Prior to 3/5/2008 the newsclips are available in a PDF archive.
News Clips 12/10/2012
GUEST COLUMN: What Charles B. Reed meant for the California State University system
Source: Press-Telegram, 12/7/12
View Original Article
By Dianne F. Harrison, president of California State University, Northridge.
As Charles B. Reed retires this month as chancellor of the 23-campus California State University, I want to pay tribute to both his legacy and character.
My service with Dr. Reed predates my arrival in the CSU in 2006, when he was chancellor of the State University System of Florida and I served as a tenured faculty member and a dean at Florida State University.
This experience has given me unique insight into his outstanding leadership. Above all, I found him to be sincerely caring about students. He is also smart, creative, principled, loyal, passionate, politically savvy and shrewd. I have appreciated his directness even when we disagreed. He can tell stories as a raconteur nonpareil and has a keen sense of humor.
The CSU and the state of California have benefited greatly from Dr. Reed's national and international reputation as an innovator in education and community outreach, and from his commitment to diversity and to assisting traditionally under-served students and all communities.
The qualities and values that have informed Dr. Reed's focus and service are reflected in his record of accomplishment as the CSU chancellor. Since his appointment in 1998, the CSU went from 350,000 enrolled students to 430,000, with a high of 440,000 before state budget reductions.
We now annually award over 95,000 degrees (including 20,000 master's degrees), versus 67,000 in 1998. It is estimated his signature is on the diplomas of more than 1.5 million Florida and California graduates. Among the CSU's 44,000 employees, 16,000 are from traditionally underrepresented groups (that is 36 percent of the CSU workforce versus 27 percent in 1998). The CSU's endowment has also increased by more than 200 percent, from $339 million to $1.02 billion.
While the CSU's remarkable growth under Chancellor Reed's leadership is impressive on its own, he takes particular pride in ensuring access and opportunity for students from traditionally under-served backgrounds and communities. This focus has always been a hallmark of the CSU's mission and reflects his personal values and priorities. The CSU works closely with community organizations to assist Latino, African-American, Asian Pacific Islander, and Native American students and parents, as well as veterans and former foster youth.
During Chancellor Reed's tenure, the number of degrees conferred to Hispanic students increased by 111 percent, to African-Americans by 30 percent, and to Asian-Americans by 50 percent. These achievements are the result of outreach initiatives and programs that Chancellor Reed personally spearheaded, such as the distribution of 3 million copies of "How to Get to College" materials and statewide "Super Sunday" events during which CSU officials personally visit churches in African-American communities to speak about the importance of a college education.
In 2012 alone, the CSU visited 100 churches statewide and spoke to 100,000 students and their families. Chancellor Reed was always present and deeply involved in these efforts. He also worked to ensure that these students - many of them first generation Americans or the first in their families to attend college - had the financial support to enroll and succeed. Last year the CSU granted more than $550 million in State University Grants to approximately 130,000 students, up from $106 million in 1998.
In recent years, as a difficult budget environment has threatened the stability and reputation of California's public higher education systems, Chancellor Reed's directness and strong advocacy for preserving access and quality sometimes led to controversy and animosity - reactions I thought were unfair, as did others who knew and admired him. Through it all, he never wavered or backed down, and remained steadfastly committed to working on behalf of the CSU, its students, and the state of California.
During his tenure, Chancellor Reed shepherded the CSU system through tremendous growth and enrollment demand and then fought to maintain strength and quality in the face of difficult odds. Balancing his tremendous accomplishments against the challenges of significant budget reductions, he leaves behind a strong legacy of leadership of which the people of California should be proud and appreciative. It is a tribute to Dr. Reed's work that the incoming new chancellor of the CSU, Dr. Timothy P. White, looks forward to building on a solid foundation for providing continued access and opportunity for the diverse population of our state.