Sonoma State University
Emeritus and Retired Faculty & Staff Association

We have vacancies on our Executive Board. We urge general members of ERFA to help the association by serving on the Board. We meet several times a year, as needed, generally in the Faculty Center on floor 1 of Schulz. Rashmi Singh has just resigned from the Board, as she has moved to San José. So we are short a full complement of Board members. Right now the position of Secretary is open, and so is Membership Officer. Sally Hurtado remains President, Rick Luttmann is Treasurer and also Academic Senate Representative. (Bob Plantz, though not on the Board, is our web-master.)

SSU-ERFSA Board membership vacancies

From Rick Luttman, SSU-ERFSA Treasurer and Representative to the Academic Senate:

I'm sure that, like me, you are busier in retirement than ever during paid service. So that's why I'm writing to you: "If you want something done, ask a busy (wo)man!"

The SSU-ERFSA Board has some openings for retirees, and it is my great pleasure on behalf of the local Board to invite you to participate. We need a Secretary, a Vice-President, and most importantly a representative to the Academic Senate. We also have openings for at-large members. We meet approximately monthly, usually in the late mornings.

So that you can have an idea of what goes on at our meetings the minutes of our most recent meeting, which occurred 4 November 2019, are available under the Executive Board heading on the left. When you get there, scroll down to Executive Board Meeting Minutes.

Please let me or our President, Sally Hurtado, know of your interest. I hope you will consider supporting the Sonoma State Emeritus and Retired Faculty/Staff Assn (SSU-ERFSA)!

Things of Interest

  • Kathy Charmaz

    From Debora Paterniti, Chair of Sociology:

    I am writing with the very sad news of Kathy Charmaz’s passing. Kathy passed away this morning (July 26, 2020) in her home, where she had been in hospice over the past few weeks.

    Kathy was an incredible force in Medical Sociology and Qualitative Methods, yet she touched many lives beyond her academic publications. Through her generously intensive mentoring, she involved many of us in more critical, clear, and engaged versions of ourselves as Sociologists...and she created communities of passionate scholars in the process.

    Sociology, as many of us, will suffer a huge loss with her passing, and will forever hold a depth of gratitude for her engagement in our discipline and our lived experience.

  • Updated 2020 RMD Rules from IRS

    As of June 23, 2020, the IRS has extended the deadline for rolling back 2020 RMDs to August 31, 2020. They also say that the repayment is not subject to the one rollover per 12-month period limitation. For more information go to https://www.irs.gov/newsroom/irs-announces-rollover-relief-for-required-minimum-distributions-from-retirement-accounts-that-were-waived-under-the-cares-act.

    This item is for informational purposes only. You should not construe any such information or other material as legal, tax, investment, financial, or other advice.

  • Message from SSU President, Judy K. Sakaki, 18 June 2020

    Sonoma State Community,

    I am extremely heartened by the Supreme Court’s ruling today that rejects the presidential administration’s effort to deport hundreds of thousands of young undocumented people by terminating the program called Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA). These young adults are passionate, hardworking members of our society. Many of them were brought here as children and know no other country as home. Even though they currently lack a path to citizenship, they dedicate their lives to giving back to our communities as teachers, caregivers, volunteers, and leaders across a range of professions.

    We at Sonoma State stand by our undocumented community members, and will do so until a permanent legislative solution for them is reached. I am proud that in my time as Sonoma State president we have created an Undocu-Resource Center and provided expanded scholarship opportunities to better support our undocumented students as they earn their college degrees. I also join with CSU Chancellor Timothy P. White and my fellow CSU presidents in calling on Congress to take the necessary, bipartisan action to grant undocumented individuals access to full participation in American life.

    Today’s ruling is a reminder that whatever our immigration or citizenship status, we all share the same dream: to fulfill our human potential; to live meaningful lives openly and joyfully; and to work together in building an even greater future for our country – one that is inclusive, empowering, and imbued with hope for one and all.

    With gratitude,

    Judy K. Sakaki

  • CalPERS Long-Term Care Program Expected to See Significant Premium Increases

    The URL for the article is: https://www.csuerfsa.org/index.php/latest-csu-erfsa-news/85-calpers-long-term-care-program-expected-to-see-significant-premium-increases.

  • Response to Systemic Anti-Black Violence in the US

    The Executive Committee of the Academic Senate approved a Resolution in Response to Systemic and Persistent Anti-Black Violence in the United States of America on June 4, 2020. The resolution is now posted on the Senate website: http://senate.sonoma.edu/resolutions.

  • David Walls

    We regret to report the death on 6 June 2020 of David Walls after his long struggle with Parkinson's disease. Davie was a Professor of Sociology and also served as Dean of Extended Education. He is survived by his wife Lucia Gattone. David was committed to the causes of human rights and social justice. He authored a book called "The Activist's Almanac". He was a board member of the Mario Savio Memorial Lecture. Information about a Memorial Service will be distributed when it becomes available.

    His full obituary appeared in the June 12, 2020, issue of the Press Democrat: https://www.legacy.com/obituaries/pressdemocrat/obituary.aspx?n=david-walls&pid=196328907&fhid=24174.

  • Memory Book for the late David Averbuck

    We have just learned that recently-deceased Hutchins Professor Emeritus David Averbuck's son Jacob asked to let you know that you may click on the link below and share your memories of him, so that Jacob can make a book for his mother to have: https://everloved.com/life-of/david-averbuck/memories/.

  • June 2020 issue of our CSU-ERFSA newsletter - The Reporter.

    This issue includes a number of very important articles for CSU retirees as we thread our way through the COVID-19 "minefield.".

    Click on "ERFSA Statewide" in the menu on your left.

  • CSU-ERFSA Partners with AMBIA to Add New Member Benefits

    Association Member Benefits and Insurance Advisors will provide supplemental insurance plans and discounts for some products and services of interest to seniors.

    Click on "ERFSA Statewide" in the menu on your left.

  • SSU Provost Resigns

    Dear Campus Community,

    I write to inform you that Lisa Vollendorf, Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs, has resigned from her position effective at the end of this academic year. Lisa has decided to pursue professional opportunities closer to her extended family while, in the short term, providing critical guidance at the CSU Chancellor’s Office for academic continuity and innovation efforts.

    Provost Vollendorf came to Sonoma State on July 1, 2017 after serving as Dean of the College of Humanities and Arts at San Jose State University. Since joining Sonoma State, she has been a champion of student, faculty, and staff success. In collaboration with campus stakeholders, she helped lead our strategic planning process and developed a budgeting framework to support strategic priorities in Academic Affairs. Provost Vollendorf also played a major role in strengthening academic advising and student recruitment through CSU’s Graduation Initiative 2025, which helped increase our student graduation rates. She also worked with us through the numerous emergencies that we have experienced over the past three years.

    I am grateful for Lisa’s service and commitment to Sonoma State. Please join me in wishing her well in her future endeavors. ,

    Plans for an Interim Provost will be announced shortly.

    With gratitude,

    Judy K. Sakaki

    President

  • CSU-ERFSA Announces 2020 Small Grants Program

    Click on "ERFSA Statewide" in the menu on your left.

  • Stimulus Bill Eases Restrictions on IRAs, 401Ks and Similar Retirement Accounts

    The Stimulus Bill has made some changes that may affect how you treat your retirement account(s). In particular, there are some changes in RMD rules.

    Click on "ERFSA Statewide" in the menu on your left.

  • CalPERS Response to COVID-19 Pandemic

    We have received information from CalPERS about how they are responding to the coronavirus crises, reminding us that our pension payments are secure: https://www.csuerfsa.org/index.php/latest-csu-erfsa-news/79-message-from-calpers-re-coronavirus-and-pension-payments-etc.

    Of particular note:

    Costs and fees for testing for COVID-19 are waived for all CalPERS health members. This includes all HMO, PPO, basic, and Medicare plans. All other plan design features and coverage remains the same. We do advise members to refrain from all non-essential hospital visits, for their safety and for the safety of our health care workers.

  • CSU Campus Response to COVID-19 Pandemic

    From Laura Watt, SSUFaculty Chair:

    At noon today [3/16] I participated in a Zoom call with most of the other Senate Chairs around the CSU, plus Catherine Nelson as Statewide Senate chair. The main takeaway for me was simply that we are all struggling with similar issues and concerns around the state, and no one has any magic answers. no big surprises there! the "shelter in place" restrictions for 6 of the 9 Bay Area counties were announced during this call, so I expect there was more scrambling afterward, at least for SFSU, CSUEB, and SJSU. Our main topics of discussion were about strategies for keeping faculty governance running as best we can during this period of turbulence, and also various campus' discussions about implications for SETEs and RTP—once I get some more clarity on what other campuses might be *doing*, rather than just discussing, I will get those out to you.

    Then at 3pm I participated in the SSU Incident Response Team (IRT) meeting—my first, having just been added to the group, and also my last: SSU will be activating its Emergency Operations Center (EOC) at a level 2 status (I'm not sure what that means) starting tomorrow 3/17 at 8am, and none of us governance representatives (myself as Faculty Chair, President of AS, and President of Staff Council) are members of the EOC. I'm not sure why this is, my impression is that it's some state or federal guideline on the composition of EOCs—I asked to be included anyway, and was told no.

    I will be staying in close contact with the Provost and AVP of Academic Programs, and the Provost thinks that this listserv will not be shut down (although that could change if conditions seriously worsen), so I'll do my best to keep you all appraised. I see that the Provost's office just sent out an email with Academic Resources for Remote Teaching and Learning, hoping that's helpful - if more questions arise, let me know.

    Other useful information from the IRT meeting:

    • The Chancellor's Office has asked all campuses to go to remote instruction but to keep campuses open if possible. This guidance can be overruled by local County directives, though, such as the shelter-in-place orders now affecting SFSU, SJSU, and CSUEB.
    • the team of CSU heads of Admin & Finance have been asked to develop standards for refunds IF NEEDED for housing, dining, and parking—further guidance on this is expected from the CO.
    • Telecommuting is already being encouraged where appropriate, with an emphasis on flexibility, and is mandatory for those 65 and over—admins are working to help people transition to telecommuting as needed, so if you need help with this, let them know.
    • EOC is being activated tomorrow, and as mentioned above, will follow local directives—if we get to a circumstance where dining services on campus could be required to shut down, they are working on a GrubHub Campus mechanism for either food delivery or pick-up service for students still on campus—that's being developed now. there will not be an additional fee for that, IF it ends up being needed./li>
    • All study abroad students except two (one in Canada, one at Boise State) are returning, either to their homes or to campus residences; for the latter, they must self-quarantine for a minimum of 14 days, and space within housing is being identified/set up for that. They currently know of ten of those students who intend to return to campus & will need to be in quarantine. Some of the study-abroad students will need academic plans for completing the semester, as their host campuses are not offering on-line completion options—so Academic Programs is working on that.
    • Campus events are being canceled for a period of eight weeks out from now—I asked about whether this includes Commencement, and apparently the CO has asked all campuses to HOLD on making any decisions about Commencement yet—so for now, it's still on.
    • I also asked about the Stevenson move-out and surge plans—and there is no change for now in the plan to move out by the end of the semester, although that may need to change in response to shelter-in-place orders for some counties, or if Sonoma County goes to a similar restriction. I asked about the surge space in the library & how it could be quite problematic for social distancing, but Joyce rightly commented that if there's still a need for social distancing in summer/fall, we will likely still be doing remote instruction anyway.

    And I think that's what seems most important, from my notes—as always, let me know if I can help or redirect questions or concerns.

  • Judith Wright, Professor Emeritus, Business Administration

    Judith died March 8, 2020. At her request, there will be no memorial. You can read more at "In Memoriam" in the menu on the left.

  • CalPERS Cost-of-Living Adustments for 2020

    The CalPERS Board will be approving Cost-of-Living Adjustments for 2020 at its March 17, 2020 meeting. COLAs will range from 1.81% to 2.00% depending on your retirement year, and will appear in your May 1, 2020 pay warrant or direct deposit advice.

    More details at: https://www.csuerfsa.org/index.php/latest-csu-erfsa-news/78-calpers-to-announce-colas-for-2020.

  • COVID-19 Advice for Seniors.

    The URL is: https://www.csuerfsa.org/index.php/latest-csu-erfsa-news/77-covid-19-advice-for-seniors.

  • Charles Schwab Offers Free Book on Financial Planning to CSU-ERFSA Members.

    You can read about it at https://www.csuerfsa.org/index.php/latest-csu-erfsa-news/76-charles-schwab-offers-free-book-on-financial-planning-to-csu-erfsa-members.

  • Pending Legislation of Interest to CSU-ERFSA Members.

    You can read about it at https://www.csuerfsa.org/index.php/latest-csu-erfsa-news/75-csu-erfsa-legislative-director-s-report-part-3-pending-legislation.

  • Risks that the CalPERS Pension Fund faces, and efforts CalPERS is making to control healthcare costs.

    You can read about it at https://www.csuerfsa.org/index.php/latest-csu-erfsa-news/73-csu-erfsa-legislative-director-s-report-part-2.

  • Robert Girling, Professor Emeritus, School of Business and Economics, is new Legislative Director for CSU-ERFSA

    You can read about it at https://www.csuerfsa.org/index.php/latest-csu-erfsa-news/72-csu-erfsa-legislative-director-s-report-part-1.

  • Final Evaluation of Community College Bachelor's Degree Pilot (Program)

    This article has been added to the CSU-ERFSA Latest News Page: www.csuerfsa.org/index.php/latest-csu-erfsa-news/71-final-evaluation-of-community-college-bachelor-s-degree-pilot.

  • CSU-ERFA Charitable Foundation Funds Ten Research Grants

    The CSU-ERFA Charitable Foundation has awarded research grants to ten CSU faculty: https://www.csuerfsa.org/index.php/latest-csu-erfsa-news/70-csu-erfa-foundation-funds-ten-research-grants

  • CalPERS Draft Climate-Change-Impact Report

    This report considers how the CalPERS pension fund will be affected by climate-change factors. The URL for the article is: https://www.csuerfsa.org/index.php/latest-csu-erfsa-news/68-calpers-releases-draft-climate-change-impact-report

  • Upload Information for Medicare Part B Reimbursement Request

    Mark Shapiro, CSU-ERFSA webmaster has provided a link to upload the files for the IRMAA Additional Reimbursement Request through your MyCalPERS account: https://www.csuerfsa.org/index.php/latest-csu-erfsa-news/69-uploading-your-irmaa-documents-directly-to-your-my-calpers-account

  • Medicare Part B

    Dear Colleagues and Friends,

    If you will be subject to the Medicare Part B Income Related Monthly Adjustment Amount (IRMAA), you may be eligible to a full or partial reimbursement for this from CalPERS. I have posted information on our News & Views Page on how to apply for the reimbursement. Note that CalPERS automatically reimburses you for the basic Medicare Part B Premium, but not for the IRMAA reimbursement. You must apply for that each year.

    To access the article go to: http://csuerfa.org/news-views.html#IRMAA4

    Please let me know if you have any questions, comments, or concerns.

    Sincerely,

    Mark Shapiro, CSU-ERFSA webmaster

  • Contact Information for ERFA Members

    Our SSU-ERFA Executive Board is working on obtaining email addresses for all of our members. One of the problems with the recent vote is that the CSU-ERFA office does not have email addresses for all of the members. This is one of the reasons why some paid CSU-ERFA members did not receive the email containing the ballot for the recent vote. Our chapter is working diligently to obtain email addresses for all of our members. This is a challenging task that we are undertaking. We will work closely with CSU-ERFA office, but we will need to ask for your cooperation to help us obtain this information.

    There are many addressees on our mailing list who are not officially members of ERFA. That is fine – we share the information we provide with anyone interested.

    But you need to be aware that just because you get our emails doesn't mean you're officially a member. Membership in the Sonoma State Chapter is automatic with membership in the statewide organization, CSU-ERFA. There are dues, but quite nominal: at most $10 a month, depending on your PERS check – which you can arrange to have deducted from your PERS check. Or you can make an annual payment. Official membership grants you, among other things, the right to vote in CSU-ERFA elections.

    To join the organization, check out this web-site: csuerfa.org/membership.html.

  • Fire Response Working Group

    Initial Meeting

    • Thursday, March 8, 2018
    • Schulz Hall, Room 3001
    • 1:00 - 2:00 PM

    In the aftermath of the devastating fires that impacted our community, and in recognition of the ongoing challenges our community will face as a result, the Center for Community Engagement is composing a Fire Response Working Group. The working group is open to all university community members. The focus of the group will be to match community needs with SSU community resources and to increase collaboration among SSU faculty, staff, and students. These resources may take the form of service-learning courses, community-based research, or volunteerism.

    We plan to meet once a month. If you are interested, please come to our initial meeting. If you are unable to attend this initial meeting, please contact Missy Garvin at missy.garvin@sonoma.edu to indicate your interest.

News:

    Dear Fellow Members of SSU-ERFA

    CSU-ERFA is asking the chapters on different campuses to provide information on the types of involvement its members are continuing to have with their home campus once they have retired from working there. They have provided us with a list which you will find here of some 19 possibilities activities that might be either currently happening or at least possible on some of the campuses. If you have at least recently been doing any of these activities on the list at SSU we ask that you send an e-mail with the number associated with the appropriate item or items on the list and if you include #19 (other) we ask that you tell us what that activity is.

    Please send your e-mail with this info to Sally Hurtado comadre5@hotmail.com

Who We Are:

The SSU Emeritus and Retired Faculty Association (SSU-ERFA) provides opportunities for maintaining professional relations with colleagues; works to address concerns and preserve the rights and benefits of emeritus and retired faculty and staff; provides a voice for retired faculty through an elected representative to the SSU Academic Senate; and, keeps up to date with the statewide organization, California State University - Emeritus and Retired Faculty Association (CSU-ERFA), which protects the rights of retired California State University faculty and staff.

When you join CSU-ERFA you automatically become a member of SSU-ERFA. Please visit the CSU-ERFA website to learn the many benefits of membership, including a Grants Award Program. Download and complete the CSU-ERFA membership application or call the CSU-ERFA office at (818) 718-7996 to request an application.

SSU-ERFA sponsors local events, usually two each semester. Our next event will be in Fall 2015. Watch here for details as they become available..

In addition to its affiliation with CSU-ERFA, SSU-ERFA has its own Bylaws. Our activities are governed by our Executive Board. If you are an emeritus or retired faculty member from another CSU campus and live near Sonoma State, you are most welcome to join us.

SSU Staff are also invited to join ERFA. SSU-ERFA is one of several ERFA programs that invites staff as well as faculty to the program to enjoy all of the member benefits.