Closing HSU’s Third Street Gallery ‘Would be a Far-Reaching Mistake,’ Says Save Third Street Gallery Committee

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Honorable Chancellor White and CSU Trustees,

We write to ask for your support in keeping Humboldt State University’s Third Street Gallery open. As the “Save Third Street Gallery Committee” we are composed of Humboldt County concerned citizens, business leaders, city officials, emeritus faculty, artists and engaged community and tribal members. We believe the closing of Third Street would be a far-reaching mistake for HSU and for the larger Humboldt County communities and the CSU system of which we are a part.

Recruitment and Retention

The Third Street Gallery provides a stellar example of arts education and art practices at its best and currently has a significant impact on the Art Department’s recruitment and retention. This is because it provides a platform and lab for serving students from diverse cultural and economic backgrounds, including those of Native American heritage, in many ways. For example, it provides students with:

• Internships for the museum studies program,

• Lectures by professional artists,

• Experience running a gallery,

• Exhibition design experience,

• Curatorial experience and writing/art criticism,

• Catalog production and essay writing experience,

• Experience in visual teaching strategies through the art education program

• Experience with K-12th grade students through the docent program

Town Gown

The gallery blends educational curriculum and student involvement with service to the local community and beyond. Third Street Gallery organizes and presents exhibitions with a special focus on contemporary art while providing a publicly accessible venue for art made by regional, tribal, national and international artists as well as the faculty, staff, students and alumni of Humboldt State University.

The gallery’s presence in Eureka’s Old Town aids in validating the designation of the Eureka Cultural Arts District by the California Arts Council.

The gallery brings to the community annual exhibitions dedicated to the subjects of Social Justice and Environmental Stewardship. These exhibitions often will reach out to underserved populations in our local community, helping to build better understanding of our neighbors and our environment.

The value of the arts is evident in our economy, locally and internationally. Countless HSU arts graduates have chosen, over the years, to remain in Humboldt County and they are the creators of many of our most successful industries. Holly-Yashi, Kokotat, Wallace and Hines, Baroni Designs, Marimba One, Fire and Light, Hilliard Lamps are among the “first line” (international awards and distribution) of designers created out of the art minds of graduates of HSU.


Currently, with its location in Eureka and with over 26,000 visitors annually, HSU Third Street Gallery is by far HSU’s most visited, most popular fine arts gallery. In readers’ polls published by the North Coast Journal, HSU Third Street Gallery was selected as the North Coast’s Best Art Gallery in 2011 and 2016. Humboldt State University and the Gallery play a part in state and national acclaim as well. The awards that draw attention to HSU and the region (to parents and potential enrollment!) include the League of Cities designation of Eureka as 1st in Cultural Arts District; Best Small Art Town; One of Top

Five National Main Street Cities; second place in Sunset Magazine’s list of “Game-Changing Places to Live in the West,” 2018 and just this month Lonely Planet named California’s Redwood Coast the Number One Destination in the Country to Visit in 2018. Let’s protect this public relations benefit.

Cypress Grove, Carter Hotel, Six Rivers Brewery, and Fieldbrook Winery are four examples of well-known local businesses that employ graphic designers from HSU. The direct art influence is evident in the successful theater groups, musical ensembles, and world-class murals. Nearly every aspect of our lives, economy (and HSU outreach!) is enhanced by artists. In short, the seeds that HSU creativity plants at HSU and into our community is precisely what makes us successful and brings national recognition to the region.

Thanks to the work of our students and the support of our community and university colleagues, the gallery has garnered a reputation that stretches way beyond our region and draws visitors and artists from far and wide.

The Jewel of HSU

The gallery has a national reputation that is fitting for HSU, with its reputation and mission for being a regional center for the arts. Third Street Gallery has thousands of supporters in the county—people know that on the first Saturday of every month during “Arts Alive” they can count on seeing an exciting exhibition they won’t see anywhere else. Closing the gallery would be a tremendous loss to the HSU community and the Humboldt County community educationally and financially. It is said that Third Street Gallery is the jewel of HSU and that it has become the cultural epicenter of Eureka. It is vital that we have our Chancellor’s support to protect it.

Thank you,

Partial List of Supporters:

Susan Abbott, President, Abbott & Company, Inc.

Austen Allison, Eureka City Council Member

Virginia Bass, Humboldt County Supervisor

Dr. Jean Heard Bazemore, Principal of Northcoast Preparatory and Arts Academy

Robert F. Benson, Professor Emeritus of Art College of the Redwoods and Tsnugwe Tribal Elders Council

JoAnne Berke, HSU Emeritus Faculty

Patty Berg, former California State Assemblywoman

Elizabeth Berrien, Wire Zoo, sculptor and illustrator

Marian Brady, Eureka City Councilmember and owner of Marian Brady Design

Lynn and George Bucquet, owner, Mad River Glass

Edith Butler, Former HSU Staff

Pam Cahill, Eureka Symphony Board Member

Mikki Cardoza, CEO/Broker/Owner MikkiMoves Real Estate, Inc.

Lynn and Kelly Carlin, HSU alumni, BA in Arts and property owner

Cindy Chesbro, retired instructor

Wesley Chesbro, California State Senator, retired

Patrick Cleary

Carol Coar, Educational Consultant,

Natalie Craig, Redwood Arts Association and artist

Brad Curtis, Parosol Arts Pottery and Mosaics

Lorraine Dillon, Former HSU Staff

Doug Durham, Retired Aerospace Engineer, Art Collector

Diane Eikenbery, arts advocate

Ben Fairless, HSU Emeritus Professor

Brian Fergeson, Ramone’s Bakery and Cafe Owner

David Ferney, Theatre Producer, Director

Michael Fields, Artistic Director, Dell’Arte International

Nancy Flemming; former Eureka Mayor, California Coastal Commissioner; ED. Sequoia Humane Society

Jon Forsythe, Engineer

Nick Frank, Eureka property owner and Economic Development Consultant

Julie Fulkerson, business owner, former City Mayor (Arcata and Trinidad) and County Board Member

Bob and Mary Gearheart, Supporters of the Arts

Lori Goodman, HSU alumni, MA, Sculpture

Zuretti Goosby

Nina Groth, artist and Eureka property owner

Lynn Harvey, Creative Director and Co-Owner of Carson Park Design

Cassandra Hesseltine, Film Commissioner Humboldt-Del Norte Film Commission

Peter Jermyn, Los Bagels Company

Russ Krause, Eureka City Property Owner

Lewis Litzky, CPA

Charlotte McDonald, Eureka Main Street Executive Director

Michele McKeegan, Keep Eureka Beautiful

Mary Keehn, Founder, Cypress Grove

Peter LaVallee, Former Eureka Mayor

Corey Lewis, PhD, Former HSU Professor

Sasha Lyth is Co-Chair Arts and Education Committee Humboldt Arts Council

Johanna Mauro

Libby Maynard, Executive Director, Ink People Center for the Arts

Joel Mielke, Creative Director and Co-Owner of Carson Park Design

Berit Meyer, Ramone’s Bakery and Cafe Owner

Shirley Miller, Retired teacher, Docent for the Humboldt Arts Council

Lynette Mullen, Owner/Director Project Delivery

Steve O’Meara, Kokatat

Susan Ornelas, Arcata City Council

Sophia Pelafigue, Pacific Union School.

Anne Pierson, property owner

Lucy Quinby, Co-Chair Arts and Education Committee Humboldt Arts Council.

Lewis Quinby

Rollin C. Richmond, Emeritus President, Humboldt State University

Wendy Rowan, Director, Humboldt First Five, retired

Ron Samuels, owner of Marimba One

Kelly Sanders, HSU graduate, Clerk, Recorder/Registrar of Voters

Neal Sanders, Attorney

Peter Santino

George and Peggy Schmidbauer

Suzanne Simpson, Artist, Film Producer

Tony Smithers, Eureka-Humboldt Visitors Bureau

Dr. Rebecca Stauffer, Physician

Alexandra Stillman, HSU alumni, Arcata City Council, retired and property owner

Alexandria Sullivan, Museum Manager, Humboldt Arts Council in the Morris Graves Museum of Art

Brett Watson, Vice Mayor, City of Arcata

Kenneth W. Weiderman, Art Teacher, Zane Middle School, former Lecturer, Art Dept.

Gail Wight, Associate Professor Stanford University

Mike Wilson, Humboldt County Supervisor

John Woolley, HSU Graduate, former Humboldt County Supervisor

Katy and Mike Yanke



Board of Trustees, California State University

Silas Abrego

Jane W. Carney

Adam Day

Rebecca D. Eisen

Douglas Faigin

Debra S. Farar

Jean P. Firstenberg

Emily F. Hinton

Lillian Kimbell

Thelma Meléndez de Santa Ana

Hugo N. Morales

Jon Nilon

J. Lawrence Norton

Jorge Reyes Salinas

Romey Sabalius

Lateefah Simon

Peter J. Taylor

Humboldt State University

Lisa Rossbacher, President, HSU and President’s Cabinet

Colleen Mullery

Cheryl Johnson

Mary Hackett

HSU Resource Planning Committee

Mark Rizzardi

Alexander Enyedi

Erick Eschker

James Woglom

Kacie Flynn

Sarah Bacio

Douglas Dawes

Wayne Brumfield

Craig Wruck

Cyril Oberlander

Joey Mularky

Hari Singh

Lisa Bond-Maupin

Rosamel Benavides-Garb

Heather Madar

Julie Alderson

Jack Bentley



  • This is the same university (sic) that cancelled the only productive program at this institution. Nursing. Possibly you may have an artist take care of an aging population. The walls of our home are covered with art and it does elevate the mind. If the third street gallery is as vital and supported as claimed it should be able to pay its own way.

    • For time and money I would have gone to CR..............

      When they cancelled the nursing it only had eight students and five full time faculty. I was none of the eight. And CR had started their two year program. An RN is not a degree. Very little of a four year degree applies to what nurses actually do in a hospital.

    • It was a shame that nursing was cancelled, but to call it the only productive program at the college is absurd. HSU has very solid biology, fisheries, forestry, engineering, and chemistry programs (to name a few).

      • Exactly! Thank you for pointing that out! I can save myself from additional typing.
        P.S. My sis is alumni and still has a career with the degree’s she earned 16yrs ago. Think before you thunk!

  • Because ART is so important, NOT!

    • Art isn’t important? To me it is. Football (I hope you passionate fans forgive me) isn’t important to me. But it might be to you.

      • I am an art department graduate (to save my cred, sculpture with emphasis on chainsaw sculpting, blacksmithing and foundry). Damn, most days, or nights, I would flush that whole department for the nursing students downstairs. I still can’t believe they got rid of that, IT, or most of their life sciences. I just dump all their alum stuff in the recycle bin at the PO box, figgin joke of an institution. I love this gallery and what it represents for students, but there are some GLARING omissions from the supporter list, and MANY. What they did publish is a wealthy and large donor base, why don’t they just go 501C?

  • The nursing program was a big loss to our community. I thought I remember something about being unable to staff the program? Anyway at that point I recognized that it was an institution uninterested in those outside of it. What they do, they do. It is only of passing interest.

  • Cancel football. All those head injuries will be needing medical personal. Too bad there won’t be any.

  • Or…close HSU. Think of the savings.

  • What is the annual cost of operating the Gallery? Isn’t it an opportunity for the university and community to partner to continue an asset to both? Maybe this could be an example of what we all can do to bring local educational needs to a forum where they can be solves through partnership?

  • A common fallacy is to equate education with intelligence. There are some very highly educated people who seem unable to run a business. I thunk.

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