C of I Newsletter

2008. 05. 29.

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Student seriously injured in fall Wednesday night

A C of I freshman was seriously injured Wednesday night when he fell from a balcony in The Village student apartments.

Cole Richelieu is in the intensive care unit at Saint Alphonsus Regional Medical Center in Boise. His family is with him and extends their thanks to the students, coaches and others who have visited Cole. Visitors will continue to be welcomed. Please be aware the hospital does not allow live plants, including cut flowers, in the intensive care unit.

Cards may be sent to: Cole Richelieu, c/o Saint Alphonsus Regional Medical Center, 1055 N. Curtis Road, Boise, 83706.

Students, faculty, staff and the rest of The C of I community’s thoughts and best wishes are with Cole and his family.

2008 Baccalaureate and Commencement this weekend

The end of the academic year is fast approaching. Baccalaureate will be held Friday, May 30 at 8 p.m. in Jewett Auditorium and Commencement is Saturday, May 31 at 10 a.m., and is followed by lunch.

Anyone planning to attend Baccalaureate, Commencement or the lunch must RSVP so the College has an accurate headcount.

The keynote address at Commencement will be given by Idaho Supreme Court Justice Warren E. Jones (‘65), who will also receive an honorary degree. The seniors chose Coyote editor Brad Baughman as senior speaker. Trustee Dr. Dick Roberge will be recognized with an honorary degree.

The Baccalaureate speaker is Tri Robinson (‘70), founding pastor of Vineyard Christian Fellowship of Boise, who will receive a President’s Medallion.

Ann Hayman (‘71) and Professor Emeritus Boyd Henry will also receive President’s Medallions.

The College of Idaho Half-Century Society Life Achievement Awards will be presented to R.C. Owens, Donald L. Greer, and Roberta “Sandy” Addis Tavares, all members of the Class of 1958.

Hoover, LiCalzi, Bennion and Smith shorn for The C of I

President Bob Hoover received his summer haircut a few days early after the Class of 2008 issued him a challenge at Wednesday’s Senior Banquet – if they could raise another $100 on the spot, Hoover would agree to shave his head. Hoover accepted and said he’d donate another $100 if political economy professor Jasper LiCalzi would shave the mustache he’s had since the 1970s. In all, the senior class raised another $230 at banquet.

Dean of Students Paul Bennion had already agreed to shave his head and Vice President of Academic Affairs Mark Smith had agreed to shave his mustache if the seniors met their goal of 80 percent participation in the Senior Legacy campaign, so both received their barbering Wednesday as well.

Congratulations to the Class of 2008 for exceeding its goals for participation and amount raised, and for having fun along the way!

  • Number of donors: 108
  • Total raised: $2,169 (Goal: $1,280)
  • Total raised including matching gifts: $3,652
  • Percentage of giving: 81.2 percent

Boone Fund: The C of I still needs more alumni donors to help meet this year’s goal of 25 percent alumni giving.

  • Number of donors: 1,624
  • Number still needed: 68
  • Percentage of giving: 24.01 percent

Make your pledge to the Boone Fund by June 30. The Boone Fund is crucial to the College because it supports the College’s yearly operating and scholarship needs.

Last year, the College’s alumni giving rate reached an all-time high of nearly 24.5 percent. Help us make 25 percent this year. Your participation matters because every gift helps The C of I reach its goal.

C of I name change bringing success to Invest in Excellence fundraising campaign

Alumni from The College of Idaho and Albertson College of Idaho are showing their support for the College’s name change by donating to the Invest in Excellence comprehensive fundraising campaign.

President Bob Hoover will make three announcements related to the 10-year, $175 million fundraising campaign at a news conference Friday, May 30 at 2 p.m. on the steps of Sterry Hall facing the clocktower.

Hoover will announce how much money has been raised, the names of the honorary co-chairs, and an initiative to honor two professors.

Invest in Excellence has raised $90 million in donations, grants and estates since it was announced in October. This includes the lead gift of $72 million from the J.A. and Kathryn Albertson Foundation.

Hoover attributes much of the success of the campaign to the College’s return to its original name of The College of Idaho in October.

“I’m very pleased to be able to announce the early success of the Invest in Excellence campaign,” Hoover said. “We have heard from many alumni who have not given to the College in several years because they didn’t feel like it was the same school they knew and loved. Going back to The C of I has helped us connect with all of our alumni.”

In addition to providing an update about the money raised so far, Hoover will announce that Gov. C.L. “Butch” Otter (‘67) and former C of I President Bob Hendren (‘86) have agreed to be honorary campaign co-chairs.

He will also announce an initiative to create an endowed department chairmanship for Professor Howard Berger and an endowed scholarship for Professor Terry Mazurak. Berger and Mazurak recently celebrated their 25th anniversaries of teaching at the College.

At the time the name change was announced in October, Hoover kicked off the Invest in Excellence fundraising campaign. Invest in Excellence focuses on three main areas, and includes both short- and long-term goals:

  • Increasing the College’s endowment to provide more four-year scholarships, academic chairs and professorships, faculty professional development and student activities
  • Increasing the College’s unrestricted fund
  • Remodeling, updating and building new facilities

“This campaign provides something for everyone on campus,” Hoover said.

The C of I joins Idaho in remembering J.R. Simplot

The College of Idaho President Bob Hoover joins the rest of the state in honoring and remembering J.R. Simplot, who died Sunday, May 25 at the age of 99. Simplot served on the College’s Board of Trustees for more than five decades, spoke at commencement 51 times, and kept the College financially stable during hard times.

“J.R. Simplot was a significant force on our campus for several generations of students,” Hoover said. “Without his business acumen, his incredible generosity and his love of the College, we would not have the rich, 117-year heritage that we do today.”

Hoover recalled stories about trustee meetings where Simplot would pull out his checkbook to cover a debt for the College, “and he would challenge the other trustees to do the same.”

Idaho businessman Walt Minnick, who served on the College’s Board of Trustees with Simplot, posted the following to his campaign website (Minnick is running for the U.S. House of Representatives in Idaho’s 1st Congressional District):  

“I served a dozen years on the board of The College of Idaho, and have fond memories of all that J.R. Simplot did to help the school get through some tough times. The school once threw a party for J.R. and for Joe Albertson, and the two of them spent the whole noon hour poking fun at each other and making jokes about who had really saved the school. The reality is that both of them saved that school.”

Simplot has been recognized in many ways by the College, including having two buildings named for him and receiving an honorary degree in 1961, but he was more than just a generous benefactor to the College.

He enjoyed interacting with the students and spoke at 51 commencements. He always included a signature line that was his advice to graduates, “Get a piece of land and hold onto it.”

Several of Simplot’s children and grandchildren graduated from the College. His daughter Gay graduated in 1968 and is a current member of the College’s Board of Trustees. His son Don is a 1958 graduate. Grandchildren Michael Simplot, Ted Simplot, Anne Simplot, and Laurie Careen Braun are also alumni. 

Simplot’s wife Esther received an honorary degree in 2005, and Simplot was named an emeritus trustee in the 1990s, after serving on the board continuously since the 1940s.

The College of Idaho has two buildings named for Simplot – Simplot Residence Hall, which is currently being remodeled, and Simplot Dining Hall. The residence hall will be partially reopened this fall, and will be rededicated in January.

C of I Trustee Louie Attebery was Simplot’s biographer and wrote “J.R. Simplot, A Billion the Hard Way.”  He said Simplot was a billionaire who knew hard, physical labor.

“He grew up on a farm. He got up early, could hitch a team and do the hard work of farming,” Attebery said. He noted that Simplot was dyslexic and struggled in school. “He dropped out, calling himself ‘dumb,’ and went to work sorting potatoes.”

Attebery called Simplot a genius. “He had an uncommon vision, was a one-world figure, an internationalist who believed that the world’s problems and the solutions were interconnected. And he was an uncommon supporter of The College of Idaho.”

Women’s Softball World Series results

The Lady Yotes softball team finished 14th at the 2008 NAIA Women’s World Series,  including a fourth-place finish in their five-team pool, which was not enough to advance to the national quarterfinals. The Coyotes finish the season with a 28-20 record.

 “I learned that softball in the northwest is not much different than what we saw in Alabama,” said head coach Al Mendiola. “We did not play the type of defense we are capable of and it showed in the scores – too many errors and unearned runs. You cannot give teams of this capability extra outs – they will beat you. We now know what it takes to compete at this level – it was a great learning experience and I know that the team is hungry to return next year.”

The World Series marked the final games in the careers of a pair of C of I seniors, Katie Zillner and Kelsi Murdock.  Murdock finished the season starting 44 of the 48 games and is fifth on the single-season list for sacrifice hits (10) and fifth on the career sacrifice hits list (11). 

For Zillner, it was a culmination of an amazing career which finds her name dominating the record books.  She set a single-game record with 16 strikeouts vs. Northwest Christian, and had 11 single-season top-ten performances – No. 1 in ERA (1.53) and strikeouts (238); No. 2 in hits (51) at bats (149), wins (17), complete games (21), starts (26), and innings pitched (159.2); No. 3 in appearances (28), No. 9 in runs scored (26), and No. 10 in batting average (.342). 

Zillner also has a staggering 24 marks in the career top ten, including school records for batting average (.349), hits (146), RBI (86), doubles (31), ERA (2.31), wins (42), appearances (80), innings pitched (451), starts (69), complete games (52), walks (162), strikeouts (577), shutouts (14), and no-hitters (3).  She is No. 2 in runs scored (86), walks-batting (45); No. 3 in saves (2); No. 4 in home runs (8), No. 5 in triples (2) and at bats (418), No. 6 in games played (140), No. 8 in hit by pitches (8), and No. 9 in games started (139).

The Lady Yotes will have the majority of their team returning for the 2009 season, as seven starters and key role players will be back.  Bookend infielders Haley Butcher and Dani Villyard will return, fresh off All-CCC and All-NAIA Region I years, while slugger Stacy Smith returns for her senior year.  Outfielders Nicole Antonoplos and Stephanie Stover return, along with catcher Kalie Kurdy and shortstop Donnae Carrell.  Key reserves Sammy Dodge and Caylin LePire are back, along with pitchers Brooke Judy and Chelsey Nokleby.

Mexican exchange student assists with museum project

Daniela E. Ramírez spent more than five weeks from late March through early May doing volunteer work in the Orma J. Smith Museum of Natural History. Her work was supported, in part, by a grant received by the museum from the Schlinger Foundation.

Ramírez is from Tecate, Baja California, and she has just completed her undergraduate program at UABC in Ensenada.  Her main task was the curation of nearly 200 samples of terrestrial invertebrates from the Baja California, Mexico, desert. 

Museum staff and volunteers have collected these specimens over the years.  She processed samples and specimens and has them ready for identification by various specialists. This is all part of a larger “Arthropods of Baja California” project being done in collaboration with the museum’s sister institution at CICESE (Museo de Artropódos de Baja California, Departamento de Biología de la Conservación, Centro de Investigación Científica y de Educación Superior de Ensenada). 

Ramírez also co-authored a poster on The C of I Mexico field biology expeditions and recent collaborations with CICESE with museum director William H. Clark, Dave Ward, and Paul Blom. She gave the evening presentation at the April Idaho Entomology Group monthly meeting.  

“She was extremely helpful and accomplished a lot,” said Clark. “She really cares for the museum.”

Life after The C of I: Where are we now?

Amanda Hendrix (‘05) and Jordan Komoto (‘05) will marry in June. Amanda received her master’s degree in curriculum and instruction from University of Nevada, Las Vegas in 2007, and is an elementary school teacher in the Clark County School District (Las Vegas). She will be starting a Ph.D. program in history at University of Michigan-Ann Arbor in September. Jordan is the Southern Nevada training and recruiting consultant for Wells Fargo Financial and completed a master’s degree in higher education administration at University of Nevada, Las Vegas earlier this month.

Gene Ralston (‘67) and his wife Sandy Ralston (‘69) are the subject of a feature in the June issue of Harper’s magazine. The Ralstons spend approximately 200 days a year searching for drowning victims in lakes and rivers throughout the West. They have found 54 people. They don’t charge families for the service; they only ask that their boat gas and travel expenses be covered.

Deven Shaff (‘04) recently completed his master of music degree in vocal performance at Colorado State University. He will be the Production Coordinator with Central City Opera and can be seen in the role of Schaunard in Opera Fort Collins production of La Boheme in August 2008. 

The C of I in the News

The College of Idaho was featured prominently in media coverage this week following the death of J.R. Simplot. Simplot was a key figure at the college for more than 50 years. A photo of Simplot, his wife Esther, and daughter and C of I Trustee Gay Simplot at the 2005 commencement ceremony when Esther received an honorary degree was on the cover of the Idaho Statesman on Monday, May 26.

President Bob Hoover was quoted in the Idaho Press-Tribune on Tuesday about Simplot’s legacy at The C of I and was interviewed by NewsChannel 7 on Tuesday for a story about Simplot’s generosity and philanthropy.

Tuesday’s political primary kept political economy Professor Jasper LiCalzi busy as well. Jasper was featured in a story about the Canyon County Sheriff’s race in the Idaho Statesman on Friday, May 23. He also participated in Today’s 6 election coverage on Tuesday.

Jobs at The C of I

Staff Openings

  • Grants and Foundations Officer
  • Director of Alumni and Parent Relations
  • DATATEL Senior Systems Programmer/Analyst

Faculty Openings

  • Asian History Visiting Assistant Professor/Instructor
  • Physics Instructor
  • Molecular Biology Instructor
  • Psychology Visiting Assistant Professor


For complete job descriptions and application instructions go to http://www.collegeofidaho.edu/jobs. EEO


  • “Take a Yote to Lunch,” pairs current C of I students with professionals in the student’s chosen career field. Students can register here. Professionals, please email Mary Bitner if you are interested in taking a Yote to lunch (or dinner, coffee, or whatever best fits your schedule.)

    The purpose of Take a Yote to Lunch is for working professionals to share information about their career, offer tips and answer questions. To qualify, students must have a declared major and a cumulative GPA of 2.0 or better. The alumni office will match students and professionals.

  • Check out Mike and Linda Danielson’s “before and after” Idaho license plates with The College of Idaho name and logo. The plates cost $35 the first year they are purchased, which is in addition to the annual vehicle registration fee. They are $25 plus annual fees for each subsequent renewal. The College of Idaho receives $25 from the sale of new plates and $15 from each renewal, which goes to its scholarship and academic programs.

    Personalized and sample license plates can be ordered online. Non-personalized plates are available at any county auto licensing office in Idaho.

  • The College of Idaho offices of development and alumni are looking for Class Agents to serve as a liaison between their College of Idaho classmates and the College. The goal of the program is to increase the percentage of alumni giving, participation and involvement.

    For more information about becoming a Class Agent, please email Jessica Jewell or call her at (208) 459-5086, or email Barry Fujishin or call him at (208) 459-5770.