Board of Trustees Meeting Minutes
Wednesday, July 19, 2000
World Trade Center
St. Paul, Minnesota
Trustees Present: Will Antell, Andrew Boss, Nancy Brataas, Brent A. Calhoun, Mary Choate, Daniel G. Coborn, Dennis Dotson, Ivan Dusek, Robert Erickson, Bob Hoffman, Jim A. Luoma, Lew Moran, Joann Splonskowski, Joseph Swanson, Michael Vekich, Chair
Trustees Absent: None
a. Report of Closed Session on Fish et al v. St. Cloud State University et al Litigation
Chair Vekich reported that the Board of Trustees met in closed session to hear an update on the Fish et al v. St. Cloud State University et al. litigation.
b. Approval of Minutes of Board of Trustees Meeting of June 21, 2000
Trustee Robert Erickson moved approval of the minutes of June 21, 2000. Trustee Dotson seconded and the minutes were approved without dissent.
c. Proposed Meeting Calendar FY 2001
Chair Vekich commented that the proposed meeting schedule for FY 2001 is an information item. The Board will approve the meeting schedule at their annual meeting on September 20.
d. Election of Officers at Annual Meeting on September 20, 2000
Chair Vekich announced that the election of officers will occur at the Annual Board meeting in September. The positions are: chair, vice-chair, secretary, and treasurer. Nominations or declarations of intent to run may be announced at the July meeting, and candidates have until August 21 to declare their intentions in writing. In addition, nominations for officer may be made from the floor at the annual meeting.
Chair Vekich explained that the office of secretary is a function of the Executive Director/Board Secretary's position. He nominated Penny Harris Reynen for another term as the secretary. Trustee Choate nominated Nancy Brataas as treasurer. Trustee Splonskowski nominated Trustee Erickson for vice-chair. Trustee Erickson declined the nomination. Trustee Luoma nominated Trustee Boss as vice-chair. Trustee Erickson nominated Chair Vekich for another term as chair.
Trustee Luoma suggested several changes to the current procedure for the election of officers. The first change related to changing the title of vice-chair to chair-elect. Secondly, he proposed holding the elections following the fiscal year, so that elections would occur in July and take effect on August 1. This would give the new officers the entire month of August to plan for the transition. Lastly, Trustee Luoma suggested a maximum of two one-year terms for any one office.
There was a lengthy discussion. Trustee Brataas explained that the Board used to elect officers in July but decided to change it to September. The change to September elections allowed some time for the new "Board" to become better acquainted. Trustee Brataas commented that it would be inappropriate to require a maximum of two one-year terms. Trustee Brataas continued that with respect to the chair-elect suggestion there have been times that the trustees serving as vice-chair were neither qualified or desired to become chair.
Trustee Boss explained that having the election closer to the ending and beginning of the fiscal year makes more sense and would be a more convenient time. September elections with October 1 effective dates seem an awkward time. The position of chair-elect has value in that there is stability in leadership but it does not perpetuate leadership for too long a time. Trustee Boss continued that he supports the nomination of Chair Vekich to continue as leadership while we are in the process of change in leadership within MnSCU.
Trustee Erickson spoke in favor of changing the officer elections to the July meeting because it coincides with the natural, year-end cycle. He continued that with respect to the chair-elect position, one of the Board's most important roles is to establish continuity. He commented that he appreciated Trustee Splonskowski's nomination of him as vice-chair, but with only two years left on the Board he feels it is inappropriate for him to continue as vice chair in order to encourage opportunities for new leadership. Trustee Erickson commented that if the Board sets a precedent by establishing two one-year terms, then it should be an exceptional procedure.
Trustee Choate commented that she learned of her appointment to the Board of Trustees in June 1998, just a week or so before she began to serve her term in July, and that she would have been uncomfortable with July elections. She prefers June because it coincides with the end of the fiscal year.
Responding to a question, Chair Vekich explained that student trustees are fully eligible to run for any office.
Trustee Moran commented that he supports the suggestion of a chair-elect because it provides for transitioning policy making with a set of goals, expectations and missions rather than the individual whims of any one particular chair. With respect to the two-year term limit, his preference is to not make it a policy if the Board's understanding is that this position will rotate.
Trustee Dusek commented that the advantage of electing officers in June or July would give the incoming chair a month or more to prepare for taking office, unless it is a re-election. He commented that he does not favor making a policy on the length of officers' terms. He also stated that he has no preference on vice chair or chair-elect.
Trustee Antell commented that he is not opposed to a chair-elect or changing the timing of the elections. He is opposed to the to establishment of a two-year term. Trustee Antell commented that he has no objections to chair-elect or changing the date of the elections.
Trustee Brataas expressed that she believes that June and July are too soon to hold elections and that the newly appointed Trustees should elect the new officers. Trustee Brataas commented that she is absolutely opposed to June; July could work, but preference is for September. Trustee Brataas does not favor the chair-elect, is opposed to two-year terms, and hopes that the Board will not approve them.
Trustee Dotson agreed with Trustee Brataas about keeping the elections in September. He is opposed to the chair-elect because it preempts other Trustees from participating in the process. He is strongly in favor of two-year limit on terms.
Trustee Hoffman commented that from a practical point of view a July election would give the Chair time in August (when there are no scheduled meetings) to prepare for the upcoming year. He likes the idea of a chair-elect because as a Board the chair is a leadership position, but not the sole leadership position, as every one of the fifteen members are leaders. The two-year limit can be treated as a guideline and be an exception, if necessary.
Trustee Splonskowski commented that elections in June or July would not make a big difference. With respect to the two-year limits, student trustees' terms are for two years, so, in effect they would be prohibited from holding an officer position. She does not favor the two-year limits for this reason.
Chair Vekich referred the discussion to the Sub-committee on Trustees, and charged them with making recommendations at the Executive Committee meeting in September, which in turn will be forwarded for discussion at the September Board meeting. The elections of officers will occur at the September Board meeting.
e. Report of the Executive Committee Meeting of July 5, 2000 Chair
Vekich reported that the Executive Committee met on July 5, 2000.
Chair Vekich reported that the Board of Trustees has a shared governance relationship with Fond du Lac Tribal and Community College. Chair Vekich has served as the Board's liaison to the college for the past year, and that effective today Trustee Antell will be the new liaison.
Chair Vekich highlighted noteworthy events on several Minnesota State Colleges and Universities campuses. Minnesota West held a press conference at the Jackson Municipal Airport to officially announce the new Aviation AAS Professional Pilot major. Bemidji State University is hosting its 53rd annual MusiCamp on its campus this summer from July 16-29. Metropolitan State University Professor Kenneth Zapp, professor of economics and finance in the College of Management, has been appointed to serve as the Republic of Slovenia's honorary consul in Minnesota.
On August 1, Metropolitan State University Foundation will hold its first-ever golf event hosted by Minnesota Viking Greg Coleman, who is also a member of the Foundation Board. Hibbing Community College's Center for Lifelong Learning is offering training and refresher courses to employees facing layoff as a result of the closing of LTV Steel. Northwest Technical College received ten-year accreditation from North Central Association. Finally, the 3rd Annual MnSCU system office picnic was held on July 14 and was a big success.
Update on Chancellor Search
Executive Director Reynen provided an update on the chancellor search. She reported that the search is on schedule. The Search Advisory Committee met for the first time in June and developed a search document. The committee will meet again in August to deliberate on how they will review applications. In September the committee will review applications, and in October they will conduct airport interviews. In November, the field of candidates will be narrowed and names of finalists will be forwarded to the Board of Trustees in December.
Executive Director Reynen announced that the position was advertised in the Chronicle of Higher Education on July 14, and will appear again on July 21. It has also been advertised in the St. Paul Pioneer Press, Minneapolis Star Tribune, Rochester Post-Bulletin, Duluth News Tribune, and Fargo Forum. The advertisement will appear also in trade papers and journals and on MnSCU's employment website. The Search Advisory Committee invites nominations and applications that should be sent directly to A. T. Kearney, Inc.
b. Audit Committee
c. Personnel Policy Committee
Michael Vekich, Chair
Recorded by Penny Harris Reynen