ISU Magazine

Volume 40 | Number 2 | Spring/Summer 2010

Campus Shot

Hutchinson Quadrangle in the summer.

Photo by ISU Photographic Services/Susan Duncan


Spring 2010 Issue


Fred Dykes, BS chem ’52, of Pocatello, was one of three individuals whose historic photographs of Korea were featured in an exhibit at the Seoul Museum of History in October 2009. He served as a foot soldier in the Seventh Infantry Division in Seoul from December 1946 to May 1948, and witnessed the political turmoil following Korea’s independence from Japan.

Bill Harwood, BA journ ’52, became only the second member of Pocatello Lodge No. 674, to be inducted into the Idaho Elks Hall of Fame. As a member of the Elks for more than 50 years, he served as state president of Idaho, chairman of the state trustees, state trustee, district deputy grand exalted ruler, and eight years as lodge secretary. Harwood was also responsible for the Pocatello Elks newsletter for eight years. After 47 years employment at ISU, Harwood retired in June 2009.


Fred Hughes, BS sec ed and math ’62/MED curr and super ’68, and his wife, Joyce, are the 2009 recipients of the American Kennel Club Outstanding Sportsmanship Award and the Pocatello Kennel Club Lifetime Achievement Award. They have served as Pocatello Kennel Club officers and have been instrumental in bringing lure coursing trials to Southeast Idaho. They are also successful breeders of Basenji dogs.

State Sen. Diane Bilyeu, BA spch ’68, has written a children’s book, Children’s Reader’s Theater USA: Developing Self-Confidence, Reading Comprehension and Fluency. The book is comprised of five short plays, each made for performers in the reader’s theater genre. Bilyeu is currently working on another book about William Shakespeare for children. Bilyeu, and her late husband, Dr. Chick Bilyeu, were the 1990 recipients of the William J. Bartz Award at ISU.


Don Axtell, BA ed and history ’70, of Comox, British Columbia, attended a reunion of Peace Corps volunteers with whom he trained and served in India.

Deborah Barnes, MED couns & guid ’71, of Nahant, Mass., is a certified professional resumé writer and graphic artist and an active member of The Professional Association of Resumé Writers & Career Coaches. Barnes is published in Cover Letters for Dummies, 3rd Edition, and winner of the Benjamin Franklin Awards – Best Career Book of the Year. She is a workshop facilitator and coordinator at a One-Stop Career Center.

Barbara Dawson, MA Engl ’71, was named Entrepreneur of the Year for 2009 by the Women’s Council of Realtors. She has been an associate broker with Group One since 2000.

Douglas Lowry, alumnus ’71, was honored by the Pocatello High School Education Foundation in April as one of its distinguished alumni. Lowry is the dean of the Eastman School of Music at the University of Rochester; he also served seven years as the dean and Thomas James Kelly Professor of Music at the University of Cincinnati’s College Conservatory of Music.

Roger Chase, alumnus ’72, has entered into a consulting agreement with Bingham Memorial Hospital in Blackfoot to help the hospital expand its medical services in the region. Chase has also entered into a one-year contract with the City of Pocatello to offer assistance with specific water rights-acquisition and land-use issues. Chase served as Pocatello mayor the past eight years.

Paul Emerson, BA journ ’72, who served as managing editor of the Lewiston Tribune since 1981, has retired. Initially hired at the Lewiston Tribune as a sports writer in 1972, Emerson was later named sports editor.

Edward J. Pitcher, MNS biology ’73/BS nurs ’84, of Malad, has co-authored the book, The Flying of Falcons, which presents a philosophy of understanding the natural development of falcons. He is a world-renowned innovator in the field of falconry and has been involved with falconry for almost 40 years. Pitcher is also a registered steelhead guide and co-owner of Clearwater River Company.

Cecil Scott Hobdey

Cecil “Scott” Hobdey, 60, passed away Thursday, Nov. 5, 2009 at St. Alphonsus Hospital in Boise, Idaho. Scott was born August 10, 1949, in Denver, Colo., to Cecil and Elizabeth Hobdey.

Following Cecil’s graduation from law school, the family returned to their roots in Gooding, Idaho. Scott was a 1967 graduate of Gooding High School, where he had been an exceptional athlete and a member of the student government as student body vice president and participated in football, basketball, and track. Scott set records in both the 400 and 800 meter races, and was a member of the 1966 state championship basketball team.

After one year of college at Idaho State University, Scott volunteered for the Army in 1969, and served in the Vietnam War from 1970 to 1971. He was severely wounded on February 19, 1971, and was not expected to walk again. He was awarded the Purple Heart for his sacrifice. Despite the doctor’s diagnosis, Scott returned to the states and through his determination and work ethic rehabilitated his legs to their prime. He re-enrolled at Idaho State University and ran two years of track for the Bengals.

He earned his Bachelor of Arts in accounting and political science, and obtained an MBA at Idaho State University. Shortly after graduating Scott took a job with the state of Idaho and worked with the state for 33 years; 11 years as the assistant athletic director for Idaho State University, and 22 years with the Idaho Department of Labor.

Scott had many passions in life which included coaching his daughters’ soccer and basketball teams, training horses, and spending time outside. Scott cherished the Western way of life, the heat of competition, and a good day’s work. In the last few years Scott had become involved with horse racing, and through his numerous racing endeavors. He also had a love and appreciation for the great outdoors. Scott was married to Deborah Craig on Nov. 13, 1982. They had two daughters, Sarah and Jessica. He is survived by his wife Deborah, daughters Sarah and Jessica, brother Craig Hobdey of Gooding, sisters Becky (Chuck)Thompson of Boise, Kathy (Ernesto) Sanchez of Boise, Laura Hobdey of Boise, numerous nieces, nephews, and dear friends. He was preceded in death by his parents, Cecil and Elizabeth Hobdey.

A full military burial preceded a memorial at the Mountain View Cemetery. If you wish to memorialize Scott, please consider a donation to: C. Scott Hobdey Memorial Track and Field Scholarship, Idaho State University Foundation, 921 S. 8th Ave., Stop 8050, Pocatello, ID 83209.

– From the Idaho State Journal

Jack K. Bruner, BVTE voc teach ed ’78/MED ed admin ’83, retired from The Boeing Company with 20 years service as a senior maintenance teaching instructor. During that time, he traveled to many countries and taught engineers and technicians about Boeing commercial airplane systems. He is a former electronics instructor at ISU. Bruner lives in Toledo, Wash., where he is a breeder of champion alpacas.

The Honorable John M. Melanson, BA mgmt & org ’78, of Boise, was appointed to the Idaho Court of Appeals. Previously, he was elected as District Judge for the Fifth Judicial District in 2002 and 2006.


The Honorable Bryan K. Murray, BA hist ’80, was awarded the 2009 Judicial Award by the Idaho State Planning Council on Mental Health. Judge Murray has been the presiding judge over civil mental health commitments for the Sixth District for 16 years. Murray was recognized as the College of Arts and Sciences Professional Achievement Award recipient in social sciences in 2004.

Kevin Poole, BS engr ’80/MBA bus admin ’89, was selected by members of the Lewiston City Council as mayor of Lewiston, Idaho. Previously, he served two terms with the Lewiston City Council. Poole is employed at Riedesel Engineering.

Teri Rainey, BA park & rec mgmt ’80, has written Coper’s Flip Book, which is designed as a communication tool to help individuals, families and group help identify appropriate coping mechanisms to deal with feelings and unmet needs. She is a licensed clinical professional counselor and has worked in the mental health field for 25 years. Rainey works as a clinician for Children’s Mental Health and also in private practice in Lewiston.

Susan Bithell, BBA mktg ’83, a career employee with Farmers Insurance Group of Companies, is vice president and chief underwriting officer for the company. Most recently, she was a vice president and state executive director in Washington State.

Barb North, BS zoology ’84/MS zoology ’94, is a local expert in birds and selected as president of the Portneuf Valley Audubon Society. In 30 years of researching birds in the field, North has observed more than 700 types of birds in the United States and well over 1,500 types throughout the word.

John Spicer, BBA mgmt & org ’84, is the site manager for ON Semiconductor in Pocatello. Initially hired as a janitor at AMI Semiconductor in 1981, he held positions including engineering technician, line supervisor and section head. He also worked for Advanced Micro Devices in Austin, Texas, from 1987-1993.

Karen Donaldson, BS micro ’85/BS dietetics ’04, was named the Idaho Business Review’s Health Care Professional Top Honor Hero. She is the owner of EXCEL Weight Loss Solutions in Pocatello which incorporates holistic treatment of emotional and health issues as well as weight problems.

Joe Morris, BS ed & phys sci ’85/MPE athl admin ’87, of Pocatello, was named Idaho’s 2009 Advanced Placement Teacher of the Year, an award sponsored by technology conglomerate Siemens. Morris has taught 249 advanced placement students since he began teaching advanced and honors courses 10 years ago; the 95 percent pass rate for his students is well above the national average.

Alesha Churba, BS sec ed/cons econ ‘87/AAS design draft tech ’01/cert design draft tech ’01, the owner of A. E. Churba Design LLC, is a contributing writer to the trade publication, The Decorator’s Notebook. Churba is an instructor in the computer-aided design drafting program at ISU. She is the only allied member of the American Society of Interior Designers and member of the Society of Decorating Professionals with experience in residential and commercial interiors in Southeast Idaho.

Teresa Wakeman, cert comp prog sys tech ’89/AAS comp prog sys tech ’90/BBA comp info sys ’94, was named the Idaho State Journal Citizen All-Star for December 2009, in recognition of her public service as governor for the Civitan district covering nine western states. Wakeman has worked as a computer programmer analyst for Bannock County the past 15 years.


Wendy Baron, BA mass comm, ’90/MS haz waste mgmt ’96, of Chubbuck, was named Idaho’s Firefighter of the Year by the Professional Fire Fighters of Idaho at its annual convention. She works as a full-time firefighter and emergency medical technician for the Idaho National Laboratory. She has spent five years as a firefighter at the INL and also eight years as a volunteer firefighter for the Chubbuck Fire Department.

Samantha Damron, BBA finance ’93, was named executive director of the Eastern Idaho Development Corporation; she has served as the corporation’s business consultant and loan officer since 2005. Prior to joining the Eastern Idaho Development Corporation, she was branch manager for Citifinancial in Pocatello.

Duane Rawlings, BS pol sci ’93, has joined University Financial Group in Pocatello. He is a series 7/66 licensed registered representative. University Financial Group is a full service financial services agency for business and individuals. Rawlings worked the past eight years with AIG-VALIC.

Monte Gray, BBA acct ’96, of Pocatello, was honored with the Pro Bono Award from the Idaho State Bar Board of Commissioners. He is a partner at Service, Spinner and Gray, and was recognized for his dedication to the Court Appointed Special Advocate program over the past 19 years.

Brandi Townsend, cert acct clerk ’97/AAS acct clerk ’01, BBA finance ’03, of Inkom, won the Mrs. Idaho International Title. She will compete in the Mrs. International competition in Chicago, in July 2010.

Sean C. Blacker, BBA mgmt ’99, graduated from the Officer Candidate School Phase III training at North Fort Lewis, Tacoma, Wash., and was commissioned a second lieutenant in the U.S. Army National Guard. He has served in the military for five years.

Nathan Church, BS phys asst ’99, of Boise, is a physician assistant with the Urgent Care Practice of Primary Health Medical Group, located at Boise’s State Street location. He has experience in both urgent care clinics and emergency rooms. Church received his master of physician assistant studies with specialization in emergency medicine from the University of Nebraska Medical Center.

Ashley Ford, MPA pub admin ’99, is public affairs practice group leader at Red Sky Public Relations in Boise. She was formerly the principal land use planner of the Rose Law Group’s Boise office.

Capt. David McCaskill, BA history ’99, was promoted to major with the U.S. Air Force in December 2009. He was deployed to the Middle East with the Joint Surveillance Target Attack Radar System in the 7th Expeditionary Air Command and Control Squadron.


Brad Coleman, BBA comp info sys ’00/finance ’00, was promoted to vice president of quality assurance and innovation at Dickinson Frozen Foods. He has been employed with the company for three years, and most recently, led the design and implementation of a new information technology environment. Coleman earned a master’s degree at Ohio State University where he was a University Fellow, Mitte Scholar and Cullman Marketing Fellow.

Graham Garner, BA pol sci ’02/MPA pol sci ’07, is vice president of university advancement at the South Dakota School of Mines and Technology in Rapid City. He served in a variety of positions at ISU since 2003; these include alumni director, interim director of development, director of web communications and director of university relations.

Jeanne Johnson, MED ed admin ’02, was named the 2010 Outstanding Educator of the Year by ISU’s College of Education. She has served as principal for A.H. Bush Elementary School in Idaho Falls since 2003.

Sandee Moore, ‘03 BBA, has returned to Idaho as Chief Operating Officer at Eastern Idaho Regional Medical Center.
Moore comes to EIRMC from Sunrise Medical Center, a 700-bed hospital in Las Vegas, where she served as associate administrator. Before that, she worked for HCA’s HealthONE Medical Center of Aurora, a 384-bed hospital in Denver.
Moore will assist in administering day-to-day operations at EIRMC. In addition, she will directly lead several departments, including medical imaging, pharmacy, laboratory, therapy services, plant operations, and EIRMC’s Behavioral Health Center.
Born and raised in Caldwell, Moore also serves on the alumni board. She earned her master’s degree from the University of Colorado, where she was named the University’s Outstanding MBA Student and winner of the Health Programs Director’s Award.
Moore is engaged to be married later this year. She is pleased that her most recent career accomplishment brings her home to her Idaho roots.

Cheryl Koompin, BA family/cons sci ’07, of American Falls, was appointed chairwoman of the United States Potato Board. As chairwoman, she plans to promote “Feed My Starving Children,” a non-profit Christian organization committed to feeding starving children. She was elected to the board in 2005 and helped with the board’s International Food Aid Initiative in West Africa.

Melissa Madden, BS botany ’08, is on a 27-month service mission as a Peace Corps volunteer in The Gambia, West Africa. She serves primarily as a forestry volunteer working on reforestation projects and teaching locals how to conserve forests. Madden will also work with small farmers to teach them how to increase food production.

U.S. Marine Corporal Steve Winn, alumnus ’08, was deployed to serve his first tour of duty in Afghanistan. He received his third Certificate of Commendation since his enlistment in May 2009.

David Risenmay, EDS ed admin ’09, is superintendent of schools for the Oneida School District. He served as principal of North Fremont Middle and High Schools in Ashton since 2004. He is completing his doctoral dissertation at ISU.

Dr. Chander Raman, MNS micro ’84 and Dr. Robert Axtell, BS micro ’99/MNS micro ’01, are among 17 other researchers representing the University of Alabama Birmingham and Stanford University, whose findings on multiple sclerosis were published online Nature Medicine. Their research indicates that multiple sclerosis may exist in two versions, and that a patient’s responsiveness to the drug, beta-interferon, may depend on which version of the disease the patient has. Researchers concluded that a simple blood test could indicate which patients were most likely to benefit from beta-interferon, which minimizes the relapses suffered by some patients.