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In Touch 1970s


Ronald R. AriasRonald R. Arias (1971, B.A., kinesiology and physical education) retired in December after nearly 13 years as director of the City of Long Beach Department of Health and Human Services. A 2006 distinguished alumnus of CSULB’s College of Health and Human Services, Arias has been with the city since 1990 and is recognized for his accomplishments in community health education.

Marx Group Advisors in San Rafael named John Nodson (1972, B.S., business administration– marketing) as vice president, responsible for the firm’s work in acquisitions and divestitures. Marx provides strategic consulting for the automotive, commercial vehicle and aftermarket firms.

Preston A. Henne (1973, M.S., engineering) retired as senior vice president of programs, engineering and test for Gulfstream Aerospace Corp. He has been with the firm since 1994 and led teams that developed a variety of aircraft including the new G650.


Thomas L. Gordon (1975, B.A., journalism) is an editor with the Orange County Register and is co-founder with his wife of the Pepper Project (, a charity that sells Kampot pepper from Cambodia to support numerous social and charitable causes in that nation.

Sound Telecom appointed Cheryl L. (McKinney) LaBaw (1977, B.S., community health education) as director of customer relations for the nationwide provider of telephone answering, call center and communication services. She previously spent more than 32 years in customer service-related positions with United Airlines.

Denise Noldon (1977, B.A., psychology; 1991, M.S., education–counseling) is the new president of Contra Costa College in San Pablo. She was a senior administrator at Folsom Lake College and Chabot College and earned a Ph.D. at the University of Maryland at College Park.

The University of Delaware named John E. Sawyer (1977, B.A., psychology), professor of business administration, as interim associate provost for institutional research and effectiveness.

Douglas M. DeGraveThe California American Board of Trial Advocates Chapter (CAL-ABOTA) elected Douglas M. DeGrave (1978, B.A., political science) as its 2013 president. He earned his J.D. degree from Loyola Law School in Los Angeles and is founding partner of the civil law firm Poliquin & DeGrave in Laguna Hills. ABOTA is dedicated to preserving the right to jury trials in civil cases.