Gov. John Kitzhaber has recommended that former Congressman Les AuCoin and student Jeremy Nootenboom be confirmed as members of the Southern Oregon University Board of Trustees. Once confirmed by the Oregon Senate, they would complete the 15-member board.

AuCoin, which served Oregon's 1st Congressional District from 1975 to 1993, has been nominated for a four-year term. AuCoin held the Glenn L. Jackson Visiting Professorship of Government and Business Ethics at SOU from 1998 to 2004. 

AuCoin has served on many boards, including those of the Federal Home Loan Bank of Seattle and Pacific University. He has held various positions in university administration and written two books of non-fiction.

“Mr. AuCoin brings great breadth and depth of knowledge and experience to our board,” SOU President Roy Saigo said in a press release.

Nootenboom has been nominated to serve in a board seat reserved for a current SOU student. Students serving on the SOU Board of Trustees are appointed to fulfill a two-year term.

“It’s very important to have a student voice on the Board of Trustees,” Saigo said. “The collective knowledge and expertise of our Board of Trustees is extremely impressive.”

In April, the Oregon State Board of Higher Education endorsed the creation of an institutional board for SOU, which will take over governance of the university in July.

Also this week, Kitzhaber appointed current SOU board member Bill Thorndike Jr. to the State Board of Higher Education to help in the transition before the state board sunsets on June 30, 2015.