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Tuesday Churn: New era starts

Gov. John Hickenlooper (9News)

Gov. John Hickenlooper (9News)

Daarel Burnette

Updated 12:45 p.m. – John Hickenlooper and Joe Garcia were inaugurated as Colorado’s governor and lieutenant governor this morning during a chilly ceremony on the Capitol’s west steps.

Both touched on the importance of education during brief, to-the-point speeches.

“Colorado must be a place where kids get a world-class education preparing them for the rigors of leadership and the jobs that will define prosperity in the 21st century,” Hickenlooper said. “Colorado must be a place where our college degrees and the learning they signify are the envy of every other state.”

The new governor stressed the need for job creation, economic growth and a leaner, more efficient state government during his remarks. (Full text of speech.)

Garcia, a former college president whom Hickenlooper has tapped to also be director of the Department of Higher Education, touched a bit more on education. (After the ceremony, Hickenlooper created a new Education Leadership Council and named Garcia to chair that, too. See text of executive order creating the council.)

“I want every young person in Colorado to have a life filled with the same possibilities that I have had. But we all know there’s only one way to do that, and that is to continue to invest in our children and our public school system,” Garcia said.

“Education is the foundation upon which our state’s long-term economic stability and prosperity is built. We must reach into every community, every neighborhood, every school and every household to make sure that all of our children are prepared and motivated to learn and that they have access to the high quality and affordable schools and colleges,” he continued.

Hickenlooper announced three executive orders intended to promote economic development and government streamlining and said he would start a four-day tour of the state on Friday. At 11 a.m. Thursday, he will deliver his first State of the State speech to a joint session of the legislature at the Capitol.

Get additonal inauguration coverage, including video of speeches by Hickenlooper, Garcia and outgoing Gov. Bill Ritter, from our partners at 9News.com.


What’s churning:

Gov. Bill Ritter was doing more than packing the last boxes on Monday, his final full day in office. He announced 14 appointments to six state college and university boards, including eight new members and six re-appointments.

Of interest are the appointments of two term-limited Democratic legislators. Outgoing House Speaker Terrance Carroll of Denver was named to the Metro State board, while last session’s speaker pro tempore, Buffie McFadyen of Pueblo West, will become a trustee of Adams State, where she earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees.

College trustee nominations have to be confirmed by the state Senate, which remains in Democratic hands, and seldom are controversial. Ritter’s making the appointments means one less thing to do in the hectic early days of the Hickenlooper administration and keeps boards at full strength.

Here’s the list:

Colorado State University Board of Governors – Leonard W. Gregory of Pueblo West, appointed to a term expiring Dec. 31, 2014; Bonifacio A. Cosyleon of Pueblo, re-appointed to a term expiring Dec. 31, 2014

State Board for Community Colleges and Occupational Education – Anthony L. Leffert of Denver, appointed to a term expiring Dec. 31, 2014; James M. Johnson of Colorado Springs, appointed to a term expiring Dec. 31, 2014; John U. Trefny of Golden, re-appointed to a term expiring Dec. 31, 2014

Fort Lewis College Board of Trustees – Matthew S. Wassam of Sedalia, appointed to a term expiring Dec. 31, 2014; Peter R. Decker or Ridgway, re-appointed to a term expiring Dec. 31, 2014

Adams State College Board of Trustees – Buffie McFadyen of Pueblo West, appointed to a term expiring Dec. 31, 2014; Timothy L. Walters of Alamosa, re-appointed to a term expiring Dec. 31, 2014

Metropolitan State College of Denver Board of Trustees – Terrance D. Carroll of Denver, appointed to a term expiring Dec. 31, 2014; Ellen S. Robinson, re-appointed to a term expiring Dec. 31, 2014; Michelle M. Lucero of Littleton, re-appointed to a term expiring Dec. 31, 2014

Western State College of Colorado Board of Trustees – Linda A. Clark of Denver, appointed to a term expiring Dec. 31, 2014; Todd M. Wheeler of Castle Rock, appointed to a term expiring Dec. 31, 2014

On Dec. 22 Ritter reappointed Jose Marquez of Englewood and appointed Kathleen Eck of Edwards to the Mesa State board.

On Monday, Ritter staffers also paused in their packing to publicize three reports touting the administration’s accomplishments. You can read the main one here (the education section starts on page 14). Earlier, the administration released a report on what it saw as the successes of the P-20 Education Coordinating Council.

Also on Monday, for the fourth year, the Denver School of Science and Technology at Stapleton announced 100 percent of its senior class has been accepted to four-year universities. A celebration is planned at the school at 10 a.m. Thursday. There are 86 members in the senior class, which is mostly minority. Read more here, including a breakdown of the universities accepting students.

What’s on tap:

New Gov. John Hickenlooper, along with Lt. Gov. Joe Garcia, Attorney General John Suthers, Treasurer Walker Stapleton and Secretary of State Scott Gessler will be sworn in during ceremonies starting at 10 a.m. on the west steps of the Capitol.

Good reads from elsewhere:

Good readers, bad schools: D.C. residents are the nation’s most well-read citizens. USA Today