest management in Thailand and the UN's REDD+ program. He graduated from UNM this year, and Eckerd is his first position since graduating. In a recent email he stated that “Eckerd is great, because of the small class sizes and the focus they have on student success. It reminds me of Chico State. I also helped develop a website which provides assistance and explanations for tricky economics concepts.”

Jeff is writing a book about economic concepts for kids. It's currently on kickstarter.

“My degree/experience from Chico State was crucial in my success because of the mentoring I received from Economics professors Michael Perelman, Barney Hope, James O'Toole, English Professor Thia Wolf, and the study abroad coordinator Tasha Dev. Michael and Thia really introduced to a world larger than Northern California, and they always motivated me to do more. Barney and O’Toole were the chairs of the economics department during my stay and helped me with studying abroad, graduating, and applying for graduate schools. Finally, Tasha Dev introduced me to international programs and helped me focus on the international aspects of my education as well as positioning me to receive that USAID grant which really started my graduate school career.”

James GerberJames Gerber

“I am Professor of Economics at San Diego State University, where I began as a lecturer in 1985 after graduate school at UC, Davis.  I finished my PhD in 1986.  Living near the border shaped my career in the direction of Mexico and Latin America.  San Diego-Tijuana is a single urban space (urban economics, regional economics) with a hard international border down the middle (international economics).  How can anyone resist that?  Well, apparently a lot of people can, but that is another story.  In 2002, I became the accidental director of the Center for Latin American Studies at SDSU.  At that time we were designated a National Resource Center for Latin American Studies by the Department of Education, and I spent 7 years improving my Spanish, learning about Mixtec and Zapotec culture and society, and hanging out with political scientists, anthropologists, comparative literature professors, public health specialists, and faculty from a wide array of other disciplines.  In the process, I co-authored a book (with Dr. Joan Anderson) on the economics of the US-Mexico border, (Fifty years of change on the US-Mexico border:  Growth, development, and quality of life, University of Texas Press, 2008) and developed a lasting interest in writing on US-Mexico economic relations, NAFTA, and the Mexican economy. 

In 1998 I published a textbook, International Economics, which is now in its 6th edition and is used in North America, Europe, South Asia, and China.  I am currently working with a Mexican colleague to produce a version that is in Spanish and looks at the international economy from a Latin American perspective. The experience of writing this book builds on my interests in many different regions of the world.  While I can pass for a Latin Americanist, the European Union's integration process, the crisis in the Eurozone, China’s historically unique growth trajectory, the successes of several East Asian economies, have all drawn my attention.  This work led me to become the Director of SDSU’s International Business Program, which I did for 3 years until, suddenly, it occurred to me that the administrative tasks that seemed to occupy my time were not the reason why I earned a PhD.  Since 2012, I’ve been back in the economics department.” 

Dennis HefnerDennis Hefner

After graduating in 1967, Dennis Hefner attended Washington State University where he earned his Master’s and Ph.D. degrees in Economics. His first position covered two years as an Economist/Social Science Research Analyst in Washington, D.C. for the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare studying various aspects of Medicare and Medicaid, which at that time had been in existence for only four years. He then returned to CSU, Chico, serving as a faculty member and department chair in the Economics Departments, plus three administrative positions: Dean of Undergraduate Studies, Dean of the College of Agriculture and Human Environmental Sciences, and Vice Provost for the university. During his Chico time, he published two dozen journal articles, received funding for more than 50 external grants, taught part-time at the University of California at San Francisco, and took a one-year leave of absense to be the Director of Research for PAID Prescriptions, Inc.

He then served four years as the Vice President for Academic Affairs at CSU, San Bernardino; had a six month stint as the Transition Team Leader for the soon-to-be opened CSU, Monterey Bay campus; and was appointed the founding Senior Vice Chancellor for the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities, which was formed by the merger of three different Minnesota higher education systems.

Beginning in 1996, he was named the President of the State University of New York at Fredonia--a position he held for 16 years. After retirement, he worked part-time for the SUNY system training new University Presidents and researching system-wide policy issues. Recently, he was asked to serve a 13 month stint as Interim President for SUNY Potsdam.

Jake HoskinsJake Hoskins

Jake Hoskins graduated with a B.A. in Economics from CSU, Chico in 2009. He went on to work for one year as an Assistant Store Manager at Walgreens before entering a Ph.D. program in Business Administration (emphasis in Marketing) at the University of Utah in fall of 2010. Jake completed his doctoral program in spring of 2015 and will begin his career as an Assistant Professor of Marketing at Millsaps College in Jackson, MS in August of 2015.

 “The undergraduate training in the Economics department at Chico State prepared me well for graduate school study. In particular, I found my theoretical grounding in economics to be crucial for my research endeavors, which began day 1 in my PhD program at the University of Utah.“

Jake stated in a recent email that “My undergraduate program in the Economics department at CSUC helped me identify my passion for data and analytics. Having an undergraduate degree in Economics enable me to pursue a variety of career options and serves as a very good building block to any career.”

Alex JamesAlex James

Alex James graduated from Chico State in 2006 and received his Ph.D. in economics from the University of Wyoming in 2012. He completed his post-doctoral research at the Center for the Analysis of Resource Rich Economies at the University of Oxford, and is currently an Assistant Professor of Economics at the University of Alaska, Anchorage. His current research largely focuses on the economic and social impacts of natural-resource production, including growth, public policy, and crime.

“The training I received as an economics major and mathematics minor at Chico State was invaluable to my success in graduate school,” Dr. James stated in a recent email.  “I felt very well prepared both in terms of my analytic ability and conceptual understanding of fundamental economic theories and concepts. In graduate school, I often relied on a core set of ideas and principles I learned as an economics major at Chico State.

“My undergraduate international and environmental economics courses spiked my interest in the discipline. In particular, having the chance to work on an applied travel cost-study with Professor Pete Tsournos motivated my decision to study environmental economics at the University of Wyoming. I am grateful for the training and guidance I received from the faculty in the Department of Economics at CSU Chico!”

edward a roualdesEdward A. Roualdes

Edward A. Roualdes graduated from Chico State in 2008 as a Smale recipient with a BA in Economics and a BS in Mathematics.  He completed his M.S. in Economics from Tufts University in 2010 and his Ph.D. in Statistics from the University of Kentucky in 2015.   In the same year Edward was awarded a position in the Department of Mathematics and Statistics at Chico State as an assistant professor.

Edward’s degree in economics allows him to bring real world problems into the classroom where he can show students how to apply the tools of statistics and mathematics.  “His work in statistics focuses on penalized regression methods fit with fully Bayesian hierarchical models.  This work bridges the gap between his academic interests, statistics and economics.  By brining economic and social science data sets into the classroom, his students learn statistics while working hands on with real world data.  Outside of the classroom, Edward previously worked as a statistical consultant for the University of Kentucky's College of Agriculture, Food and Environment.  Working on research projects with everyone from undergraduates to graduate students and from faculty to equine veterinarians, he developed an ability to communicate statistical concepts across a variety of disciplines.  His consulting experience will help budding research careers for Chico State's undergraduates and foster collaborative projects with fellow faculty members.  Apart from work, Edward enjoys hiking, mountain biking, and juggling.”  Source:

James SiodlaJames Siodla

James Siodla, who  graduated in December 2003, took a job as a real estate appraiser for the County of Tulare in 2004.  He worked there until 2008 when he entered graduate school at UC Irvine. He earned his PhD in economics in 2013 and he began his career as an Assistant Professor in the Economics Department at Colby College, a private liberal arts college in Maine. His research and teaching interests are in urban economics and U.S. economic history. 

"I credit my passion for economics, and my decision to pursue graduate school, to my time at Chico State," James said in a recent email.   "I decided to major in economics after a discussion with the chair of the department, Barney Hope, who convinced me that I should pursue an economics degree. I quickly found the discipline to be both relevant and intellectually satisfying, and I couldn't get enough! I am confident that, had it not been for my training and the wonderful faculty in economics, I would not be where I am today. I often draw on my experience at Chico State, where class sizes were small and student-faculty interaction was common. In many ways, I feel that my time at Chico State prepared me well for teaching at a liberal arts college. Overall, the Chico Experience played a large role in my life, one that comprised both intellectual and personal growth." 

Mark Thoma Mark Thoma

Mark Thoma graduated with his BA from Chico State in 1980 and finished his Ph.D. in economics from Washington State in 1985.  After finishing his doctorate, the Department of Economics of the University of California, San Diego hired him as a Visiting Professor from 1986–87.  In 1987 he became a member the Department of Economics of the University of OregonMark was head of the department from 1995 to 2000 and he became a full professor in 2010.
“Thoma is best known as a regular columnist for The Fiscal Times through his blog "Economist's View", which Paul Krugman called "the best place by far to keep up with the latest in economic discourse",[1] and as an analyst at CBS MoneyWatch. He is also a regular contributor to EconoMonitor.”  Source:
“CSU Chico, or Chico State” as it was known when I was there in the late 1970s, gave me all the tools I needed to be successful in graduate school and beyond,” Mark stated in a recent e-mail. “I am particularly grateful for the advice that several faculty members gave me about the classes I should take to get ready for graduate school, e.g. guidance on which math and statistics courses would be the most valuable. In one case, we even walked over to the math department to talk to faculty about which options would be best. Because of the great teaching and personal attention I was given, when I got to graduate school I was better prepared than.”

Constant TraConstant Tra

”Since graduating from Chico State summa cum laude in 2002, Constant Tra went to graduate school at the University of Maryland where he completed his PhD work in 2007.   He joined the Economics Department at the University of Nevada-Las Vegas as Assistant Professor upon completion of his doctorate.  He was tenured and promoted to Associate Professor in 2012.  Constant also has a concurrent appointment as Associate Director of the Center for Business and Economics Research.

In a recent email, Constant stated, “I would say that economics at Chico State gave me a great foundation which has allowed me succeed in graduate school and in my current job as an economics faculty. The enthusiasm of the professors made me want to learn more about economics. I will forever be grateful to Chico state Economics!”