Board of Trustees

The Board of Trustees makes policy and provides oversight for the operations of the institution. The Board consists of 11 members, nine appointed by the governor. These nine serve four-year terms, and at least two live in Gunnison County. The other two are elected by university faculty and students, who each elect one non-voting representative to serve on the board. The faculty representative serves a two-year term. The student representative serves a one-year term.

*If you are in search for the BOT meeting minutes, copies of the minutes can be obtained at the President’s Office.

Board Members

Chris Blees, Board of Trustees
Christian W. Blees - Board Chair


Colorado Springs, Colo.

Appointed December 2015 • Term expires December 2019

Chris Blees graduated from Western with a B.A. in Accounting and Recreation & Outdoor Education in 1994. Blees currently serves as President and CEO of BiggsKofford Certified Public Accountants and BiggsKofford Capital Investment Bank, both located in Colorado Springs. In 2003, he expanded the firm and launched an M&A and investment banking practice, now operating as BiggsKofford Capital. Blees serves on the Board of Advisors for the Alliance of Merger & Acquisition Advisors, acts as Treasurer for the Colorado Springs Regional Business Alliance (Chamber), sits on the board of the University of Colorado Colorado Springs Chancellor’s Leadership Council and is co-founder of High Altitude Angel Investors Club. He is a member of the Association of Corporate Growth, Colorado Association of Business Intermediaries, AICPA and the Colorado Society of CPAs. Blees said that the one-on-one attention students receive at Western and its emphasis on hands-on learning set Western apart.

Erich Ferchau - Board of Trustees, Western Colorado University
Erich Ferchau - Board Vice Chair

RE/MAX Community Brokers

Gunnison, Colo.

Re-appointed April 2019 • Term expires 2023

Erich Ferchau graduated from high school in Gunnison, received his undergraduate degree from Western in 1979 and graduated from the University of Georgia with an MBA in Information Services in 1983. Following a career with The Coca-Cola Company in Atlanta, Erich and his family (Beth, Kathryn and Evan) moved back to Gunnison to start their real estate business. Ferchau is the Broker/Owner of RE/MAX Community Brokers in Gunnison and Crested Butte. He served a term on the Gunnison County Planning Commission and is presently a member of the Gunnison County Sage-Grouse Strategic Committee and the City of Gunnison Planning Commission. He believes the ongoing success of the Gunnison community depends on a healthy, vibrant and growing university—and that the success of Western depends on a supportive, engaged and collaborative relationship with the community.

Nancy E. Chisholm

Tyco Retail Solutions

Lakewood, Colo.

Re-appointed December 2016 • Term expires December 2020

Nancy Chisholm graduated from Western with a B.A. in Business Administration in 1990. Chisholm is the Vice President and General Manager of Tyco Retail Solutions—a $1 billion vertical business unit of Tyco. Tyco Retail is a leading global provider of integrated retail performance and security solutions. She has responsibility for sales, manufacturing and operations support for this business throughout the world including North America, EMEA, Asia-Pacific and Latin America. Previously, Chisholm served for three years as Vice President, Global Human Resources for Tyco’s $9 billion Security Solutions division. Chisholm has been recognized internally as a Tyco Chairman’s Award winner and externally as one of Diversity Magazine’s “50 Women Worth Watching.” She has a passion for mentoring and development for early to mid-career professionals, and serves as an Executive Sponsor for Tyco’s “Women’s Growth Network.” Chisholm enjoys skiing, sports and the outdoors with her 18-year-old son, Reid.

Board of Trustees member Aquino G. Gallegos
Aquino G. Gallegos

Costilla County Housing Authority

San Luis, Colo.

Re-appointed March 2018 • Term expires March 2022

Aquino Gallegos graduated from Western in 1982 with a B.S. in Business Administration. Gallegos is the Executive Director of Costilla County Housing Authority in San Luis. He has also served as Costilla County’s Director of Social Services and was employed for more than 20 years by Rocky Mountain SER, which contracts employment and training programs within the state of Colorado. Gallegos is currently Treasurer of the San Luis People’s Ditch (the oldest adjudicated water right in Colorado in 1852) and is a member of the Costilla County Natural Resource Conservation District Board. Gallegos said he chose to attend Western because it allowed him to combine a great education with his passion for the outdoors. After graduating, he returned to San Luis to manage his family’s property, a fifth-generation Colorado Centennial ranch that he and his brother continue to operate.

Keith Kennedy

iCardiac Technologies

Monument, Colo.

Appointed December 2016 • Term expires December 2020

Keith Kennedy graduated from Western in 1990 with a B.S. in Business Administration. He is the Principal of Mobile Health at Medidata Solutions. Kennedy works with Fortune 500 pharmaceutical companies providing respiratory and cardiac safety diagnostic equipment used in clinical research. He has worked in the pharmaceutical and medical device industry for almost 20 years. Kennedy has published several industry publications and previously served on the Colorado Association of Family Physicians Board. In addition to igniting his passion for business, his time at Western also deepened his love for skiing and cycling, which he still enjoys to this day. Kennedy married his college sweetheart, Donna Anderson, in 1990. They have two wonderful children: Kelsey, a graduate of Colorado State University, and Dakota, a student at Lewis & Clark College in Portland, Ore.

Jim Oates, Western Board of Trustees
James G. Oates

Gunnison, Colo.

Re-appointed March 2018 • Term expires March 2022

James (Jim) G. Oates graduated from Ohio State University in 1966 with a Bachelor of Science degree. Upon graduation Oates joined the Leo Burnett Advertising Agency in Chicago where he became President. Oates managed client relationships with some of the world’s largest consumer-based companies, including Philip Morris, Coca-Cola, McDonald’s and General Motors. He was a board member of the American Association of Advertising Agencies and the Advertising Council, where he served as Chairman. Oates was also a member of the Advisory Board for the Kellogg Graduate School of Management; served as a regional co-director of the “Affirm Thy Friendship” capital campaign for Ohio State University; was a member of the task force on athlete employment for the USOC; and was a board member for the Freedom Foundation. In the Gunnison Valley, he participated as a board member to the Crested Butte Music Festival and the Gunnison County 4-H Committee. He also served as a member of the Board of Directors of the Anderson Ranch Art Center in Snowmass. He co-founded and is currently a Manager of the Gunnison River Partnership. 

Jim Pribyl
James C. Pribyl

Public policy consulting

Frisco, Colo.

Appointed April 2019 • Term expires 2023

James Pribyl provides clients government public policy management services specializing in natural resources, communications and technology. During his 35 years in the telecommunications industry, Pribyl served in state and federal government affairs positions at Northwestern Bell Telephone, US West Communications and MCI Communications. He capped his career as the chief federal government affairs executive at Level 3 Communications, a global internet network carrier based in Colorado. An accomplished political and policy strategist, Pribyl has served as Chief of Staff to a governor and has worked for two U.S. senators. He has consulted on election campaigns for governor, U.S. Senate and president. Pribyl serves on the Board of Directors of Conservation Colorado, the state’s leading environmental advocacy organization. A graduate of the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minn., Pribyl is a former U.S. Air Force officer. He and his wife, Pat Heinz-Pribyl, a former public school educator and principal, live in Frisco and Louisville. They have three daughters and six grandchildren.

Board of Trustees Member Pamela A. Shaddock, J.D.
Pamela A. Shaddock

Weld County

Greeley, Colo.

Appointed December 2015 • Term expires December 2019

Pamela Shaddock has a Juris Doctor from the University of Colorado and a Bachelor of Science in Education from the University of Nebraska. Shaddock is an attorney and has resided in Colorado for over 30 years. In 2003, she was elected to an at-large seat on the Greeley City Council; thereafter, she served as the Regional Director in 11 Northeastern Colorado counties for U.S. Senator Mark Udall. Shaddock is committed to the betterment of Colorado’s rural communities as reflected by her experiences as President of the Weld County Bar Association and Co-Chairperson of statewide Colorado Rural Legal Services. Her background in the nonprofit arena includes terms as Chairperson of Weld County United Way and of Hospice and Palliative Care of Northern Colorado. She represented the City of Greeley on its Downtown Development Authority and on the board of Upstate Colorado. Shaddock is a dedicated advocate for the special place that is Western.

Photo of Richard Todd
Richard Todd

Innovest Portfolio Solutions

Denver, Colo.

Appointed March 2018 • Term expires March 2022

Richard Todd graduated from Western with a B.A. in Business Finance in 1983. Todd is CEO and co-founder of Innovest Portfolio Solutions. He has more than 30 years of experience in investment consulting. Todd has been named as one of America’s top 100 independent investment advisors by Barron’s and was selected a 2017 outstanding CEO by ColoradoBiz magazine. Prior to establishing Innovest, he was First Vice President of Investment Management Consulting Group of Dain Bosworth and Managing Director of RPRime Services—the consulting department at Rauscher Pierce Refsnes. He earned the Certified Investment Management Consultant (CIMC) designation from the Institute for Investment Management Consultants Association. Todd appreciates the beautiful setting of campus and the personalized education students receive at Western. During his free time, he enjoys spending time with his children, playing golf and hunting.

Max Oldham
Max Oldham

Western Colorado University (Student)

Gunnison, Colo.

Appointed July 2019 • Term expires May 2020

Max Merrick (Oldham) entered 2019-20 as a junior at Western, studying Politics & Government with an emphasis in Pre-Law. Merrick, currently serving as the President for the Student Government Association, is extensively involved with numerous entities across campus including but not limited to the Multicultural Center, LEAD/Orientation, Athletics and the DEII Committee. In May 2019, Merrick was presented with a Resolution from the City of Gunnison for bettering the “health, welfare and safety of [Gunnison] citizens,” after serving alongside the city council the year prior. His mission as Western’s Student Body President is for all Mountaineers to “Connect, Challenge, and Change,” all the while embracing their diversities. Merrick says he strives to be the body that makes everybody feel like a somebody.

Anthony Miccoli
Headshot of Western Professor Anthony Miccoli

Western Colorado University (Faculty)

Gunnison, Colo.

Appointed July 2019 • Term expires May 2021

Anthony Miccoli received his B.A. from Pace University in 1994, earned his Ph.D. from the University at Albany and joined Western in the fall of 2005. During his time at Western, Miccoli has taught courses in English, Communication and Philosophy, and he has directed the Philosophy program since its re-launch in 2007, overseeing all curricular, programmatic and administrative aspects of the minor. In his career at Western, Miccoli has served as faculty senator, academic policies representative and adviser to Spectrum, and he has served on several search committees–most recently as a search committee chair. Miccoli also successfully chaired the “Preparing for the Future” subcommittee during Western’s Self-study in 2011 and subsequent reaccreditation in 2012. In addition to over 22 years of teaching experience, Miccoli is an internationally recognized scholar of posthumanist philosophy, new materialism, postphenomenology and continental philosophy. His 2010 book, “Posthuman Suffering and the Technological Embrace,” anthology chapter (“Posthuman Topologies: Thinking through the Hoard” in “Design, Mediation, and the Posthuman”) and journal articles have been cited in over two dozen books, dissertations and master’s theses.

July 13, 2018 (Seminar)

Proposed Agenda
July 13, 2018
8:00 a.m. – 2:30 p.m.
Elevation Hotel, Mt. Crested Butte

8:00 I. Approval of the Agenda

8:05 II. Executive Session

Description: To receive legal advice in accordance with §24-6- 402(3)(a)(II), C.R.S.                                                                              

9:30 Break                       

9:45 III. Discussion Topics

A. Capital campaign (Kellogg Organization to participate)
B. Marketing and Enrollment update
C. 2018-2023 Strategic Plan and Implementation Plan

12:00 Break / Working Lunch on discussion topics

1:30 IV. Action Items

A. 2018-2023 Strategic Plan
B. FY2019-20 capital construction and controlled maintenance request

2:30 V. Adjournmen

October 4, 2018

Proposed Meeting Agenda
October 4, 2018
12:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.
University Center, Western Colorado University

12:00  I. Approval of the Agenda

12:05  II. Executive Session

Description: To receive legal advice in accordance with §24-6- 402(3)(a)(II), C.R.S.

12:45  III. Approval of Minutes for the Board of Trustees Meetings of May 4, 2018, June 11, 2018, June 15, 2018 and July 13, 2018.

12:50 IV. Action Items

  1. Revised 2018-19 Board of Trustees meeting schedule
  2. Affirmative Action Program
  3. Roll-call vote on support for W.A. “Tex” Moncrief, Jr. petroleum geology program per Rady agreement
  4. Proposed curriculum changes for 2019-20
  5. FY2018-19 current funds budget amendment
  6. Foundation MOU
  7. Personnel action and information items

2:00  Break

2:15 V.  Discussion Topics

A. Project Leo update
B. Community housing update
C. Western 2017-18 Administrative Annual Report- Draft

3:45 VI.  Written reports

A. FY2017-18 final student enrollment report
B. Financial and capital construction report
C. Organizational chart
D. Campus updates                       

4:00 VII.  Oral Reports

A.Board Chair
B. President
C. Student Trustee
D. Faculty Trustee
E. Faculty Senate Chair
F. Foundation Executive Director  

4:55 VIII.  Public Comment

5:00 IX.  Adjournment

October 9, 2018

Proposed Special Meeting Agenda
October 9, 2018
9:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.
Taylor 325, Western Colorado University

I.  Approval of the Agenda

II. Action Items

A. Curriculum Changes
B. Western/Foundation MOU

III. Adjournment

November 8, 2018

Proposed Meeting Agenda
of the
Ad Hoc Committee on Housing of the Board of Trustees
November 8, 2018
8:30 a.m. - 9:30 a.m.
Taylor Hall 325, Western Colorado University

I.  Selection of Chair

II.  Review of Agenda

III.  Discussion Items

A. Brief history of housing issues
B. Considerations about why housing is important
C.  New business regarding housing
D.  Financial ratios
E.  Foundation thoughts
F.  Partnership options
G.  Additional criteria
H.  Future meeting(s)
I.   Announcements

IV. Adjournment

November 27, 2018

Proposed Meeting Agenda
of the
Ad Hoc Committee on Housing of the Board of Trustees

November 27, 2018
8:30 a.m. – 9:30 a.m.
Taylor Hall 325, Western Colorado University
Phone # 1.866.899.4679 - Access Code – 662.049.845

I. Approval of Minutes

II. Consensus items

III. Review of Agenda

IV. Discussion items

A. Items not yet covered from prior agenda, if any
B. New business regarding housing
C. Foundation thoughts
D. Partnership options
E. RFQ/RFP Selection Framework (priorities and criteria)
F. Recommendations to the Board of Trustees

V. Public input

VI. Future meetings

VII. Announcements

VIII. Adjournment

December 13, 2018

December 13, 2018
10:00 a.m. to 3 p.m. 
University Center, Western Colorado University

10:00               I.  Approval of the Agenda

      10:05               II.  Executive Session
                                   Description: To receive legal advice in accordance with §24-6- 402(3)(a)(II), C.R.S. and to consider personnel matters in accordance with §24-6-402(3)(b)(I), C.R.S.

11:00               III.  Approval of Minutes for the Board of Trustees Meetings of October 4, 2018 and October 9, 2018.

       11:05               IV.  Action Items

                                   A. Personnel Action and Information Items
                                   B. Western 2017-18 Administrative Annual Report-Final and Executive Evaluation
                                   C. Assumption of Western Colorado University Foundation Debt
                                   D. Appointment of Ex-Officio Foundation Board Member
        12:00                    Lunch Break

  12:15               V.  Discussion Topics
                              A. FY2017-18 Financial and Compliance Audit
                              B. Report from the Ad-Hoc Committee on Housing
                              C. Project Leo Update
                              D. Capital Campaign Update

   2:00                 VI.  Written reports
                                 A. Department of Higher Education Budget Request
                                 B. 2019-20 Board of Trustees Meeting Schedule-Draft
                                 C. Marketing and Recruitment Report
                                 D. Financial and Capital Construction Report
                                 E. Organizational Chart
                                 F. Campus Updates                 

    2:15                 VII.  Oral Reports
                                 A. Board Chair
                                 B. Student Trustee
                                 C. Faculty Trustee
                                 D. Faculty Senate Chair
                                 E. Foundation Executive Director
                                 F. President

    2:55                 VIII.  Public Comment

    3:00                 IX.  Adjournment

February 7, 2019


Proposed Meeting Agenda

February 7, 2019
10:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Warwick Hotel, Denver, Colorado

I. Approve the Agenda

II. Executive Session
                           Description: To receive legal advice in accordance with §24-6- 402(3)(a)(II), C.R.S. and to consider personnel                                     matters in accordance with §24-6-402(3)(b)(I), C.R.S.

III. Approval of Minutes for the Board of Trustees Meetings of December 13, 2018.

IV. Discussion Topics
                          A. Tuition and Fees Overview
                          B. FY2019-20 Initial Budget Assumptions: E&G Fund
                          C. Project Leo
                          D. Capital Campaign

Break (Working Lunch)

V. Action Items
                          A. Personnel Action and Information Items
                          B. Institutional Rebranding
                          C. FY2019-20 Tuition, Fees, Room and Board
                          D. FY2019-20 Board of Trustees Meeting Schedule
                          E. Proposed Curriculum Changes for 2019-20:
                                     a. New B.S. Degree Program in Nutritional Science
​                                     b. New Writing Certificates: Writing, Professional Writing
​                                     c. New Emphases in Biology: Comprehensive Pre-Physical Therapy Emphasis; Comprehensive 3+2 Health                                             Sciences Emphasis leading to a Master of Science in High Altitude Exercise Physiology
​                                     d. New Comprehensive 3+2 Environmental Emphasis in Psychology leading to a Master in Environmental                                               Management
​                                     e. New Comprehensive 3+2 Emphases in Public History leading to either a Master in Environmental                                                         Management or a Master in Gallery Management and Exhibits Specialization
​                                     f. New Comprehensive 3+2 Emphasis in Art History leading to a Master in Gallery Management and Exhibits                                          Specialization
​                                     g. New Emphases in the Graduate Program in Creative Writing: Publishing, Nature Writing
​                                     h. New Humanities and Diversity Minor
​                                     i. New K-12 Physical Education Minor

VI. Written Reports
                          A. Marketing and Recruitment Report
                          B. Financial and Capital Construction Report
                          C. Organizational Chart
                          D. Campus Updates

VII. Oral Reports
                          A. Foundation Executive Director
                          B. Student Trustee
                          C. Faculty Trustee
                          D. Faculty Senate Chair
                          E. Board Chair
                          F. President

VIII. Public Comment

IX. Adjournment

March 28, 2019

Proposed Meeting Agenda

March 28, 2019
10:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
University Center, Western Colorado University

I. Approval of the Agenda

II. Executive Session

III. Approval of Minutes for the Board of Trustees meeting of February 7, 2019.

IV. Action Item

  1. Personnel Action and Information Items
  2. Proposed Curriculum Changes for 2019-20:
    1. New Comprehensive 3+2 Emphasis in Business Administration leading to an Outdoor Industry MBA
    2. New Comprehensive 3+2 Emphasis in Business Administration leading to a Master’s in Environmental Management
    3. New Web Design & Development Minor in both Art and Computer Science
    4. New Sales Minor in Business Administration
    5. New Business Analytics Minor in Business Administration
    6. New Business Law Minor in Business Administration
  3. Naming of the New Fleet Maintenance Garage

Break/ Working Lunch

V. Discussion topics

  1. Fiduciary Training by Attorney General’s Office
  2. Institutional Budgeting and FY2019-20 Draft Current Fund Budgets
  3. Capital Campaign

VI. Written reports

  1. Faculty and Staff Salary Report
  2. Marketing and Recruitment Report
  3. Campus Updates
  4. Organization Charts

VII. Oral Reports

  1. Foundation Executive Director
  2. Student Trustee
  3. Faculty Trustee
  4. Faculty Senate Chair
  5. Legislative Update
  6. Board Chair
  7. President        

VIII. Public Comment

IX. Adjournment

May 10, 2019

Proposed Meeting Agenda

May 10, 2019
9:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.
University Center, Western Colorado University

9:00  I.  Approval of the Agenda

9:05  II. Executive Session

Description: To receive legal advice in accordance with §24-6- 402(3)(a)(II), C.R.S.

10:05  III.  Approval of Minutes for the Board of Trustees Meetings of March 28, 2019.

10:10  IV.  Discussion Topics

  1. Comprehensive Campaign
  2. Graduate Programs
  3. Music Program

12:00 Lunch (Joining us will be the newly tenured faculty and the Rocky Mountain Investment Challenge Champions.)

12:30  V.  Action Items

  1. Election of Officers for 2019-20
  2. FY2019-20 Current Fund Budgets
  3. FY2020-21 Capital, IT and Controlled Maintenance Requests
  4. Personnel Action and Information Items

1:20  VI.  Written Report

  1. Enrollment Report
  2. Organizational Chart
  3. Campus Updates
  4. Foundation Update

1:25  VII.  Oral Reports

  1. Student Trustee
  2. Faculty Trustee
  3. Faculty Senate Chair
  4. Legislative Update
  5. Board Chair
  6. President

1:55  VIII.  Public Comment

2:00  IX.  Adjournment

May 31, 2019

The Western Colorado University Board of Trustees does not have an independent agenda for this occasion but nonetheless gives notice pursuant to Section 24-6-402(2)(a and c), C.R.S. that two or more Trustees may be in attendance for the signing of Western's name simplification bill at 2 p.m. at the State Capitol. No formal Board action will be taken.

June 24, 2019

Proposed Meeting Agenda

June 24, 2019
9:00 a.m. - 9:30 a.m.
Taylor Hall 325, Western Colorado University

9:00 I. Approval of the Agenda

9:05 II. Action Items

                A. University Acquisition of Foundation Buildings

9:25 III. Public Comment

9:30 IV. Adjournment

July 11, 2019

Proposed Agenda

July 11, 2019
2:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Elevation Hotel, Mt. Crested Butte

2:00 I. Approval of the Agenda

2:05 II. Executive Session

Description: To receive legal advice in accordance with §24-6- 402(3)(a)(II), C.R.S.                                                                                                                                    

3:00 III. Action Items

A. FY2020-21 Capital Construction and Controlled Maintenance Request
B. Controlled Maintenance Contract for Roofing Projects
C. Freedom of Expression Policy

4:00 Break

4:15 IV. Discussion Topics

A. Overview of Western/CU Partnership Program
B. Faculty Housing Update

4:55 V. Public Comment

5:00 VI. Adjournment

July 12, 2019

Revised Proposed Agenda

July 12, 2019
8:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.
Elevation Hotel, Mt. Crested Butte

8:00 I. Approval of the Agenda                                                                                                                            

8:05 II. Discussion Topics

A. Comprehensive Campaign
B. Campus Updates
C. University Outcomes
D. University Budget Prioritization

10:00 III. Conversation with State Representatives McLachlan and McCluskie

10:30 IV. Discussion Topics Continued

11:30 Lunch

12:00 V. Discussion Topics Continued

1:55 VI. Public Comment

2:00 VII. Adjournment