Washington State Magazine

Spring 2005

Spring 2005

In This Issue...


Baseball is a Family :: We hear about his time with the Padres; about teammates Dave Winfield, Willie McCovey, and Tito Fuentes; how he'd faced Hank Aaron and Johnny Bench and Pete Rose and Joe Morgan; and how a tear of his rotator cuff had brought an end to his major league career.

The tie that binds :: No matter what you want to blame—predatory pricing, vertical integration, foreign competition, globalization, urban sprawl—the fact of the matter is, rural America is packing it in. At least the rural America of our memory or imagination.

{ WEB EXCLUSIVE—Recipe: Stuffed Peppers from the Harrah Café }

{ WEB EXCLUSIVE—Galleries: Washington Communities:Harrah and Pullman }

Where water meets desert :: Among locals, you occasionally hear the word "wasteland" used to describe sagebrush-studded lands that biologists prefer to call native shrub steppe. It's impossible to take such a harsh view when Robert Kent is your guide to the Columbia Basin Wildlife Areas.

{ WEB EXCLUSIVE—Gallery: Where water meets desert :: Photos of the Columbia Basin by Bill Wagner }



:: SEASONS|SPORTS: Meeting the challenge


Cover: Former San Diego Padres pitcher Joe McIntosh '73 and his daughter Molly. Photograph by Robert Hubner.

Eric Falter

Robert Hubner

Erik Falter strives to keep alumni connected

by | © Washington State University

Erik Falter was in his element at the Washington State University Alumni Achievement Award presentation event for Merle Sande last September (see WSM, winter 2004-05, p. 49). Keeping alumni connected with WSU and each other tops Falter's priorities as president of the WSU Alumni Association. He wants his presidency to reflect the association's goals of building membership, developing ways to engage alumni, and enhancing the financial strength of the association.

"We have a system set up with dedicated alumni working with a passion for WSU. The Alumni Association is the easiest and most recognizable way for alumni to stay connected with WSU," he says.

Falter ('90 Bus. Adm.), 37, epitomizes the youth movement afoot in the alumni association.

He grew up in Priest River, Idaho, worked his way through college as night manager of The Coug, wrote hometown releases for the WSU News Bureau, guided campus tours, and volunteered as a student recruiter for the admissions office. In 1994 he volunteered as WSU alumni director for northern California. He and his wife, Laura (Reilly '99 Gen. St./Hum.), established the alumni club in Utah in 2004.

"Erik had that Cougar spirit from the beginning," says Sue Hinz, former editor of WSU's weekly internal newspaper, Bulletin/Calendar. "He has the most positive outlook. . . . He sees the value of everyone and everyone's ideas. He has the enthusiasm to put those ideas in motion. He's just a natural leader."

Forty-five percent of WSU's 175,000 alumni of record have graduated since 1985. Many of these younger alumni are shaping the association's direction as board members.

"You don't have to wait around until you have a ton of money and are 50 years old to get involved," Falter says.

Categories: Alumni | Tags: Alumni Association, Alumni Achievement Award

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