Faculty Council weighs in on vice presidential search process

Regents’ Laws and Policies Committee now revisiting change as proposed

A proposed change to the Board of Regents’ policy regarding searches for vice president positions is being reconsidered following objections from the Faculty Council Executive Committee.

The regents’ Laws and Policies Committee has been revisiting Policy 3.E, specifically aspects related to the search processes for president, chancellors, and officers and exempt professionals – or vice president positions.

One of the proposed changes would have altered specifics about the search for vice presidents, stipulating that Faculty Council specifically would have representation on the search committee for vice president of academic affairs, but not necessarily be represented on search committees for other vice presidents.

But following objections by Faculty Council leadership, many of whom attended the March 3 Laws and Policies Committee meeting at 1800 Grant St., the committee is reconsidering the change and has asked Patrick O’Rourke, secretary to the board, to redraft the language.

“The Laws and Policies committee has been extremely receptive to our input,” said Faculty Council Chair Melinda Piket-May, during the March 6 meeting of the Faculty Council.

She and other leaders from Faculty Council attended the committee meeting and also signed, with the Faculty Council Executive Committee, a letter to the regents’ committee articulating the objection to the proposed change.

The letter reads in part: “All Vice-Presidents are a vital part of the University of Colorado (CU) and as such they have a significant impact, direct or indirect, on the entire mission and vision of the university including education, research, service, and health care. Individuals supporting our mission should be a part of any hiring process for key individuals that will contribute to it. The purpose of shared governance is to give all interested stakeholders meaningful roles to contribute towards the success of our institution – success that includes both academic and administrative functions.

“We strongly feel that faculty, through shared governance, should have input into administrative hires.”

The changes were set in motion in order to articulate the need for greater flexibility and expedience administration felt was necessary during key searches.

Regarding that issue, the letter reads, “We understand the University would like to be more nimble in hiring vice-presidents. Faculty Council can work to respond in a timely manner so as not to uphold hiring processes. We strongly feel that Vice Presidents and other executive leaders serve a critical role towards the success of our core missions and therefore we should have a part in the process.”

Read the full letter here.

In other activity at the March 6 Faculty Council meeting:

  • The council viewed a presentation on the recently redesigned, the systemwide website. Ken McConnellogue, vice president of communication, and Cathy Beuten, multimedia editor, detailed the improvements and walked the council through the faculty-focused aspects of the site.
  • During her regular report to the council, E. Jill Pollock, vice president, Employee and Information Services, said her office will soon begin a review of the universities optional retirement plan and 403B benefits, including whether available options are too many or too few. She said next year’s health plan rates are expected to be available later this month. This summer, she said, a new children’s wellness program will be offered to dependents of faculty and staff.