Alumni Stories


Bear-Proof? Student Tests Wilderness Food Containers

In the old “Yogi Bear” cartoons, you had to be “smarter than the average bear” to steal a camper’s food. But Kate McCurdy (M.S. NRPI, ’06), found that improperly stored food can attract even the average bear to a backpacker’s campsite.

HSU Alum Wins Tsunami Readiness Laurel

Humboldt State University alum Kathleen Fairchild (’05), a graduate student in the Environment and Community Master of Social Science Program, has received the Community Leader Award from the Redwood Coast Tsunami Work Group for her master’s project to bolster the tsunami readiness of the Big Lagoon community and Big Lagoon Rancheria.

Luke Trout: Uncovering Ancient Civilizations

Luke Trout’s interest in archeology began early in life – with Easter eggs. As a child, Trout would ask his family to hide the colored eggs over and over again. When his father began to manage ranch land in Colorado, Trout’s interest in Easter eggs shifted to the arrowheads he discovered there. The rest, he says, is history.

Pig Waste Project Powers New Business

Not every master’s thesis turns into an award-winning sustainability enterprise. But that’s just what happened for alum Alex Eaton (’09), who earned his master’s degree in Environmental Systems.

HSU Honors Top Alumni April 23

Humboldt State University will recognize leading alumni in the fields of business, athletics/physical education, social work and forestry science at its annual Distinguished Alumni dinner and awards presentation on Friday, April 23, in Eureka. Pre-registration is required.

Alum Named Top U.S. Professor

Humboldt State University alumnus Robert Thomas (geology, ’85), professor of geology at the University of Montana Western, Dillon, Montana, and a 2008 winner of HSU’s Distinguished Alumni Award, has been named a 2009 U.S. Professor of the Year by the Council for Advancement and Support of Education, sponsored by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching.

Alum Honored for Light Bulb Research

Humboldt State University sociology alumnus Lou Jacobson (Master’s, 2008), an energy specialist with the Redwood Coast Energy Authority, will be honored at ceremonies in San Francisco August 10 for outstanding research in barriers to student use of Compact Fluorescent Light Bulbs.

Journalism Alums Nab Emmy

Bill S. Green (’78) and Henry Mulak (’84), journalism graduates from Humboldt State University, recently took home an Emmy for their news reporting work at ABC-7 News in San Francisco.

Alum Named Guggenheim Fellow

Humboldt State alum Thomas Joshua Cooper (’69 Art, Secondary Education) has been awarded a prestigious Guggenheim Fellowship for 2009. The award will help him complete the North American portion of his wide-ranging project to photograph “the beginnings of civilization” around the Atlantic Ocean.

Top Alumni Named for 2009

Arcata – An oceanographer, a newspaper editor and an international counsel make up the trio of 2009 Distinguished Humboldt State University Alumni who will be honored at campus ceremonies April 17.

HSU Alumni Awards Dinner Set for April 17

Arcata – Humboldt State University’s Alumni Association will host its 2009 Distinguished Alumni Awards dinner and presentation on Friday, April 17, honoring Francisco Chavez (’77), senior scientist, Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute; John Diaz (’77), editorial page editor, San Francisco Chronicle; and Richard E. Winnie (’69), Alameda County Counsel and legal advisor to international governments.

HSU Alum Heads Cal Fire

Arcata – The state senate has confirmed Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s nomination of Humboldt State University alum Del Walters (’77) to be director of California’s Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (Cal Fire).

A New Look at Air Quality

When we think of air pollution we usually think of smog clouds covering places like Los Angeles or Mexico City. But how many people actually consider the consequences of indoor air pollution? Not many, according to Dr. Richard Corsi, HSU alum and architectural and engineering professor at University of Texas at Austin.

Alum Aids Green Efforts at UCLA

Despite growing up in a dense urban area, Nurit Katz remembers having a keen interest in the outdoors and environmental science as a child. Now, as sustainability coordinator for the University of California, Los Angeles, Katz is able to pursue her passions and help the campus become more ecologically friendly by applying what she learned at Humboldt State.


Humboldt Clowns Go International

Taking the show on the road has international meaning for two clowns from Humboldt State University. Shea Freelove, a senior in the Theatre, Film and Dance Department at HSU and alum Steven Dimon (’08, Political Science) recently returned from a trip to Kenya where they shared the circus arts with the Mbaranga parish.

Alum Joins Top Ranks at Forest Service

Arcata—Humboldt State alum Hank Kashdan ('73) has been named associate chief for the U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service based in Washington, D.C.

Alum Working to Implement State’s Historic Climate Bill

With the growing concern over climate change and because the lack of pre-existing federal regulations, California has struck out on its own to reduce its carbon emissions. The Golden State is known for being the country’s environmental trendsetter and is now setting the pace for carbon emissions policy with the California Climate Change Solutions Act (AB 32). AB 32 is a mandate to lower carbon emissions to 1990 levels by 2020 and to have an 80 percent reduction below 1990 levels by 2050.

Humboldt Alum Wins Audobon Fellowship

A Humboldt State alum is the recipient of a national fellowship designed to advance the work of individuals with outstanding potential to help shape a brighter environmental future.