One of our writers here recently made the case that Boise State University President Bob Kustra is the most consequential university president Idaho has ever had; and a good case can be made to that effect. A good case can be made too that Elson Floyd of Washington State University was headed on that kind of track for his institution. In his time as president, WSU moved toward developing the state's second medical school and made major expansions in other disciplines and in geographic places around the state. Floyd, who died June 20 only days after revelation that he had cancer, was a major figure in the state and becoming more so. He will be harder than most to replace.
The Northwest has been remarkably lucky so far in this fire season, but remember that with the arrival of July we'll be heading into the period most typical for bad fires. if you check on the National Interagency Fire Center reports, you'll find that the one part of the country with really bad fires so far is Alaska (four fires of more than 7,000 acres each, plus a number of smaller instances). The next hardest-hit state are Arizona and California, but those at relatively modest levels, so far. But with hot and sunny weather, no precipitation on the horizon at all, a lot of fire suppression specialists are doubtless concerned. The coming of 4th of July fireworks no doubt is putting them on edge too, with the message about to go out: Let's be careful out there.