Thumbs up to retired Fresno homicide detectives Bob Schiotis and Vince Zavala for volunteering to investigate the cold case murder of Fresno State student Debbie Dorian, who was raped and murdered in 1996. The detectives, who worked on the high-profile case two decades ago, will go over old leads and consider new ones, assisted by advances in DNA technology. There is a $57,000 reward offered for the apprehension of the perpetrator or perpetrators. Anyone with information about the murder or assaults in Visalia linked by DNA evidence to the Dorian case is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 559-498-7867.
Thumbs down to Mylan Inc., maker of life-saving EpiPens, and its CEO, Heather Bresch. It’s bad enough that the price of EpiPens has exploded from $94 in 2007 to more than $600 today. Also skyrocketing: executive pay at Mylan, which bought the EpiPen rights in 2007. Bresch’s compensation soared from $2.5 million to nearly $19 million in 2015.
EpiPens are widely used to inject epinephrine, which reverses swelling and other symptoms of potentially deadly allergic reactions to foods or insect bites. More than 3.6 million prescriptions for the two-dose packs were filled last year. Too bad the company that makes them and its top executive are void of moral decency.
Thumbs up to Jalen Bailey, age 8, for creating his own bakery to raise money to buy a house for himself and his single mom. Jalen told The Bee’s Carmen George that he has a GoFundMe donation account online that he’s using to expand his business (the next goal is getting a commercial license and renting a commercial kitchen, which is required to mail his goods to customers) and to support his philanthropic work.
He collects backpacks and school supplies that he’s given to around 50 children so far at the Evangel Home in Fresno and a nearby park. Jalen counts the things his money is going toward on one hand: “House, college, puppy and savings.” His dream dog is a golden retriever.
Thumbs up to Nathan Bond of Fresno, age 10, for impressing “we the people” nationwide by memorizing the Constitution. He hit the national media this week on video all dressed up in a suit and tie. It took him 137 days to accomplish his goal. You may remember Nathan for reciting the Declaration of Independence for the Fresno City Council and the state Assembly, his previous project.
Thumbs down to Fresno City Councilman Steve Brandau for trash-talking his constituents. When local businessman Tal Cloud posted a request this week on Facebook looking for office help answering phones and bookkeeping, instead of sharing this posting with his many followers to help someone find a job, Brandau posted this remark: “If you are looking for someone who can show up on time, pleasantly take calls, make notes in English, do some basic math … well that may require a nationwide search.” Sounds like Brandau doesn’t have a high opinion of the people he serves. (Surprise, Councilman: Cloud found someone.)
Thumbs up to Fresno State for launching its first minor program in Hmong language studies through the linguistics department in the College of Arts and Humanities. Over 100 students are enrolled in Hmong minor courses for fall 2016. As Hmong program coordinator Kao-Ly Yang says, said the minor is designed to connect or reconnect students to 4,000 years of Hmong heritage.
The Hmong minor at Fresno State is the first in the Western United States and fifth in the nation. Fresno has the second largest population of Hmong in the United States.
Thumbs up to the Fresno Cradle to Career Partnership for landing a $710,000 grant from the James Irvine Foundation to provide infrastructure that will speed it to its goal of ensuring healthy students are prepared to graduate from high school and enter the world of college or careers. More than 37 partners across nine sectors are committed to improving children’s life trajectory through the C2C Partnership.