Chico State Online MBA Faculty

The same outstanding Chico State faculty who teach our on-campus MBA classes work to create an interactive, personal dynamic in our Online MBA program.

They are experienced and dedicated business educators, each of whom is committed to passing on their rich knowledge of contemporary business to a new generation of leaders. They must demonstrate they understand the best practices in online pedagogy in order to teach in our Online MBA program, and they specifically design their courses to keep students engaged and create optimized learning experiences.

This effort and expertise translate into courses that communicate material effectively using multiple means and that synthesize new knowledge with an exploration of today's business landscape to produce practical applications you can leverage in your career.

Learn more about the Online MBA faculty members responsible for creating our program's vibrant learning environment.

Faculty Connection at Chico State

Direct connection with our MBA students is a top priority for the College of Business faculty at Chico State.

To fulfill this mission for our online students, all faculty members are available for one-on-one meetings during virtual office hours in every Online MBA course they teach. And to foster a collaborative atmosphere like the one our on-campus MBA students enjoy, each online faculty member will hold optional weekly live courses and include a group project in nearly every class.

Ken Chapman, PhD, MBA

Dr. Ken Chapman is a professor of marketing, director of the Online MBA program, and associate dean of the College of Business at Chico State. He holds a PhD in Marketing from the University of Colorado, Boulder, an MBA with concentrations in Marketing and Real Estate Finance from the University of Southern California, and bachelor’s degrees in Business Economics and Cognitive Psychology from the University of California, Santa Barbara. Prior to teaching at Chico State, Dr. Chapman worked at NCR Microelectronics as a product planner, annually managing over $14 million worth of semiconductors. He has worked with a large variety of tech firms including Apple, Seagate, JVC, and Samsung.

Dr. Chapman teaches marketing research, consumer behavior, and principles of marketing in the College of Business. His teaching philosophy is based on an underlying belief that his role as a professor is to increase the likelihood that students will be successful in their chosen career path, and it guides him to ensure that his students have the opportunity to think about, discuss, and apply course material in situations that go above and beyond their exams. He takes pride in not only ensuring his students know the content from the course, but become better writers, more analytical and critical thinkers, and better team leaders as well.

Dr. Chapman is an active researcher, with over 40 publications and a large number of presentations. His research focuses on the intersection of information processing and marketing, as well as research on teaching and teams. He has been a professor for around 25 years.

Dr. Chapman is an avid trail runner, typically running about 25 miles/week in the local hills around Chico State, and he also enjoys long hikes and adventure travel. In the last several years, he has been to the top of Half Dome, climbed Mt. Whitney twice, spent eight days rafting in the Grand Canyon, cruised around the Amazon and the Galapagos, trekked around Norway, and traveled in Croatia.

Ghadir Ishqaidef, PhD

Dr. Ghadir Ishqaidef is an assistant professor of management in the College of Business at California State University, Chico. She holds a PhD in Business Administration with concentration in Human Resources Management from the University of Kansas and a bachelor’s degree in business and economics from Ursinus College. She has been published in national and international conference proceedings and journals such as Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Health Care Management Review, Health Expectations, Rutgers Business Review, Academy of Management, and Southern Academy of Management. Her research interests include work environment, psychological safety, team dynamics, strategic HR, and new work arrangements such as gig and temp workers.

Dr. Ishqaidef is a long-term member of the Academy of Management and the Society of Human Resource Management. She was recognized by Ursinus College with the Rising Star Alumni award in 2016, she has won best paper awards in several national and international conferences, and she has been inducted into the Phi Beta Kappa national academic honor society and the Omicron Delta Epsilon International Economics Honor Society.

Her teaching philosophy is based on the goal of unlocking a life-long desire for learning among her students. She aspires to facilitate high-quality learning experiences during which students travel through a journey of self-discovery while learning about the subject matter in hand. To maximize the probability that students will succeed in their future careers, She emphasizes learning outcomes that employ problem-solving, critical thinking, teamwork, and ethical decision-making skills. She teaches introductory and advanced courses in human resources management at Chico State.

When she is not teaching or conducting research, Dr. Ishqaidef likes to hike, swim, kayak, travel, spend quality time with her family, learn new languages, draw, and read books.

Hyunjung Kim, PhD, MA

Dr. Hyunjung Kim is an associate professor in the Department of Management in the College of Business at California State University, Chico. She holds an undergraduate degree in Korean language and literature from Yonsei University, Seoul, Korea. After working in the corporate sector briefly, Dr. Kim decided to go back to school, earning an MA from the Graduate School of International Studies, Korea University, Seoul, Korea with specialization in International Commerce and a PhD in Public Administration from the Rockefeller College of Public Affairs and Policy, University at Albany. Her doctoral dissertation focused on the development of system dynamics simulation models as a decision support tool for policy making.

Dr. Kim’s teaching areas include management, strategic decision-making, and computer simulation modeling. Her research focuses on decision science, particularly the use of system dynamics simulation modeling. Using a Group Model Building approach to include key stakeholders in the modeling process, she helps decision makers understand the complexity of their systems and assess potential outcomes of their strategic and managerial decisions. Her strategy course is highly influenced by this analytical framework.

As a system dynamics modeler, Dr. Kim works on various research and consulting projects. Some of the application areas include data-driven service industry, higher education, public health, environmental resource management, and monetary decision making at the Federal Reserve. Her research articles are published in peer-reviewed journals like System Dynamics Review, Systems Research and Behavioral Science, and Public Administration Review.

Dr. Kim resides in Chico with her husband, a practicing dentist, and their son, a serious Lego collector and a huge K-pop fan. They have three cats, all of whom appeared in their backyard at different times and chose to stay. In her free time, Dr. Kim loves to read, draw, and color.

Katie Mercurio, PhD, MS

Dr. Katie Mercurio is an assistant professor of Marketing in the College of Business at California State University, Chico. She holds a PhD, an MS in Business Administration, and a BA in Business Administration, all from the University of Washington. Dr. Mercurio began her career in the marketing department at Nestle USA in Southern California where she worked on projects in their Confections & Snacks Division, Beverage Division, and Infant Nutrition Division. After receiving her doctorate at University of Washington, she worked as a post-doctoral researcher at the University of California, Los Angeles. During this time, she taught in the evening MBA program at California State University, Northridge. She then joined the faculty at University of Oregon and worked there for 6 years. In 2018, Katie joined CSU, Chico as an assistant professor of marketing.

Dr. Mercurio teaches MKTG 305 Survey of Marketing, MKTG 498 Brand Strategy, and MKTG 673 Strategic Marketing Management at CSU, Chico. In the past, she has taught Principles of Marketing, Marketing Research, Sustainability and Marketing, International Marketing, and Consumer Psychology and Brand Strategy at both the undergraduate and MBA levels.

Katie is an active researcher who has eight peer-reviewed publications in refereed journals including Journal of Consumer Research, Advances in Consumer Research, Brand Touch Points, and Wiley International Encyclopedia of Marketing.

Arash Negahban, PhD, MBA

Dr. Arash Negahban is an assistant professor of information systems at the College of Business at California State University, Chico. He received his PhD in Business from the University of North Texas, and he also holds an MBA in Management and a Bachelor of Science in Computer Software Engineering.

Dr. Negahban has several years of experience working in industry as a software engineer, application developer, systems and business analyst, IT project manager, and information systems manager at several IT companies. He has taught many courses in information systems at both undergraduate and graduate levels, particularly business statistics and analytics, information security, and IT strategy.

Dr. Negahban’s research interests include social media and business analytics, mobile technology adoption, information security and privacy, and societal impacts of information technology. His research has been published by numerous academic journals and conferences, including the International Journal of Human-Computer Interaction, Computers in Human Behavior, the Database for Advances in Information Systems, Issues in Information Systems, International Journal of E-Business Research, Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences (HICSS), Americas Conference on Information Systems (AMCIS), Decision Science Institute Annual Conference (DSI), Western Decision Sciences Institute (WDSI), and Southwest Decision Sciences Institute (SWDSI). His papers have been cited by more than 500 studies. In 2018, one of his papers was selected among the top two best papers of the year published by Database for Advances in Information Systems.

Bonnie Persons, JD, MBA, MSM

Bonnie Persons has leveraged her experience as a business lawyer to serve on a number of boards of directors. She achieved the designation of Leadership Fellow with the National Association of Corporate Directors. She has also held leadership positions in academic professional organizations, including time spent serving as the president of the Western Academy of Legal Studies in Business. She divides her time between Silicon Valley and Chico.

In addition to her Juris Doctorate degree from McGeorge School of Law at the University of the Pacific, Bonnie holds a Master of Science in Management degree from Krannert School of Business at Purdue University and a Master of Business Administration from TIAS School of Business, at Tilberg University (The Netherlands). Currently, Bonnie is focusing on support for rebuilding efforts in the aftermath of the devastating Camp Fire.

Tom Wilder, MBA

Tom Wilder is executive director of the SAP University Competence Center (UCC) and lecturer in the Business Information Systems Department in the College of Business at California State University, Chico. A faculty member since January 1997, Tom has taught in three departments in the College of Business, has developed 5 courses, and has taught a total of 24 different courses.

He is a Stanford Certified Project Manager, an SAP Certified Associate, and a certified SAP TS410 and TERP10 instructor. In addition to his teaching, he also writes curriculum for the SAP University Alliance program and teaches faculty members from other institutions how to use SAP in the classroom. He is globally known for his knowledge within SAP systems which include SD, MM, PP, FICO, QM, and PS. As the executive director of the UCC, he meets regularly with his counterparts from around the world.

Tom received his undergraduate degree in industrial technology and a master’s degree in business administration from CSU, Chico. His teaching philosophy is rooted in his background as an industrial designer, which leads him to look for solutions in many different ways in order to reach the best design. He believes in a notion of learning as an engaging, hands-on experience with life-enriching outcomes, and strives to ensure that if a student cannot connect with course material on the first pass, they will on the second or third view.

When not teaching or traveling for business, Tom and his wife Donna restore houses and Airstream trailers. They enjoy Airstream travel with their dog Oliver, hiking, exploration, and golf whenever possible. Tom enjoys his book club, woodworking projects, and being a member of the Elks.

Christine Witt, PhD, MA

Dr. Christine Witt is an assistant professor in the Business Information Systems Department in the College of Business at California State University, Chico. Her primary areas of teaching are business process integration, enterprise resource planning (ERP), and operations and supply chain management in the MBA program. As a certified SAP Business Consultant in ERP Integration of Business Processes and a Level Two Certified ERPsim Instructor and Trainer, she uses her experience to create real-world scenarios in the classroom, whether they are virtual or face-to-face. She has been trained in developing meaningful online learning environments by the IMPACT program at Purdue University, one of the original and most innovative programs for building online class experiences.

Dr. Witt has a passion for entrepreneurship and small business. She has recently worked as a business consultant for the California North Coast Small Business Development Center (SBDC) and assisted businesses with business plan development, product development, test marketing, and LEAN continuous quality improvement implementations. At the SBDC, she launched the “Lean Team,” where she trained other SBDC business consultants on how to implement lean continuous improvement initiatives. Throughout her career, she has held management positions in telecommunication sales and hospitality.

Dr. Witt holds a PhD in Technology from Purdue University and bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Central Michigan University. She is a proud Boilermaker who enjoys watching and attending games from across the country with her family, and she takes her experience working full time and commuting to school at CMU into consideration as she designs her courses for working professionals.

Her publications are in the areas of lean process improvement, Twitter sentiment analysis, learner-centered teaching, simulation learning, and flipped classroom instruction. She has taught in higher education for 11 years and worked on four different campuses (including Central Michigan University, Purdue University, Humboldt State University, and Chico State).

Dr. Witt enjoys taking hikes in Chico’s Bidwell Park, riding on Chico’s many bike trails, and skiing in the Sierra Nevada Mountains. Her other interests include hip-hop dancing, cooking, and gardening.

Suzanna Zivnuska, PhD

Dr. Suzanne Zivnuska is a professor and department chair for the Department of Management at California State University, Chico. Her PhD training in Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management from Florida State University (completed in 2002) prepared her to publish more than 30 academic articles in her career in areas such as organizational politics and impression management, as well as lifestyle issues such as work-family balance, social media use at work, and mindfulness at work. Her teaching encompasses a broad array of topics in human resource management, organizational behavior, conflict and negotiation, and consulting.

Dr. Zivnuska and her daughter love to travel, bring a sense of adventure even to their daily routines, and can often be found in Upper Park or eating sushi. Suzanne is excited to meet you and have you engage in her online community!

Admissions Deadlines

Priority Application Deadline
Spring 2022 Term
Application Deadline
Spring 2022 Term
Next Start
Spring 2022 Term