"I'm moving out of the classroom and the newsroom and into the conference room," said journalism professor Felix Gutierrez after being named the first dean of academic services and special programs at USC's College of Letters, Arts and Sciences.

"We want to identify good students earlier and establish strong relationships with them, their teachers and their parents," said Gutierrez. Born in Lincoln Heights, Gutierrez has been a USC faculty member since 1979, and was executive director of the California Chicano News Media Assn.

The East Los Angeles-based Banda Ninos Heroes is modeled after the town band in Chapala, Mexico. But the band in Chapala is now without a tuba. "The tuba is the heart of the band, giving the beat and the harmony," said Manuel Luna, director of the East L.A. band made up of Chapalans and their children.

So far, fund-raisers have netted just under $2,000, half the cost of a new tuba. Luna, who is reachable at (213) 721-9625, vows to continue the fund-raisers until a tuba is once again part of the Chapala town band's marches, ballads and rancheras.

While working for MALDEF and Los Angeles' Western Center on Law and Poverty, Carmen A. Estrada was often the attorney bringing employment discrimination suits.

"Now I'm in the position of advising a large institution on how to avoid those lawsuits," said Estrada, director of affirmative action at the University of California. She is responsible for affirmative action in university contracting and hiring and promotion of the 100,000 non-teaching staff members. "I'll be trying to improve the recruitment of women and minorities at the executive level," she said. "I've been favorably impressed with the university's commitment to making changes."

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