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Good week: The University of Arkansas System 

July 13-19

It was a good week for...

THE UNIVERSITY OF ARKANSAS SYSTEM. The University of Arkansas Board of Trustees chose Dr. Donald Bobbitt as the next president of the UA system after interviewing three other candidates. The current provost at the University of Texas at Arlington, Bobbitt is a former dean of the Fulbright College of Arts and Sciences at the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville. His relative youth — he's 54 — and his current deep experience as a top college administrator figured into remarks by Board chairman Dr. Carl Johnson about how Bobbitt had distinguished himself in the group of four candidates.

ARKANSAS TROOPER ANDREW RHEW. The Arkansas State Police Commission ruled unanimously to reinstate the trooper, who was fired as a result of a fatal crash in which his patrol car collided in Manila with a car driven by Vickie Freemyer, a Blytheville teacher, while Rhew was rushing to a call in Osceola.

It was a bad week for...

DUSTIN MCDANIEL. The attorney general's office spent $6,000 on a brief video in which McDaniel announced at a State Police awards ceremony his decision to take $700,000 won in a lawsuit against drug companies to give to the State Police Foundation to pay for a classroom building at the State Police shooting range. McDaniel was in Hawaii at the time of the awards lunch.

THE ARKANSAS FARMING COMMUNITY. Stanley Reed, the 59-year-old former president of the Arkansas Farm Bureau, died in an auto accident Friday near Augusta as he returned to his farm. A former University of Arkansas trustee, Reed was one of the finalists to lead the University of Arkansas System.

THE ARKANSAS HIGHWAY AND TRANSPORTATION DEPARTMENT. A Legislative Audit report found that members of the department's legal division have been improperly getting a half-day off, with pay, every three weeks, and an additional two hours paid time off for doctor appointments and "personal errands" dating back to 1989. The auditors refer their findings to the Pulaski County prosecuting attorney.

THE RIVER MARKET DISTRICT. A Little Rock police officer shot a man pointing a gun at him at 2 a.m. Sunday morning at Markham and Scott streets. Moments earlier another man was shot in the foot after a fight broke out among a large crowd. Police say they'll be more vigilant about dispersing large groups.

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