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Posts tagged: ron nilson

NIC’s Wood Calls Foul On Meeting

Item: Trustee Christie Wood calls foul on NIC meeting/Maureen Dolan, Coeur d'Alene

More Info:  A North Idaho College trustee is questioning the legality of a board meeting held earlier this month, and is calling for a motion passed as a result of that meeting to be rescinded. Christie Wood has asked that the board members, when they meet next week, consider canceling the motion made by Ron Nilson and seconded by Todd Banducci. The item is on the agenda for the board's regular monthly meeting on Wednesday. “We often talk about being open and transparent and this was non-transparent,” Wood said. “There was no opportunity for the board to have input.

Question: Do you agree with the concerns raised by Trustee Wood?

My 2 Cents: Gookin, Nilson Lead Way

Gotta give a H/T to Councilman Dan Gookin and NIC Trustee Ron Nilson for their enthusiastic reaction to a possible events center being built at Riverstone. During a joint meeting of the City Council and NIC trustee board, Gookin and Nilson said — on “Woody TV” Channel 19 — that an events center would benefit the community as well as the college. Also, both said that the proposed events center should be built large enough to handle events like state high school football championships that are now being lost to Moscow and Pocatello, which have domed stadiums. Gookin was optimistic that voters would pass a bond (that could be floated after creation of a Recreation District) for an events center if they were informed properly re: the benefits. Nilson, who was instrumental in the passage of the bonds to build KTEC in Rathdrum, agreed. However, both balked when the specter of the Lake City Development Corp. was raised to provide some funding. All at the meeting agreed that NIC athletic/events facilities are outdated. Christiansen Gym was built in 1944. A good example of the restrictions caused by poor facilities is the 2014 national NJCAA wrestling tournament that NIC will host — in Spokane/DFO.

Question: I support the idea of a $12M-$15M events center that would attract events here. Also, I think the support of Gookin and Nilson is important for this idea to find traction. What do you think?

NIC Flyers Offer Questionable ‘Facts’

All three Reagan Republican candidates attempting to take over the North Idaho College Board of Trustees were parroting the party line that NIC taxes have soared over the past five years. They never mentioned, of course, that enrollment has soared during that time and that the current board of trustees had the foresight to purchase adjacent land for further expansion. Two flyers hit my mailbox this weekend. One touting Paul Matthews and Todd Banducci, the other, their sidekick in the takeover attempt, Ron Nilson. In the Matthews-Banducci flyer, the challengers made the claim that NIC taxes have gone up a whopping 73 percent. And this: “If divided by the population of Kootenai County, it means almost $600 in new property taxes for every family of four.” Which leads me to believe that someone's telling a whopper here. My NIC taxes have gone up a grand total of $15 in five years.


Nilson has $12,500 For Trustee Race

In his race for the open Trustee Seat C on the North Idaho College Board of Trustees, Ron Nilson of Ground Force has raised $8001 an loaned himself $4539. Nilson filed his 7-day, pre-election campaign finance report with the county clerk's office ahead of today's 5 o'clock deadline. In the latest reporting period, Nilson raised $1950, including $500 donations from Greg Gervais and David Bobbit. To date, Nilson has spent $6787. Nilson spent $1805 with Reagan Republican president Ron Lahr's Strategery Group during this reporting period. The Coeur d'Alene Tribe donated $1000 to Nilson during the last reporting period. You can read his latest campaign finance statement here and here. Dean Haageson, who is also running for the seat being vacated by Trustee Ron Vieselmeyer, hasn't turned in his campaign finance statement yet. Others in the race who have turned in their reports include: Vickie Ambrosetti here, Gary Coffman here, James Ruch here, and Fritz Widenhoff here.

DFO: Incumbents Judy Meyer and Mic Armon have turned in their reports. But there opponents haven't. I'll post those reports here when they're all in.

Nilson Wants NIC Trustee Spot

Ron Nilson said he's running for a seat on the North Idaho College Board of Trustees because the community's future leaders are its children, and their success relies on the quality of the education they receive and how well they are taught to maximize the use of their skills as they move forward. Nilson, 60, is running for election to Seat C on the NIC board. Ron Vieselmeyer, who currently holds that position, is not seeking re-election. “I support Joe Dunlap, the new president of NIC, and his efforts, and I am committed to working with him to build a bridge between the private sector and the college,” Nilson said. A Coeur d'Alene resident, Nilson is president and CEO of Ground Force Worldwide, a Post Falls-based multinational company that manufacturers mining equipment. He has lived in Kootenai County for 12 years/Maureen Dolan, Coeur d'Alene Press. More here.

Other Press trustee profiles

Question: Do you think Nilson will play well together with other NIC trustees, if he is elected but other two challengers on his Reagan Republican ticket aren't?

Christie: Nilson & Co. Have Agenda

Christie Wood (re: Judy & Ron chat at NIC event): udy is a class act. I wish to have her grace someday. I am hoping she will eventually rub off on me. I tend to call people on being insincere so it is unlikely you will see me chatting it up with Ron. I say this but wish to take nothing away from the credit he deserves for all of his charitable contributions in the community. But I believe Ron has a clear agenda to change the direction of the college and that is why he is running. The contrast is when I ran for the board it was to give back to the community, and work on behalf of a college that brought such positive change to my life. I am deeply concerned that NIC has become the next pawn in the Reagan Republican chess game. Nilson, Mathews and Banducci are their hopeful “game changers.” I am well aware that we have many talented citizens that can fill our board positions. None of us expect to be lifetime trustees. In this election however, we have candidates running that I believe have a do harm agenda all in a quest for power, and to promote their ideology. More below.

Question: What do you think of Christie's comments that the three Reagan Republican-endorsed candidates have an agenda to change North Idaho College?

Reagan Repub Trio Forum No-Shows

If I wrote a “Cheers & Jeers” column, like Marty Trillhaase's in the Lewiston Tribune, I'd give jeers to the three North Idaho College trustee challengers endorsed by the county Reagan Republicans who missed the Kootenai County Democratic Club luncheon at noon today — Todd Banducci, Paul Matthews & Ron Nilson. Is it possible that all three have legitimate excuses not to attend this important forum — one of two scheduled this fall? (They were attending Kootenai County “Women In Red” luncheon featuring First Lady Lori Otter.) Are they afraid of Democrats? This underscores the notion that the Reagan Republicans have introduced a poisonous partisan element into these nonpartisan races. NIC trustees are suppose to represent all. The. College. District. Patrons — not just a subset of the local Kootenai County GOP. F'shame. And a H/T to the five candidates who attended, introduced themselves and provided their vision for the future of North Idaho College: Trustee Judy Meyer (Seat A), Trustee Mic Armon (Seat B), and Seat C challengers Fritz Widenhoff, Gary Coffman and Dean Haagenson. Two other challengers who failed to attend were James W. (Jim) Ruch and Vickie Ambrosetti.

Wiseguy: Nilson, Matthews and Banducci were at the Kootenai Republican Women’s “Women in Red ” Lunch at the CDA INN during the “debate.” I suspect they would attend this event by an organization whose membership supports them (there was a Powerpoint display on their behalf) as opposed to an ambush by the Kootenai Democrat Party — who have already (before the debate) endorsed their opponents Meyer, Armon and Hagenson.

Question: Wiseguy points out that Nilson, Matthews & Banducci were at a Kootenai County GOP “Women In Red” luncheon. Is that more important than a debate featuring your challengers, including the incumbent trustees at a Democratic luncheon — one of two scheduled debates this fall?

Reagan Repubs Target NIC Board

The KCRR officially endorsed the following candidates for North Idaho College Board of Trustees:

Seat A, Paul Matthews
Seat B, Todd Banducci
Seat C, Ron Nilson

KCRR President Ron Lahr explained, “Our conservative Board of Directors looks for qualified conservative candidates who will be effective in office.” “The current NIC Board of Trustees have raised tax rates in Kootenai County by 107% since 2007. Kootenai County deserves a conservative change and these three candidates can provide it” Lahr said. Lahr also said “we believe that these highly qualified NIC Trustee Candidates will work to spend our tax money in a fiscally responsible way that really helps students as well as taxpayers.” Full news release here.


Duane: Nilson’s Good For Community

Duane Rasmussen: I have known for a long time that Ron Nilson has core values that a real Christians can respect. I am afraid that too many on this blog have been so absorbed in partisan bickering that they find it difficult to believe that some people try to do the right thing just because it is the right thing to do. Although there was an article written about Ron Nilson’s contribution to those less fortunate I did not see him promoting himself. Our Community needs more people like Ron Nilson.

DFO: I agree with Duane to a point here. Love him or hate him, Ron Nilson has done something that's thisclose to great, in offering his warehouse for a warming center for the homeless. He didn't have to do that. Also, Nilson deserves a H/T for his role in helping pass the Kootenai Technical Education Campus during hard times. I wouldn't want to see him in elected office, given his intense personality. But he is good for the community. His detractors here should admit that.

‘Crazy Love’ Leads To New Shelter

“Crazy Love.” That's the name of the book organizers say inspired a plan to start a new warming center for the homeless in Post Falls that opened Monday night. “No matter what you do to show you love people, you can never really do enough,” said Tom Hamilton, plant manager at Ground Force Manufacturing. The Post Falls company owned by Ron Nilson is donating use of a 4,000-square-foot warehouse at 6001 Seltice Way. It will have heat, lights, a kitchen, bathrooms, tables and chairs. It will be open daily 7 p.m. to 7 a.m. at least through February. Most important, it will provide a nightly shelter for the homeless from North Idaho's cold, wind, rain, snow and ice, said Patty McGruder, homeless outreach worker with the Dirne Community Health Center/Bill Buley, Coeur d'Alene Press. More here. H/T: JimmyMac.

DFO: Please join me in giving a hat tip to one of our own here at HucksOnline, Tom Hamilton, and his boss, Ron Nilson, for reaching out to the homeless in this terrific way.

Factoid: Wood, Howard Won Post Falls

An interesting little factoid among all the election statistics that flooded us Tuesday night & Wednesday morning involved the North Idaho College elections. Seems Christie Wood & Ken Howard both won the Post Falls precincts. Christie swept all the Post Falls precincts. And Ken won all but two of them. Before the election, there was some hubbub that Post Falls was clamoring for a change on the North Idaho College Board of Trustees. And that opponents Robert Ketchum (former college work-force training director) and hard-charging Ron Nilson (CEO of Groundforce Manufacturing), who ran as a ticket, were favorite sons in Post Falls.

JT: Nilson Is Mover/Shaker, No Hero

JT: In a thread yesterday Lizard_People stated, “Ron Nilson was a solid candidate, and is a great American hero.” Solid candidate? yes. great American hero? I don’t think so. There are many complimentary words which could be used to describe Ron Nilson - “successful businessman”, “volunteer”, “mover”, “shaker”, “Vo-Tech advocate” - but, to me, “hero” is not one of them. To me a hero is one who, at significant risk to his/her own person or life, acts to protect or rescue others. I think of those who run into burning buildings, battlefield actions, etc. It seems the American cultural definition of hero has changed, becoming little more than an individual who will stand on some principle. Is that it? I have also heard of young children who dial ‘911’ leading to a rescue referred to as heroes. They did a good thing, learned well, absolutely. But hero? What, today, makes a hero?

Question: Do we use the word ‘hero’ too loosely today? Who is your hero?

NIC Trustee Q-and-A Has Hart Query

I just returned from the noon luncheon of the Kootenai County Democratic Club for NIC trustee candidates, where Norm Gissel asked about a hypothetical situation that was disallowed by moderator Mary Lou Reed. Who didn’t think it was relevant to the trustee races. But candidate Ron Nilson answered it anyway. In the hypothetical, Norm asked the 4 candidates what they would do about an individual who stole trees that supported children’s education. Nilson said: “No way should anyone enter public land & take timber that belongs to our kids.” Rep. Phil Hart’s name wasn’t mentioned once. But everyone knew who Norm & Ron were talking about.

All 4 NIC Wannabes Back Corridor

All 4 candidates for the North Idaho College Board of Trustees promised to support the development of the NIC education corridor. When the question was presented to him, Ron Nilson  answered simply “yes” when asked if he supported the corridor. “I don’t have horns and a tail,” he said. “I support the education corridor. But I don’t support going forward without a plan.” When opponent Ken Howard explained that a plan has been in place for years for infrastructure and that it will continue to evolve with public input, Nilson responded that “there’s a difference between a well-defined plan and a concept.” Robert Ketchum, Nilson’s running mate, said the purchase of the education corridor is final. At this point, “no action could resist” the corridor. Incumbent Christie Wood said she’s committed to developing the corridor because NIC is landlocked and experiencing “tremendous growth.”

DFO: I attended the debate and posted this to ensure that every candidate is on the record supporting the Education Corridor. The property is too precious to the future of our community college and higher-education opportunities in the community to allow this specific question to go unanswered.

Phaedrus: Bulldozer To Replace Logo

Phaedrus: I’m at a loss to figure out why the voc-tech crowd wants to replace Christie Wood. Herb, it’s personal. Robert Ketchum was let go by NIC, the Trustees approved of that action. Ron Nilson’s vo-tech gravy train was disrupted and Ron Nilson belongs to the “My way or the Highway” school of thinking, he is unwilling (perhaps incapable) of seeing another point of view. So he recruits (sponsors?) Ketchum to run. And despite leading the governing board of KTEC he also wants to have input into the governing board of NIC. If Nilson wins, I hear that NIC’s new colors will be yellow and black and the Cardinal logo will be replaced by a bulldozer.

Question: Do you think North Idaho College has a good balance between academic classes and vo-tech/pro-tech ones?

Brand X Endorses Nilson, Ketchum

(Ron) Nilson, pictured, and (Robert) Ketchum stand apart because they are committed to helping students in credit and non-credit classes reach their full potential not just intellectually, but economically. They understand that at the end of the educational line, if the graduate doesn’t have a good job, the education probably doesn’t have good value. We’re convinced Ketchum and Nilson will expand and improve relationships within the community and at the state level. Both have earned the respect of Idaho’s state and federal officials, so when they talk about NIC’s needs, those holding the keys to resources will listen/Mike Patrick, Coeur d’Alene Press Editorial Board. More here.

Question: Agree/disagree with the endorsement?


McGruber: Students Are Customers

McGruber: Watch the forum unfiltered like I did for a better feel for the exchanges. And why is it odd to refer to the students as customers of the college? They determine what courses have value by what courses they pay to study. Doesn’t that make them customers? And isn’t a career or job the ultimate goal of getting higher education? Unless of course you’re going to be a perennial student or aspire to a career in acedemia.

Question: What do you make of the concept that college students are customers?


Phaedrus: A Community Of Welders?

Re: North Idaho College trustee debates: Nilson versus Howard/Hucks Online

Phaedrus: Because Nilson did not go to college he seems to have a chip on his shoulder and is not just in favor of pro-tech education, but is actually against non-tech higher education. Students go to college for an education, not just jobs; if it was up to Ron we’d have a community of welders and mechanics and nothing else.We need pro-tech education, it’s good for the community, but it shouldn’t be the sole purpose of our local college. I fear with Nilson and Ketchum it will become their sole focus.

Question: Does North Idaho College need to bolster its pro-tech program?

Questions For NIC Trustees Anyone?

Luke Malek & Alison McArthur of the Kootenai County Young Professionals are looking for questions to ask North Idaho College trustee candidates at a televised forum from 6 to 7:30 Monday at Post Falls City Hall. I plan to live-blog the event, which will feature separate debates between, first, Christie Wood and Robert Ketchum, and then Ron Nilson and Ken Howard. I’ll forward the questions to Alison by 10 a.m. Monday. Luke will serve as moderator of the event.

Question: Do you have a question you’d like to see answered by NIC trustee candidates?

At Least He Didn’t Call Her ‘Cupcake’

At OpenCDA, the HBO Commenter Formerly Known As DanG offers his two picks for North Idaho College Board of Trustees: Ron Nilson and Robert Ketchum. He states that the two will be able to unmask the happy face that NIC displays to the community when beneath the surface there’s all sorts of skullduggery going on. Then, he mumbles something about graduation rates and that lawsuit over the Education Corridor lease-purchase agreement (that Judge Mitchell tossed and now is before Idaho Supreme Court on appeal). Seems DanG believes Nilson and Ketchum will put an end to the scam by big developers and LCDC to line their buddies’ pockets in development of the education corridor. DanG believes Nilson will win but doubts that Ketchum can beat Wood because “there are too many doofi in this county who will vote for her because they believe her to be ‘nice.’” Full DanG bloviation here.

Question: Did DanG get it right — Wood & Nilson will emerge as winners of the NIC trustee races? Are you one of the “doofi” who thinks Christie is “nice”?

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D.F. Oliveria is a columnist and blogger for The Spokesman-Review. Print Huckleberries is a past winner of the Herb Caen Memorial Column contest by the National Association of Newspaper Columnists. The Readership Institute of Northwestern University cited this blog as a good example of online community journalism.

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