System News

Workers stand ready to place the final steel beam in the Life Sciences Facility Aug. 12. The beam, painted in UAF's school colors, is adorned with the U.S. and Alaska flags, signatures of the iron-worker crew, and a tree meant to bring good luck and future growth. Photo by Todd Paris.

Gamble Names Hostina as General Counsel for UA System

University of Alaska President Pat Gamble announced his intention to appoint long-time Fairbanks attorney Mike Hostina to the position of General Counsel for the University of Alaska System. Hostina will replace retiring General Counsel Roger Brunner in October.

“Finding an attorney and advisor of Roger’s caliber was shaping up to be a very tough task. I’m really pleased that Mike agreed to step into this important role as advisor to the Board of Regents, the Chancellors and to me,” Gamble said. “The fine work that I’ve seen from Mike over the last year leaves no doubt about his strong capability to serve UA well as our legal team leader.”

Hostina has been associate general counsel for the University of Alaska since 2002. He served as the university’s director of labor relations from 1998 to 2002, and as regional director and legal counsel for the State of Alaska Ombudsman’s Office in Fairbanks from 1989 to 1995. He is a 1983 graduate of Temple University Law School.

Hostina said, “It has been a rare pleasure and privilege to work with skilled and dedicated colleagues for an institution that serves such critical human and state needs. I look forward to working more closely with the Board of Regents and President Gamble as they strive to meet the diverse needs of this far-flung state under ever more challenging conditions.”

Hostina is married to local artist Barbara Santora, who teaches at Lathrop High School. They have two children, Caity, a 2008 graduate of UAF, and Morgan, a Justice major at UAF.

The General Counsel serves as the chief legal officer of the Board of Regents, the Statewide Administration and the campuses throughout the university system.

Regents head to state capital for September meeting

The Board of Regents will meet in Juneau Sept. 22-23 to address a large agenda that includes:

  • Reaffirmation of the UAA/UAF Joint Clinical Community Ph.D in psychology;
  • Schematic design approvals for the Wellness Center renewal at Prince William Sound Community College in Valdez; student housing and Career and Technical Education Center construction projects at Kenai Peninsula College; and the Seawolf Community Arena at the University of Alaska Anchorage;
  • Formal project approval for the Mat-Su Valley Center for the Arts and Learning;
  • Resolutions of appreciation for Wendy Redman, Mary Rutherford and Roger Brunner;
  • Revisions to the Prince William Sound Community College mission statement;
  • Approval of norary degree and meritorious service award recipients;
  • Approval of academic degree recipients;
  • And numerous updates and reports.

Board members also will have the first look at FY13 proposed operating and capital budgets, but those budgets aren’t scheduled to come before the board for action until the Nov. 2 meeting in Fairbanks.

The September meeting will include two opportunities for public comment; one at 10 a.m. on Thursday, Sept. 22, and another at 9 a.m. on Friday, Sept. 23. The two-day meeting will take place at the student recreation center on the University of Alaska Southeast’s Auke Lake campus. A community reception with the board will be held from 5:30-7 p.m. Thursday at the Mourant Building.

For more information about the upcoming board meeting, watch for the upcoming news release or check out the Board of Regents’ website at www.alaska.edu/bor for the complete agenda.

Director of Benefits Mike Humphrey accepts new role at UAA

Letter to Statewide staff

Dear UA Colleagues and Friends

I’m excited to share with you that I’ve accepted a position as Executive Officer for UAA Chancellor Tom Case. My last day at Statewide will be Friday, Aug. 26. I’ll begin work in my new job on our beautiful Anchorage campus in early September.

There are so many employees I’ve truly enjoyed working with here at Statewide that it would be impossible to list all of you. However, I’d like to note that working with Erika Van Flein has been a particular highlight of my career overseeing benefits in a rapidly changing environment.  It’s seldom you get to work with someone who is as smart, sharp and confident in his or her own abilities. Looking back over the years, I can’t imagine serving as Director of Benefits without Erika’s help.

During my 18 years here at the UA System, I’ve had the challenge of addressing a wide range of issues that have had a significant impact on faculty, staff and the finances of the university. I believe UA has made progress toward slowing the growth in health plan costs while maintaining a high quality of care and options for our employees. I’ve been especially pleased to work with many of you on our wellness program, which has been transformational for many employees striving toward better health. .

It has been a privilege to serve the University of Alaska as your Director of Benefits and I look forward to working with many of you in my new capacity in the future.

Mike Humphrey

SAA Highlights

The Statewide Administration Assembly held its second meeting of the fiscal year on Aug. 10. The next SAA meeting will be 10 a.m., Wednesday, Sept. 14 in the Sherman Carter conference room. All meetings are open to the public, and statewide workers are encouraged to contact their governance group to address workplace concerns, policies and other matters affecting Statewide staff.

August 10 meeting overview:

  • Introduction of new executives
  • Longevity and Outstanding Employee awards
  • Employee tuition waiver update
  • Staff emeritus
  • Web-based timesheets
  • Benefits updates
  • SAA website
  • Building issues
  • Fire alarm review
  • Holiday projects

For information please read the overview HERE.

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