SOU in the News – Sept. 24-26

SOU anthropology team discovers location of Battle of Hungry Hill
Mail Tribune September 26, 2012
Archaeologist to determine threats to historical items in Ashland Plaza
Daily Tidings September 26, 2012
SOU students want to increase voter registration
Daily Tidings September 26, 2012
New SOU alumni director announced
Mail Tribune September 25, 2012
SOU to host talk on overpopulation
Mail Tribune September 25, 2012
Editorial: Cheers to Eliza Schaff
Mail Tribune September 26, 2012
New college mindset list released
KDRV Newswatch 12 September 24, 2012
SOU raising money to help former basketball player Moore
Daily Tidings September 26, 2012
Full version of print clips
‘All the dots have been connected’
SOU anthropology team discovers location of Battle of Hungry Hill
By Paul Fattig
Mail Tribune
September 26, 2012 2:00 AM
The location of the Battle of Hungry Hill, the largest clash in the Rogue River Indian Wars of 1855-56, has been discovered after being lost in the dust of time for more than a century.
The site was located this month by a team led by Mark Tveskov, director of Southern Oregon University’s Laboratory of Anthropology in Ashland.
“It’s very gratifying to finally find it — we’ve done a lot of detective work,” Tveskov said, stressing it was a team effort.
The team bushwhacked up and down steep hills and pored over old records, from the National Archives in Washington, D.C., to the Bancroft Library in Berkeley, Calif., following every clue during its three-year search.
The historic battlefield was found on U.S. Bureau of Land Management property in an area known as the Grave Creek Hills west of Interstate 5 between Sunny Valley and Glendale. Hungry Hill west of Glendale is not connected with the battle, he said.
“Our search area covered more than 24 square miles,” Tveskov said, noting the exact spot is not being divulged out of concern it could spur illegal artifact hunting.
Two musket balls and other items found at the site, as well as evidence provided by historic maps and documents, nailed down the location, he said.
“All the dots have been connected,” he said.
The site is important because it will undoubtedly shed light on the short-lived war, he said. No detailed, contemporary firsthand account about the battle by an Army officer had ever been found.
Until Robert Kentta, historian and member of the Confederated Tribes of Siletz Indians, discovered a front-­page article in the New York Herald that was dated Nov. 12, 1855, from Crescent City, Calif., that provided precise information that only an Army officer who was in the battle would have known, Tveskov said. The anonymous correspondent who wrote the article was undoubtedly Lt. August V. Kautz, a survivor of the battle, he said.
Another important new clue was a copy of a battle map drawn by Kautz discovered in the National Archives by retired Army Col. Daniel Edgerton, who had worked in the U.S. Army Center of Military History, Tveskov added.
Others helping in the effort were SOU archaeologist Chelsea Rose, BLM employees, SOU students and tribal volunteers, he said.
“Sometimes when you are out there, walking through the woods and finding nothing, you feel like you are crazy for doing it,” he said. “And we had been doing that for three years.”
They also followed the clues of local folks who searched before them.
In 1934, Richard I. Helms, a reporter for the Daily Courier newspaper in Grants Pass, believed he had found the battle site atop a prominent site in the Grave Creek Hills, Tveskov said.
“We actually looked there and didn’t find any artifacts,” he said.
But historian and pioneer descendant Larry McLane, author of a 1995 book called “First There was Twogood: a Pictorial History of Northern Josephine County,” argued the battle occurred near a site local residents call Bloody Spring, Tveskov said. No evidence of a battle was found at that site by the team, he said.
Armed with the new information provided by Kentta and Edgerton, the team made one last field trip for the summer early in September, he said.
The historic documents indicated the battle began on Oct. 25 at one site, ending on the night of Oct. 31 at another location, he noted.
“Those two locations are described with reference to each other,” he explained. “When we found the first musket ball, which was on the main Oct. 31 battlefield site, then, for me, that meant that the Oct. 25th site had to be over there.”
They went to the other spot where they found the other musket ball, convincing them they had finally rediscovered the battle site, he said.
“We also found a lead stopper to a gunpowder tin which has ‘DuPont’ on it,” he said, noting it referred to DuPont de Nemours & Co. of Wilmington, Del. “DuPont was the main supplier of gunpower to the U.S. military in the 1800s.”
An identical lead stopper to a gunpowder tin was found during the team’s archaeological dig at Fort Lane across the Rogue River from the Table Rocks, he added.
“The .69-caliber musket balls we found were the same that had been found at Fort Lane,” he said. “That was the standard long arm for the Dragoon from the fort — the model 1842 Springfield musketoon.
“The Army officers say the Native Americans had better guns than the dragoons,” he added. “In some of the written accounts about the battle, they talk about better arms among the Indians was one of the reasons the soldiers got pinned down.”
Neither of the musket balls had been fired, he said.
There were some 300 Army and militia on one side with about 200 Native Americans, including women and children, representing the remainder of the participants, Tveskov said.
“There were 39 casualties on the (Army’s) side, including 10 who died on the battlefield,” he said. “A number of people died later. On the Native American side, 16 dead on the battlefield seems to be the number people can agree on.”
Despite being outnumbered, the Native Americans won the day, he said.
“From a tactical point of view, the Army and militia were routed,” he said.
The battle was “the worst defeat, particularly in terms of the total number of casualties, suffered by the combined force of U.S. Army and Oregon Volunteers in Oregon during the Indian wars,” Edgerton said.
The battle was triggered by the Lupton massacre in which more than two dozen Indians were slain in a village near the Table Rocks on Oct. 8, 1855, by vigilantes from Jacksonville, Tveskov said. The fleeing Indians split into at least two groups, with one seeking protection at Fort Lane while the other, led by Chiefs George and Limpy, headed down the Rogue River, killing several settlers en route, he said.
The battle delayed the end of the Rogue River Indian War until summer 1856, he said.
“It was an attempt by Capt. (Andrew Jackson) Smith from Fort Lane and the volunteer militia to end the Rogue River Indian War just as it was getting started,” he said. “It was a tactical victory for the Indians but it sealed their fate.
“It ultimately led to the removal of Indians from Southern Oregon to the Grand Ronde and Siletz reservations,” he said.
With the discovery of the battle site, the team will be working with the BLM, the Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde, Confederated Tribes of Siletz Indians and the Cow Creek Band of Umpqua Indians to conserve the battlefield and learn more from it, he said.
“We want to go over this with a fine-tooth comb,” he said. “We want to be able to tell a story about how the battle progressed.”
Reach reporter Paul Fattig at 541-776-4496 or email him at
Archaeologist to determine threats to historical items in Plaza project
Work cost estimated at $170,000; archaeologist cost not yet known
By Sam Wheeler
Ashland Daily Tidings
September 26, 2012 2:00 AM
Ashland will have to hire an archaeologist to study whether a redesign of the Plaza would threaten artifacts buried nearby before construction can proceed.
Once it has the archaeologist’s report in hand, the Oregon State Historic Preservation Office will determine which areas of the redesign might threaten artifacts and what the city should do to recover them or make sure they’re not disturbed, said Dennis Griffin, state archaeologist for the historic preservation office.
The city will be required to dig small test pits in some areas and deeper test pits in others to help the SHPO determine whether artifacts are present within the project area, he said.
“Other portions of the project will probably only require a professional archaeologist to monitor ground-disturbing activities,” Griffin said. “An archaeologist now will assist the city in determining where which strategy will work the best.”
The city is searching for an archaeologist to conduct the survey, said city planner Amy Gunter.
“We will be waiting to find out what an archaeologist discerns from the documents we have collected “… the state will let us know what needs to be done,” she said.
The cost of the archaeological work has not been determined, said Scott Fleury, the city’s project supervisor.
“It seems like overkill for what we plan to do,” said City Administrator Dave Kanner. “Of course we will comply with whatever SHPO asks of us “… but does this mean we have to contract with an archaeologist every time we replace a sidewalk, dig a utility trench, or replace a tree in the downtown area?”
Before the state issued its recent decision, Kanner said he doubted a survey of the site for traces of American Indian and settler artifacts would be required, because most of the original topsoil there has been covered by several feet of fill dirt since Ashland was settled in the mid-1800s.
“I don’t think we will be disturbing anything,” he said.
There are known archaeological sites that could be affected by the redesign work and specifically the planned tree removal, which would extend to a depth of about three feet, Griffin said.
Two archaeological surveys have been conducted along Ashland Creek upstream from the Plaza, and uncovered large quantities of Native American and settler artifacts, said Mark Tveskov, Southern Oregon University associate professor of anthropology and director of SOU’s anthropology laboratory.
In 2002, Tveskov led a limited survey along the creek that uncovered remnants of an ancient fireplace, a glass bead, arrow heads, pieces of stone tool and several chips of worked stone, he said. That work was intermingled with the city’s effort to extend a utility trench of Winburn Way.
Another unofficial survey was conducted in the 1980s on the grassy area at the entrance to Lithia Park, but was never finalized in an official report, Tveskov said.
That dig, where the former Ashland Flour Mill stood, was led by then SOU professors Nan Hannon and Rich Olmo and revealed hundreds of Native American and settler artifacts, Tveskov said.
Tveskov said he is not familiar with the intricacies of the Ashland Plaza redesign or its proposed impact, and he is uncertain whether the project warrants a similar survey.
The redesign calls for removing several large trees on the Plaza that are suffering from ground compaction above their root systems. They will be replaced with tree species more suited to tight urban environments.
The estimated cost to carry out the Plaza redesign is $170,000. The city plans to use lodging tax revenues set aside for downtown improvements and economic development.
“Our office looks forward to working with them as they move forward toward development of their project,” Griffin said.
Officials typically don’t reveal the exact location of defined archaeological sites, because people have been prone to looting them.
Reach reporter Sam Wheeler at 541-499-1470 or email
Why Vote?
Students, officials work to increase voter registration
By John Darling
For the Tidings
September 26, 2012 2:00 AM
It’s not as exciting as 2008, but this year’s presidential election is swelling the voter registration rolls in Jackson County — and bringing out cynicism about voting in others.
Registration here went past the 117,000 mark Tuesday on Oregon Voter Registration Day and, said County Clerk Chris Walker, may slide past the 119,664 mark set in the November 2008 presidential election.
Students stopping by a voter registration table in Southern Oregon University’s Stevenson Union on Tuesday all said they planned to vote, most of them mentioning “defunding of education” as a big reason, but many mentioned they had friends who weren’t interested.
“I’ll register, but I’m real busy with school and athletics,” said SOU wrestler Taylor Johnson. “I have a pile of friends who aren’t going to vote and don’t really care. It’s kind of the scene with this generation.”
Senior Mallory Crocker said she’d vote “because the system isn’t going the right way, but my vote probably won’t make a difference. I have quite a bit of friends who say their vote makes no difference.”
“I’m registered and I’ll vote, if I get around to it,” said freshman Marshall Miller as she studied in the autumn sun on the quad. “I’m angry about the Electoral College, though. (The Electoral College gives all of a state’s votes to the candidate supported by the majority.) Honestly, I have to ask if my vote makes a difference. But it’s worth a try and you hope for the best.”
Connor Wilkes, an Ashland High School graduate who went on to Portland Community College, said it’s hard to trust politicians, as they haven’t followed through on their promises — and he feels his vote for president is diminished by the Electoral College — but “I still might vote.”
Wilkes added, “I don’t really put my faith in any politician anymore. You can’t know their real intent and if it’s really benefiting the country or just their selected group.”
Leading the voter-registration drive on campus, SOU Associated Students President Joshua Danielson said they hope to register 1,300 students this year, compared with about 1,000 four years ago.
“We tell students it’s very important for us to get together and be able to tell legislators we have lots of students registered and that we want a stop to the continual disinvestment in higher education,” said Danielson.
An obstacle, he notes, is that many students are from other states and attend SOU on a Western Undergraduate Scholarship and would lose residency in their home state if they vote in Oregon.
State Rep. Peter Buckley, D-Ashland, who recently spoke to the Oregon Student Association at SOU, said he’s heard comments from young voters that they didn’t get what they wanted from the last presidential election.
Nevertheless, he said, “I feel the turnout is going to be close to 2008 because there’s so much energy from the economic collapse plus all the damage done to the country in the eight years before that. There’s a strong desire to get people out to vote.”
State Rep. Dennis Richardson, R-Central Point, said he thinks there’s a high level of interest in this election.
“People are very much engaged in the election,” Richardson said, “and concerned about what the future holds for their children.”
Allen Hallmark, former chairman of the Jackson County Democratic Central Committee, said he’s disappointed in President Barack Obama’s performance on his promises but, unlike many of his friends, he does not plan to vote for a third-party candidate.
“The main thing is that people ought to vote,” said Hallmark, “and learn the issues and candidates. They have the freedom to vote or not, but it doesn’t take that much time to get up to speed — and we’d get a lot more of what we want and the country would work a lot better if they did.”
Secretary of State Kate Brown visited upstate high schools Tuesday to encourage voter registration, which can now be done online at and takes only 10 minutes, according her website. She offered to send a five-minute video to schools, detailing how to register and vote.
Local high schools didn’t have any events for Oregon Voter Registration Day. Todd Bloomquist, director of secondary education for the Medford School District, said the subject is covered in social science classes and that registration “is up to the individual and is not a function of public schools.”
The deadline for voter registration in Oregon is Oct. 16.
John Darling is a freelance writer living in Ashland. E-mail him at
New SOU alumni director announced
September 25, 2012 12:00 PM
Southern Oregon University’s new alumni director is an alumnus himself, as well as a graduate of Eagle Point High School.
Mike Beagle, 49, was a member of the Southern Oregon State College Raiders football team in the mid-1980s and a three-time all conference defensive back. He graduated in 1985 with a bachelor’s degree in history, according to an SOU news release.
Beagle also served in the 9th Infantry Division at Fort Lewis as a field artillery officer and received a master’s degree in history and government from the University of Portland in 1993.
Beagle has worked recently with the Raider Booster Club, Raider Red Zone and Trout Unlimited.
Southern Oregon University has 29,275 living alumni, and more than one-third of them live in Southern Oregon.
SOU to host talk on overpopulation
September 25, 2012 12:00 PM
Southern Oregon University will present a talk on global population growth and its challenges at 5:15 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 27, in the SOU Science Building Auditorium, Room 118.
The talk, “Beyond 7 Billion: The Challenges of Global Population Growth,” is free and open to the public.
Stacie Murphy, public policy associate with Washington D.C.’s Population Connection Center, will lead the talk. She will discuss the history of population growth and the social, environmental and political challenges a rapidly growing population presents.
Cheers and Jeers
Thumbs down to the NFL’s mess; thumbs up to a woman’s write of passage
September 26, 2012 2:00 AM
Jeers: To the National Football League for the replacement ref debacle that is unfolding before the nation’s eyes.
OK, we feel a little guilty piling on this one, but it’s hard to look past the Monday night game in which the Seattle Seahawks quarterback threw, as one pundit put it, the only winning interception in the history of Monday Night Football.
For those of you who may not have seen the game or the endless coverage that followed its bizarre ending, the “interception” on the last play of the game — and in the end zone — was declared a touchdown, allowing the Seahawks to defeat the Green Bay Packers 14-12.
It was far from the only bad call of the night, with Seattle also getting stuck with a few critical referee mistakes, but this one decided the game and was so egregiously wrong that even the Seahawks fans on the Mail Tribune editorial board concede it was an error.
The NFL compounded that error Tuesday by saying the refs made the correct call. Sorry, guys, but you must have forgotten that several million people were watching and saw the interception. It was laughable, if you weren’t a Green Bay fan.
The NFL is a multi-billion dollar operation. The $18 million the league pays the refs is a relative pittance — not enough green bills there to cover the embarrassment of Monday night.
Jeers: As long as we’re on football, the viewing audience would be better served in almost all NFL games, and in many college games, if the football were just placed at the 20- or 25-yard line instead of going though the charade of kickoffs into and out of the end zones. Rule changes that moved the kickoffs farther upfield have also benched one of the most exciting plays of the game. Borrrrring.
Cheers: To Eliza Schaff, who is headed back to the college classroom after being shown the door in 2010. Schaff, who has Down syndrome, was asked to leave a Southern Oregon University class because the instructor felt that she required too much individual time. While there’s no doubt that crowded public universities don’t have the luxury of providing much individual attention, the ham-handed expulsion angered many in the community.
Now Eliza is enrolled at Highline Community College near Seattle, Wash., which has a program specifically for developmentally disabled students. It seems like a good fit and good news for Eliza, her parents and her many supporters.
Cheers: Posthumously, to Patricia Ann Mills-Spencer-Bemis-Adams, who penned her own obituary, filling it with humor, hope, a few frank details and a lot of personality. Ms. Mills-Spencer-Bemis-Adams died Aug. 27, but, save for the date, had written her own obituary before passing. It was published in Sunday’s Mail Tribune. If you missed it, it’s worth digging out your Sunday paper to read, or check it out online at
Hmmm: No cheers, no jeers for incoming District Attorney Beth Heckert, who along with her husband owns some low-income rental units in Phoenix. It’s unfair to label them slumlords, as the tenants and city officials our reporter talked with had no complaints. But Tuesday’s story included these descriptions of the units: patched windows, old pipes, tattered siding, peeling paint, water damage and mold. And a photograph showed a front door on one of the units that was beyond repair.
Credit to the Heckerts for fixing things up, including replacing the door; but it’s worth noting the repairs are being done in the wake of a TV news story prompted by complaints.
SOU raising money to help former basketball player Moore
Moore confined to wheelchair with life-threatening disease
September 26, 2012 2:00 AM
Former Southern Oregon men’s basketball player Erion Moore is in need of financial assistance as he battles Systemic Scleroderma, and the SOU athletic department is teaming up with criminology professor Lore Rutz-Burri and others who want to help Erion raise the funds needed for his treatment.
Moore played basketball for the Raiders from 2005-07 and was one of the more popular student-athletes to attend SOU before graduating with a degree in criminal justice. In February 2009, at age 26, he was diagnosed with Systemic Scleroderma, a chronic connective tissue disease that affects the skin, esophagus, gastrointestinal tract, lungs, heart and other organs.
Moore contracted the most severe type of the disease and has been confined to a wheel chair for the past year. His disease is rapidly progressing and life-threatening, and he can no longer care for himself either physically or financially.
He is scheduled to have a stem cell transplant at Chicago’s Northwestern Memorial Hospital to reverse the symptoms. While Medicaid is covering the cost of the operation, Moore will have to stay in Chicago for six weeks while he undergoes chemotherapy and radiation treatment to prepare for the transplant. Friends and fans of Moore are hoping to raise enough money to cover the $15,000 expected costs for his time in Chicago.
A “donative account” has been set up at Umpqua Bank under the fund name “Erion Moore II Scleroderma Fund,” and checks can be made out to “Erion Moore, II, Scleroderma Fund” and sent to the SOU athletic department for deposit into the account. The department will also be taking donations at the annual men’s basketball Alumni Game, scheduled for Oct. 20.
Playing primarily as a power forward, Moore provided added muscle to a 2005-06 Southern Oregon Raider squad that advanced to the NAIA Division II national tournament. Earlier that season, Southern Oregon ran off 15 straight wins.

SOU Archaeologists Discover Lost Indian War Battlefield

“In 1855, more than 500 Native American warriors, pioneer militiamen, and U.S. Army dragoons engaged in a desperate battle for control over Southern Oregon.  Despite being the largest battle of the Rogue River Wars and one of the largest of the Indian wars of the American West, the details of this battle have, until now, been lost to history, and the location of the fight forgotten.” — Mark Tveskov, Professor of Anthropology, Southern Oregon University
The battle was “the worst defeat, particularly in terms of the total number of casualties, suffered by the combined force of U.S. Army and Oregon Volunteers in Oregon during the Indian wars.” — COL (ret.) Daniel Edgerton, U.S. Army History Center

Read more

Southern Oregon University names new Alumni Director

Mike Beagle

Mike Beagle, 49, the new alumni director at Southern Oregon University, is an Eagle Point native and an SOU alumnus.

(Ashland, Ore.) Southern Oregon University announces the appointment of Mike Beagle ‘85 as Alumni Director at the university. Beagle, an Eagle Point HS graduate, taught high school social studies for 15 years and coached football and baseball for 19 years. As a member of the SOSC Raiders football team in the mid-80s, Beagle lettered all four years and was a three-time, all conference defensive back. After graduating from Southern Oregon State College with a bachelor’s degree in history, Beagle served as an Army field artillery officer in the 9th Infantry Division at Fort Lewis, Wash. He received a master’s degree in history and government from the University of Portland in 1993.
Read more

Population Growth to be Discussed at SOU This Week

 (Ashland, Ore.) – The challenges presented by global population growth will be discussed on Thursday at SOU. Stacie Murphy, Public Policy Associate with the Population Connection center in Washington, D.C., will present “Beyond 7 Billion: The Challenges of Global Population Growth” at 5:15 p.m., September 27, in the SOU Science Building Auditorium, room 118. The talk is free and open to the public.

Murphy will speak about the history of population growth and its possible future trajectories, the social, environmental, and political challenges of providing for the needs of a rapidly growing population, and the need for universal access to voluntary family planning. She will also open a discussion on the barriers to achieving universal access.
Population Connection is the national grassroots group dedicated to education and outreach on the impact of rapid global population growth. Murphy first came to Population Connection in 2007 as a Government Relations Fellow. She joined the full time staff in 2008 as a Public Policy Associate. She represents the organization both on Capitol Hill and in meetings with coalition partners, and particularly enjoys getting outside the Beltway to speak on population issues for general audiences. She also manages the Email Action Network, helping keep 45,000 grassroots members informed and active on the organization’s issues. Murphy holds a Master of Public Policy degree from the George Washington University, with a concentration in Gender and Social Policy.
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SOU in the News – Sept 4-21

If you are unable to access local newspaper content on your computer, scroll down this page to view print clips
Move-in day at SOU
Daily Tidings September 21, 2012
Student Affairs post cut in SOU transition
Mail Tribune September 21, 2012
SOU professor Craig Wright and “Cast of Clowns” perform next week at Applegate Lodge
Daily Tidings September 20, 2012
SOU archaeologist Mark Tveskov says Ashland’s Plaza is an area of historic interest
Mail Tribune September 12, 2012
An SOU administrator started Cycle Oregon rolling 25 years ago
Daily Tidings September 8, 2012
SOU is a “Military Friendly” school
KDRV September 18, 2012
The President’s blog is back
September 20, 2012
SOU’s gym gets a new floor
YouTube September 4, 2012
Saturday is home opener for football Raiders
Klamath Falls Herald and News September 20, 2012
Full version of print clips
Move-in day
New and returning students have help settling in at SOU
By Sam Wheeler
Ashland Daily Tidings
September 21, 2012 2:00 AM
Thursday was move-in day for hundreds of students who will live in the dormitories at Southern Oregon University this fall.
More than 50 volunteers from SOU’s sports teams and Reserve Officers Training Corps helped their new colleagues schlepp luggage up countless flights of stairs as the mercury climbed well into the 80s.
“That was awesome “… they ran right up to the truck when we parked and started unloading stuff,” said Josh Barnhart, 19, a freshman from Roseville, Calif., who plans to major in criminal justice, minor in outdoor leadership, and play goalie on SOU’s lacrosse team.
With all the extra help, it took just two trips to haul Barnhart’s five or six loads’ worth of luggage, refrigerator, microwave, posters, books and other belongings into his fourth-floor room in the Greensprings Residential Complex.
“I really became interested in the school after I became interested in the area,” Barnhart said. “I am from around Sacramento “… so it’s a big change. I just like everything about it here.”
Barnhart considered multiple colleges in the Midwest and California that expressed interest in his lacrosse talent, said his dad, Sonny Mannan.
“We said no to scholarship money to make this happen,” Mannan said. “That’s what you’ve got to do; he loves the outdoors, loves to snowboard. You can’t be somewhere flat if you like to do that sort of thing “… his happiness is what’s important.”
About 1,000 students are expected to move into the Greensprings, Cascade Residential Complex, Madrone Apartments and Susanne Home, bringing capacity to about 95 percent, said housing director Tim Robitz.
About 300 athletes and participants in a civil engagement program have been in the halls for a few weeks, Robitz said. About 500 students moved in Thursday, and another 200 will trickle in throughout the weekend, he said.
“We have more returners this year “… I don’t think we have that large of an incoming class,” Robitz said.
The university isn’t expecting its enrollment to climb any higher than last fall term’s 6,744 students, said Jim Beaver, director of Interactive Marketing and Media Relations at SOU, but enrollment figures won’t be available for about a month.
Last year, more transfer students from Rogue Community College, an influx of students from California and a more than 25 percent increase in Hispanic student enrollment were primary contributors to a record-breaking term. If fall enrollment does not increase this academic year, it will mark the end of a five-year population swell at the institution.
There is still a steady flow of California students choosing SOU, Beaver said, but the number of registered transfer students coming from community colleges is down.
Mannan, who plans to stay in the Rogue Valley and “have a look around” this weekend, said he wants to give his son plenty of space to settle in and meet his new neighbors.
Freshman Jonathan Dotson of Coquille had all of his stuff packed away into his new room by 10:30 a.m. The only thing missing, he said, was food.
“We’re heading to the grocery store right now,” Dotson said, alongside mom Andrea Murphy and grandmother Jackie Dotson.
Dotson said he plans to major in biology.
“I’m not worried about him. … He’s the responsible one,” Murphy said. “No tears yet, we’re having fun “… but we haven’t said goodbye.”
Reach reporter Sam Wheeler at 541-499-1470 or
Student affairs post cut in SOU transition
By Sam Wheeler
for the Mail Tribune
September 21, 2012 2:00 AM
Southern Oregon University is eliminating its vice president of student affairs position, leaving Jonathan Eldridge without a job by the end of the year.
Campus officials said Thursday the position was being cut as part of an effort to hand over the responsibilities of the department to other areas of campus.
The university hopes to have the reorganization and transition process wrapped up by the end of December, officials said.
“We have a transition team in place “… we’ll be working over this term to come up with a new plan to complete the reorganization,” said Jim Beaver, SOU director of interactive marketing and media relations. “Our goal right now is to be as student-focused as we possibly can “… we want to achieve more interdependence and more collaboration across campus.”
Eldridge did not return multiple voice messages left on his office and cellphones Thursday.
Eldridge last month announced that four management-level positions would be eliminated in the Department of Student Affairs, including dean of students, held by Laura O’Bryon. SOU hoped to increase student retention and graduation rates by replacing those positions with up to eight lower-level, student support personnel.
Beaver wasn’t certain exactly how many positions could arise from the department’s reorganization, or whether there will even be a students affairs department after the process ends.
“That’s what the transition is about “… they’re trying to figure most of that stuff out,” he said.
Eldridge will remain on SOU’s payroll through the end of December to help the university work through the reorganization, Beaver said.
After that process is over, Eldridge “will be moving on,” Beaver said.
SOU hopes to increase students’ access to one-on-one advising time focused on post-graduation success, such as career development and finding a job, Beaver said.
SOU currently is working to hire a director of retention, which will be an administrative position and hold many of the responsibilities O’Bryon handled as dean of students, Eldridge said last month.
Some of Eldridge’s responsibilities likely will be taken over by the Academic Affairs Department, Beaver said.
The school is also hiring a career preparation coordinator, an additional adviser, a coordinator for the university’s student support program called Success at Southern, a councilor in the student health center, and two administrative program assistants, its website shows.
Eldridge said last month the reorganization may also include hiring two part-time counseling positions.
SOU’s goal is to push the retention rate to 75 percent within the next two years. In 2005, the school retained 62 percent of its previous year’s non-graduating student population. Currently the school’s retention rate is floating around 70 percent.
In an email Eldridge wrote to the entire SOU staff announcing the reorganization effort, he said, “It goes without saying that staff reductions due to state disinvestment, coupled with student demographics that require significant levels of support, have hampered our retention efforts. This is why the following reorganization is being launched.”
Beaver said the reorganization will help SOU better align its resources to meet student needs, and “get the most out of what we have.”
Reach Ashland Daily Tidings reporter Sam Wheeler at 541-499-1470 or
‘Have a Heart’
By Teresa Thomas
for Revels
September 20, 2012 6:00 PM
From the beginning, Cast of Clowns was a means for bringing some of the San Francisco Bay Area’s best to Southern Oregon.
“My intention was to use it (the band) as a vehicle to play with world-class players,” says frontman and Ashland-based guitarist Craig Wright.
Formed in 2008, the band features a revolving lineup of local and California musicians, including Greg Anton (Zero), Melvin Seals (Jerry Garcia Band), Bill Kreutzmann (Grateful Dead), Hutch Hutchinson (Bonnie Raitt), Damian Erskine (Peter Erskine and Gino Vanelli) and Jeff Pevar (Crosby, Stills & Nash and Ray Charles), to name a few.
These and other Clowns are featured on the band’s debut album, “Have a Heart,” set for release Oct. 28.
A configuration of Cast of Clowns, featuring Wright, Anton on drums, Erskin on bass and Applegate musicians John Stiemert on keyboards and Aaron Alkire on pedal-steel guitar, as well as several surprise guests from the Bay Area, will perform at 8 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 26, at Applegate River Lodge, 15100 Highway 238, Applegate.
“Have a Heart” comprises seven original songs and an interpretation of Merl Saunder’s “Merl’s Boogie.” The album was recorded live at the Oregon Country Fair near Eugene and produced by Brian Risner of Los Angeles.
“It’s a wonderful reflection of the band,” Wright says. “There’s some beautiful music on the thing.”
For the most part, the album is made up of improvisational, good-time rock ‘n’ roll steeped in swampy, Louisiana-style jazz, blues and folk, but there also are a few darker songs, such as “End of the World Blues” by Grateful Dead lyricist Robert Hunter and “An Offering,” a funk prayer by Wright.
Wright says the tempo and style of a song may vary from show to show depending on the musicians and audience. Typically, he and Anton lay down a base rhythm and let the other musicians layer their magic over the top.
When you’ve got great musicians backing you, there’s no need to work out every arrangement in advance, Wright says.
“And rarely do I tell somebody what to play,” he says. “For the most part, they honor my intent but do what is most comfortable to them.”
Wright, who teaches creative writing at Southern Oregon University, says his lyrics tend to be abstract. He says he likes to write about “the invisible people we walk past every day on the street and in the mall.”
One example, “Lois Lane’s Lament,” a song rife with Superman references, suggests Superman could be anyone. The chorus goes, “She don’t know I’m Superman.”
Tickets to Cast of Clowns’ concert at Applegate River Lodge are $15. Call 541-761-9394.
If you go
Who: Cast of Clowns
When: 8 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 26
Where: Applegate River Lodge, 15100 Highway 238, Applegate
Cover: $15
Call: 541-761-9394
A buried past?
Uncertainty about what historic artifacts might be found under the Ashland Plaza could delay implementation of its redesign
By Sam Wheeler
for the Mail Tribune
September 12, 2012 2:00 AM
The city of Ashland is waiting to hear back from the Oregon State Historic Preservation Office on whether it will be required to carry out an archaeological survey of the downtown Plaza before a planned redesign can begin.
The state office asked the city to send a map of the project so it could determine whether that part of the Plaza is included on the state’s list of historic and archaeological properties.
“We know that certain areas of downtown Ashland are in that inventory … They will let us know if there is anything we are required to do,” said City Administrator Dave Kanner.
Kanner said he doubts the city will be required to survey the site for traces of Native American and settler artifacts because most of the original topsoil there has been covered by several feet of fill dirt since Ashland was settled in the mid-1800s.
“We’re not excavating to a depth that is of concern,” Kanner said. “We’re disturbing dirt only at the surface level.”
Two past archeological surveys that were conducted along Ashland Creek upstream from the Plaza uncovered large quantities of Native American and settler artifacts, said Mark Tveskov, Southern Oregon University associate professor of anthropology and director of SOU’s anthropology laboratory.
In 2002, Tveskov led a limited survey along the creek that uncovered remnants of an ancient fireplace, a glass bead, arrowheads, pieces of stone tool and several chips of worked stone, he said.
Another unofficial survey was conducted in the 1980s on the grassy area at the entrance to Lithia Park, but never was finalized in an official report, Tveskov said.
That dig, where the former Ashland Flour Mill stood, was led by then SOU professors Nan Hannon and Rich Olmo and revealed hundreds of Native American and settler artifacts, Tveskov said.
Tveskov said he is not familiar with the intricacies of the Ashland Plaza redesign or its proposed impact, and he is uncertain whether the project warrants a similar survey.
“Certainly, Ashland’s downtown is an area of interest,” he said. “It’s the downtown core, and it’s been that way since pre-history.”
Ashland resident Cici Brown said she would like to see the Plaza area surveyed by an archaeologist before the redesign begins.
“I am not against the redesign, I’m just annoyed that they (the city) didn’t do an investigation into this before approving the plan,” she said.
The potential archeological significance of the area was not formally discussed by the City Council before it voted on the redesign.
Council members Mike Morris, Greg Lemhouse, Dennis Slattery and Russ Silbiger voted in favor of the redesign, while council members David Chapman and Carol Voisin voted against the plan.
Before work can begin on the redesign, the city will have to wait for the state to determine what impact the project might have on artifacts that potentially lie buried beneath one of Ashland’s premier public spaces.
“If SHPO tells us we need to do something, we’ll do it,” Kanner said.
Reach Daily Tidings reporter Sam Wheeler at 541-499-1470 or
Cycle Oregon honors idea originator
Movement was sparked in 1987 by Ashland resident Jim Beaver
By Paul Fattig
For the Tidings
September 08, 2012 2:00 AM
A quarter of a century ago an Ashland innkeeper planted a seed that continues to grow across Oregon.
Consider this: Since 1987, when Jim Beaver proposed what became Cycle Oregon, 44,000 riders have pedaled more than 20 million miles across Oregon, pouring more than $137 million into the state.
“It’s incredibly humbling,” said Beaver, now 64, of his idea’s legacy. “It’s like Johnny Appleseed planting a seed. It has turned into a giant apple orchard across the state.
“But it was an idea whose time had come,” he added. “I just happened to be the lucky guy who thought of it.”
The silver anniversary ride of Cycle Oregon begins Sunday in Bly and ends there on Sept. 15.
Back in 1987, Beaver was on the Ashland Visitor and Convention Advisory Board and was attending a meeting in a conference room at the Daily Tidings newspaper. The event was a brainstorming session on how to promote a proposed sister city relationship between Ashland and Astoria.
Drawing on memories of a biking tour he and his wife, Nancy, had made in Europe in 1979 and a magazine article about a bike ride across Iowa that drew 7,000 riders, Beaver figured a bike ride from Ashland to Astoria was the answer.
“If they could get 7,000 to ride across cornfields in Iowa, imagine what we could get in Oregon?” he recalled thinking. “We have beautiful forest trails, whitewater rivers, incredible beaches, just amazing scenery.”
His idea was picked up by Oregonian newspaper columnist Jonathan Nicholas. His column, which included an interview with Beaver, prompted Debby Kennedy, head of tourism promotion in the state office of economic development, to contact Beaver.
And the rest, as they say, is history.
The first event was from Salem to Brookings. And Beaver was working and couldn’t take time off for the ride.
But the following year — Cycle Oregon II — he rode in the Portland-to-Ashland tour as the “ambassador” for the event.
The bright idea of Beaver’s has lost none of its luster: The 2,200 riding slots available for Cycle Oregon XV sold out in 31 minutes, according to Jerry Norquist, Cycle Oregon’s executive director. In addition to the record time for filling the openings, the 500-person waiting list was filled in an additional 40 minutes, he added.
“We are where we are today because of Jim — he made it a reality,” Norquist said. “He came up with the idea. He saw the opportunity.”
To honor Beaver and the anniversary, the 25th annual event will tour through Southern Oregon Sunday, spending two nights in Ashland.
“We’re getting back to our roots,” Norquist said.
Beginning in Bly on Sept. 9, the riders will spend their first night in Silver Lake, some 70 miles north. On Sept. 10 they pedal southwest to historic Fort Klamath where they stay overnight. On Sept. 11, they will ride up to the rim of Crater Lake where they can take a lap around the lake before coasting much of the way down to Prospect where they will spend their third night.
They will ride to Ashland on Sept. 12 where they will have a two-night layover. Participants on Sept. 13 can rest or ride to the Mount Ashland ski area. A ceremony will be held that evening to honor Beaver.
Cycle Oregon heads east on the morning of Sept. 14 via Dead Indian Memorial Road to spend the night in Klamath Falls. On Sept. 15, the riders head back to Bly to complete their tour of Southern Oregon.
Cycle Oregon has a Facebook page, a Flickr page for photos and a Twitter feed. Event organizers are providing riders with a mobile technology station that will allow them to post updates and photos.
Like past Cycle Oregons, the 2012 event will inject much-needed money into small towns while supporting cycling and Oregon tourism by providing riders with a beautiful perspective of the state, Norquist indicated.
He likened the event to a traveling town that includes thousands of camping tents, a huge dining tent, a concert stage, beer garden, retail tents, food and drink vendors, facilities for massage, yoga and acupuncture, and portable showers and toilets.
“We have 130 volunteers who travel with us,” Norquist observed, adding that it takes hundreds of other volunteers throughout the state to pull the event off each year.
“There are so many people who contribute to Cycle Oregon each year,” he said.
Meanwhile, two riders who will be participating this year are Jim and Nancy Beaver.
“It’s a big challenge — I’m not in condition for it,” Jim Beaver said. “I had to borrow a bicycle and riding clothes. But I’ll be wearing the same shoes I rode in our bike tour in Europe in 1979.”
Reach reporter Paul Fattig at 776-4496 or e-mail

Southern Oregon University Awarded “Military Friendly Schools” Title from Victory Media Inc

(Ashland, Ore.) Victory Media, the premier media entity for military personnel transitioning into civilian life, has named Southern Oregon University to the coveted Military Friendly Schools list. The 2013 Military Friendly Schools list honors the top 15 percent of colleges, universities and trade schools that are doing the most to embrace America’s military service members, veterans, and spouses as students and ensure their success on campus. Read more

Cycle Oregon Camps at SOU

The 2000+ riders of Cycle Oregon are camped out on the SOU athletic fields in preparation for tomorrow’s departure. It really is a sight to behold.
Read more

SOU Celebrates Constitution Day

(Ashland, Ore.) — In recognition of Constitution Day, Southern Oregon University will host activities on the Ashland Campus commemorating the signing of the U.S. Constitution on September 17, 1787.

Read more

SOU in the News – Aug. 30 to Sept. 4


Mail Tribune editorial: New agreement between SOU and the JPR Foundation protects radio and the Holly Theatre

Mail Tribune September 2, 2012

SOU’s Churchill Hall renovation is almost complete

Mail Tribune August 31, 2012


Big second half lifts soccer team; Dodge and Olson named Players of the Week

Mail Tribune September 4, 2012

Raiders home games will be broadcast on local TV

Daily Tidings August 31, 2012

Full version of print clips

Back from the abyss
The new agreement between SOU, JPR Foundation protects radio and the Holly Theatre
September 02, 2012 2:00 AM
Southern Oregon University and the Jefferson Public Radio Foundation stepped back from the brink and hammered out a new agreement that appears to protect the nation’s most extensive regional public radio network and restart the Holly Theatre restoration. Those are both good things, but they may have come at the expense of Jefferson Square, the proposed relocation of JPR’s studios to downtown Medford.
The new agreement announced last week is a relief to those who feared a dispute between the university and the nonprofit foundation might threaten the very future of public radio in the region and scuttle plans to renovate the historic Holly Theatre into a performing arts center before the project had really gotten off the ground.
The clash over the governance and structure of JPR and its fundraising foundation came after an audit of the JPR Foundation by the office of the Chancellor of Higher Education raised questions about the financial details of the foundation’s plans to renovate the Holly Theatre and move its studios to Medford. The audit also questioned the role of Ron Kramer, who was serving as executive director of the independent, nonprofit foundation and of Jefferson Public Radio, a department of Southern Oregon University, suggesting the dual roles were a conflict of interest. The document also raised concerns that the foundation’s fundraising efforts could compete with those of the SOU Foundation.
SOU President Mary Cullinan dismissed Kramer from his JPR post and he resigned as director of the foundation.
An earlier mediation session resulted in a proposed settlement that would have created a new JPR Foundation board with the majority of members appointed by SOU and community colleges. It also would have transferred ownership of all broadcast licenses, equipment and other assets to a new nonprofit entity.
JPR Foundation board members disagreed with several of the provisions, but SOU threatened the members with individual lawsuits if they didn’t go along. At that point, Gov. John Kitzhaber stepped in, called for a cooling off period and appointed a new mediator for a new round of negotiations. SOU agreed to drop the threat of lawsuits.
The new agreement announced last week creates a new nonprofit entity, Jefferson Live!, to take over operation of the Cascade Theatre and the fundraising for renovating the Holly. The JPR Foundation will own the new entity, but the foundation will raise funds only for the public radio stations. SOU will assume ownership of all the broadcast licenses, but may not sell them without consulting with JPR and the foundation, and any proceeds will go to JPR, not to the university’s general fund. Jeffnet, the Internet service provider that benefits JPR, will remain with the foundation.
The foundation board will be unchanged, and may also serve as the board of the new Jefferson Live!
Work on the Holly now can proceed, but the project has been dealt a serious blow from the uncertainty and delay while the dispute played out. SOU and the University System bear much of the blame for that.
In the end, SOU and the state university system got the separation they wanted between the theater operations and the radio stations, the foundation got to keep its board and its autonomy and JPR got to keep the financial value of its broadcast licenses.
What may have been lost is the plan to develop new studios, which would have been a major contribution to downtown Medford. Steve Nelson, president of the foundation board, has made it clear that Jefferson Square will be of secondary importance while the Holly project proceeds.
The best outcome would have been for the university system to stay out of JPR’s business in the first place. The worst result would have been the first proposed settlement.
The third outcome falls somewhere between those extremes. SOU and the university system should do everything they can to support the new structure and its projects from now on.

Churchill renovation nears completion

Southern Oregon University’s oldest building retrofitted to withstand an earthquake
By Sam Wheeler
for the Mail Tribune
August 31, 2012 2:00 AM
Renovation of Southern Oregon University’s first building, 86-year-old Churchill Hall, is running about two months ahead of schedule and staff should begin funneling back into its top floor by the first week of September, the project’s contractor said.
Workers have gutted the building to its frame, reinforced it with a network of steel columns and girts, added foundation support and are finishing remodeling its interior, said Aaron Ausland, CEO of engineering and construction firm Ausland Group, who’s been working on the project since October.
“We pretty much built an entire new structural skeleton inside the old building,” he said. “Being a seismic renovation and an architectural renovation, it’s been a very complex project, but our team has been very proactive identifying potential problems before they occur.”
With new flooring, walls, electrical wiring, lighting, and windows, the building will be more energy-efficient, and its sturdy new frame makes it less susceptible to earthquake damage, Ausland said.
The entire project is expected to cost about $6.4 million, with direct construction costs totaling about $4.9 million, said Drew Gilliland, SOU director of facilities, management and planning.
“I think we’ve done a great job on the project. It’s been a win-win for both of us,” Gilliland said. “And, we’re always glad to keep the work in the valley with our contractors.”
Oregon Health & Science University will have all of its faculty at SOU consolidated in Churchill’s top floor, and will be first to move back into the building. If things go smoothly, crews could have the project wrapped up in October, Ausland said, allowing President Mary Cullinan and other administrators to move back in, as well as a handful of SOU’s staff who will work from offices on the top floor.
“The goal right now is to get OHSU moved in,” Gilliland said. “We have a few offices and classrooms up there that our staff will use, but I don’t think they will be finished with the work until the end of September.”
Initially, SOU established a timeline for the project to be completed by December.
The Oregon University System, through its deferred maintenance program, contributed $1.3 million to cover the seismic retrofitting, and OHSU, which operates a nursing program at the SOU campus, contributed $500,000.
Another $2.7 million for the project comes from state energy loans and $1.8 million from lottery bonds. Although SOU will not have to pay back the lottery bonds, it will be required to pay back the energy loans.
The faculty members in SOU’s foreign language program, who once worked out of Churchill’s top floor, will eventually move to the second floor of Central Hall, which is where most of the OHSU staff and faculty work. The foreign language program is working out of a manufactured home near Central Hall.
Except for the building’s clearer glass windows, the renovation effort is virtually unnoticeable from outside Churchill.
“On the outside you’d never know what was going on in there, but we’ve been hard at work “… it looks spectacular,” Ausland said.
Reach Ashland Daily Tidings reporter Sam Wheeler at 541-499-1470 or email

Big second half lifts Raiders in women’s soccer

September 04, 2012 2:00 AM
OAKLAND, Calif. — The Southern Oregon offense broke out for four second-half goals as the Raiders defeated Holy Names 5-2 Monday afternoon in nonconference women’s soccer action.
Southern Oregon improves to 3-0-1 with the win, while Holy Names drops to 0-2 this season. The Raiders return to action Thursday with an afternoon road match against Simpson in Redding.
Stacy Hamer led the way for SOU with a pair of goals and added an assist in the win, while Stephanie Carr tallied her fifth goal of the season. Sydney Paulsen and Serena DeChristofaro also scored for the Raiders.
Hamer’s first goal came in the 40th minute when she dug the ball out of the corner and hit a 20-yard bender into the net for the unassisted score. That would be the only goal of the first half, before the teams combined for six scores after the halftime break.
Dodge, Olson earn honors
The Southern Oregon football team won its first-ever Frontier Conference game in decisive fashion Saturday, and Monday a pair of Raiders have become the program’s first Frontier Conference Players of the Week following their performances against Montana Western.
Sophomore quarterback Austin Dodge was named Offensive Player of the Week and senior wide receiver Mike Olson was named Special Teams Player of the Week.
Dodge passed for 347 yards and a pair of touchdowns in the Raiders’ 54-21 victory over the Bulldogs. He completed 26 of 39 pass attempts while sitting most of the fourth quarter in the win, and he also rushed for 19 yards on four carries.
Olson began his senior season with the touchdown trifecta as he reached the end zone on the ground, through the air and on a punt return. He totaled 89 yards on four punt returns, including a 69-yard TD return, and he added 75 receiving yards on three catches and 24 rushing yards on six attempts.
The Raiders, 1-0 on the season, travel to Billings, Mont., next for a conference road matchup against Rocky Mountain Saturday at 1 p.m. MST.

SOU Raiders, KDRV reach TV deal

August 31, 2012 2:00 AM
The Southern Oregon Athletic Department has reached a dead with local ABC affiliate KDRV and webcast company Lyon Productions to broadcast Raider home events during the 2012-13 school year.
The deal will allow SOU games to be broadcast on KDRV’s digital station 12-plus with a new and improved look for all home games that will be carried online thanks to Lyon Productions.
SOU football will debut on KDRV Saturday with a game against Montana-Western at Spiegelberg Stadium. Kick-off is slated for 1:05 p.m.
“This is a very big and important step for us as an athletic department as we try to reach more and more Raider fans in Southern Oregon and Northern California,” SOU athletic director Matt Sayre said. “With the ever-changing world of technology it is important for us to remain at the forefront, and aligning ourselves with KDRV and Lyon Productions accomplishes that.”
KDRV will air all five home football games and four away games live, and the station will also replay the games during the week. They will also air various home volleyball, basketball and wrestling events during the year. SOU is the first Cascade Collegiate Conference school to show live events on a network affiliated station and one of the few NAIA schools in the country to have such an arrangement.
“KDRV is proud of its partnership with Southern Oregon University and is excited to bring even more exclusive, live local sporting events to television,” KDRV Director of Creative Services Bryan Johnson said. “With the addition of SOU Raider football games to the Newswatch 12-plus lineup, we’re able to share a great local schedule of games with our viewers that they just can’t see anywhere else.”
Newswatch 12-plus is available over the air on channel 12.2, channel 291 on Charter Cable, Ashland TV channel 12.2 and on the Northland Cable system at channel 137.
The relationship with Lyon Productions will improve SOU’s online webcasts for football, volleyball, basketball and wresting. The webcasts will now feature multiple cameras, instant replays, commercials and graphics. Games will also be archived for future viewing. Games online can be found at, the official online home for SOU Athletics.