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CSUN BEGINS CAMPUS VISITS OF CANDIDATES; FOUR VIE FOR PRESIDENT POST.

Byline: Robert Monroe Staff Writer

Antoine Garibaldi, one of four candidates for the presidency of CSUN, described himself during a campus visit Monday as a hands-on administrator but not an autocrat.

Garibaldi, provost and chief academic officer of Howard University in Washington D.C., steered clear of some the most contentious issues at California State University, Northridge, in a 75-minute question-and-answer session and focused heavily on his academic record and past recruiting ability.

``I believe a university must play an active role in its community,'' said the 49-year-old Garibaldi, voicing a point early in his talk that he frequently re-emphasized.

Garibaldi is the only man in the field and only African-American. The rest of the candidates are scheduled to visit the campus individually this week.

David Phelps, associated students vice president, questioned Garibaldi on whether a sports stadium should be built at CSUN's north end.

``I hope you'll respect my taking somewhat of the fifth on that,'' said Garibaldi, after saying he didn't feel he knew enough about the issue yet.

Later Phelps said: ``He appeared to have studied the current and past issues on campus pretty well. I would have expected him to have a little more of a stance on the stadium issue. To say that he didn't have enough information, I found a little interesting.''

Much of Garibaldi's background as student and university administrator is in historically African-American universities, none west of the Mississippi. Before Howard, he had served most recently as vice president for academic affairs at Xavier University in New Orleans.

Audience members asked him his opinions on dealing with a student body in which a significant portion speaks English as a second language and how he would promote CSUN as a part of the emerging Pacific Rim economy.

Garibaldi admitted he can't speak Spanish or the three other languages he's studied and agreed that Asian, Latin American and western United States economies are an important force which students should understand.

``I'm sure he'll bring some experience from the other end (of the United States) which we need,'' said Ram Roy, a political science professor.

Candidates Gretchen Bataille, provost at Washington State University; Jolene Koester, provost at CSU Sacramento; and Jane Pisano, senior vice president for external relations at University of Southern California, are scheduled to visit the campus this week. Bataille is expected today.

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photo

Photo: Howard University Provost Antoine Garibaldi focused on his academic record during a question-and-answer session at CSUN on Monday.

Hans Gutknecht/Staff Photographer
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Publication:Daily News (Los Angeles, CA)
Date:Nov 9, 1999
Words:416
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