Saturday, October 27, 2007

Guv signs state budget bill

I see that the Governor signed the compromise budget bill with very few vetos yesterday. Like any compromise there are things about it I think are good and things I think are bad, but at least we know where we stand and that's good. I'm glad he and Assembly Speaker Mike Huebsch could work it out. Click here if you want to view the budget signing ceremony with UW Chancellor Wiley, UW President Reilly, Gov. Doyle, Sen. Robson and Reps. Huebsch and Kreuser courtesy of WisPolitics.

Our friends at ASPRO tell me that Gov. Doyle did veto out the provision in the budget that would have required campuses to identify whether the teacher of a particular class is "a tenured or probationary faculty member, a member of the academic staff, or a teaching assistant" when they register for the class. It was a bad provision and didn't belong in the budget bill anyway. Whomever tried to sneak it in should go through the normal process and have a hearing on the merits of doing it!

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Chair's Report for October 2, 2007 meeting

Greetings! It is already starting off to be another busy year. I first want to thank Joy Evenson for many years of service to the senates. Joy's last day with us was last Friday and she is now serving as Administrative Assistant to the ROTC program. I'd also like to welcome Janelle Reitz who is now the senate secretary. Jenelle has lots of energy and I'm sure will do a great job for both senates!

So, with that said, following are the meetings and activities I wish to report this month:

August 29: Chancellor Sorensen invited the senators to a bit of a reception at his home. It was a great and relaxing way for us to start the year and we thank the Chancellor for his hospitality and his support of shared governance!

August 30: The Faculty Senate leaders and I gave Chancellor Sorensen and Provost Furst-Bowe the results of the senates evaluation of them. This was the first year for evaluating the Provost. Both leaders were very receptive to the feedback offered.

August 31: I attended the Provost Council Retreat to talk about the realignment models. There was a good discussion and the models are currently being taken to the campus Feedback Sessions. Like last year I plan to be at as many of these sessions as possible to hear firsthand the comments from the campus community.

September 4: I assisted with Laptop Deployment. It is amazing how smooth this process runs thanks to the efforts of Jane Henderson, Margy Ingram, and countless other Academic Staff, Faculty and classified staff who help with it!

September 5: I was thrilled to attend 2 student events – Meet Menomonie and the Multicultural Student Services Picnic. Both events were again fantastic and I would encourage you next year to make some time to get to both events and visit with our students.

September 10: Chancellor's Advisory Council met and at that meeting Drew Barrette of SSA described the students' interest and commitment to the American College & University Presidents' Climate Commitment project; and their recommendation that the Chancellor sign the Presidents' Climate Commitment. Diane Moen reported that a new half-time Environmental Sustainability Coordinator has recently been appointed (Raina Clark), and described the responsibilities of that position. She also reviewed a draft proposal for a UW-Stout Environmental Sustainability Steering Committee. The Chancellor's Advisory Council recommended that the Chancellor sign the Presidents' Climate Commitment for UW-Stout's participation in the program.

Richard Tafalla reported that the Minority Faculty and Staff Network is requesting formal university recognition and described the proposed committee establishment. There was discussion as well if this might be considered as a separate committee within the governance structure. The personnel type issues listed under goals/objectives could be appropriately connected to governance groups. Richard commented that network members have discussed the importance of maintaining their autonomy and feel it is essential to retain the direct contact with administration that currently exists.

The Chancellor reviewed a proposed draft administrative ethics statement for the university community. There have been a number of discussions and comments on this topic including a proposal by a Jeff Russell group that was reviewed by both the Faculty Senate and the Senate of Academic Staff. I will share this draft with the senate at our next meeting.

Other discussion items included: Donna Weber reviewed the strengths and opportunities included in the ESURC Report of the Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Office. Meridith Wentz provided an overview of the 2006-07 ACT Student Opinion Survey Report. Janice Coker reviewed the report, including the recommendations by the Honor's Taskforce. Discussion will continue at our next CAC meeting.

September 11: I attended the 9-11 event and congratulate the student organizations who put on a very good non-partisan program. I also was invited to be a guest server at the "Great American Cookout" along with the other campus leaders. Not only was it a pleasure to "physically serve" the students at this wonderful event, but it was also great to visit with some of the students while I took a meal break.

September 13: I met with Provost Furst-Bowe on this date as my first regular monthly meeting. As always it was a good meeting and I feel good that we can have this kind of open dialog with the administration! In the evening I represented the senate at the Foundation Donors Reception and the Scholarship Awards Ceremony. A couple of great events. It was inspiring to see our best and brightest walking across the stage to receive their scholarships!

September 14: Most of this day was taken up with Foundation Board meetings. My remarks focused on three things I feel we want to focus on this year: (1) How we can partner with the campus to leverage our new "polytechnic designation", (2) the program re-alignment process, and (3) continuing to work closely with the faculty senate and strengthening our relationship with the Stout Student Association.

September 17: Completed work on the Vice Chancellor for University Advancement and Marketing Search Committee. The Chancellor offered the position to David Williams. We look forward to working with Mr. Williams.

September 18: After our Senate Executive Committee met we went into the Faculty Senate Listening Session for a few minutes. Then during the break Faculty Senate Chair Jerry Kapus and I presented Joy Evenson with a plaque from both of our senates to commemorate her service with us. After that we had our Senate Feedback session. I thought it went well and I was glad we had some very thoughtful comments!

September 19: I attended another listening session.

September 20: I traveled to Madison to attend the Academic Staff Reps Council (ASRC) meeting. These are important meetings as it is very important that we keep in touch with the Academic Staff at the other campuses as well as take advantage of having frank discussions with the administrators at System. Minutes from these meetings are not out yet so I will report details in my next report but let me say that I did distribute copies of the UW-Stout Senate of Academic Staff's recent resolution against the Senate Budget collective bargaining provision. ASRC Chair Dave Carlson (UW Colleges) and I urged campus governance organizations to pass resolutions similar to UW-Stout's.

September 21: I participated in the Academic Staff Professionals Representation Organization (ASPRO) Board Meeting Teleconference. As you know from my reports last year, ASPRO is not a union but provides lobbying for Academic Staff. The highlight of these meetings is always getting a Legislative Update. ASPRO President Bill Steffenhagen (UW-Madison) asked me to give a review of the ASRC meeting and share information about our resolution.

ASPRO Lobbyists Kilgore and Swandby reviewed the current status of the State Budget and shared "behind the scene" stories. Swandby reviewed the emails ASPRO has sent to legislators and the email sent by Representative Jon Richards to all legislators urging them to sign on to a letter supporting the collective bargaining provision. UW-Milwaukee members were encouraged to contact Representative Richards and Barndt stated she will be meeting soon with him.

At the end of the meeting the officers were elected and I'm pleased to report that I was re-elected as Board Vice President.

Later in the day of the 21st, I met with Faculty Senate Chair Jerry Kapus and SSA President Mike Lubke. We started these meetings between the 3 governance chairs last year and I was pleased that we can continue these meetings with this year's leaders! We spent over an hour talking about what the students hope to accomplish this year. Sounds like they have some great leadership this year and I'm pleased we will be able to work with them!

September 24: The Chancellor's Administrative Leadership Team met. The agenda for this meeting included a discussion of the attached article – The Geography of Trust – from the Harvard Business Review. We broke into small groups for discussion before coming back together to "report out" to the entire team. It was a good exercise!

September 25: I met again with Provost Furst-Bowe who asked me to Chair the Dean of Students' Search. This is another important position to the campus and I am honored to represent our senate while leading the search committee.

September 26: Attended 2 more Listening sessions.

September 28: This day started early (7am) with the first Access to Learning (ATL) meeting of the year. The ATL committee make up mainly of students, the deans, and governance leaders makes decisions on how to distribute Access to Learning funds, so another very important committee! Later that morning I sat in on the beginning of the UW System Diversity Climate Assessment Teleconference. Our rep was Senator Wendy Knutson and she participated in the entire session, but again this is an important topic and I was pleased to be able to participate in a good portion of the meeting. I left that teleconference to represent the senate on the Polytechnic Steering Committee. We spent the bulk of the meeting revising a draft of the "tenants" of our polytechnic. We really want to give faculty and staff something that can be put on a business card to explain what we are as a polytechnic university.

September 29: My wife (Lisa) and I had the honor of being invited to join the Alumni Foundation for an outing in Madison. In total there were 22 of us who participated in a reception at the home of UW President Kevin Reilly. We then went to see the UW-Michigan State game at Camp Randall. It was quite an exciting day!

Well, that's all for now. Hope to see you all at the Senate meeting on Tuesday!

Dennis Shaw, 2007-2008 Chair
Senate of Academic Staff

Chair's Report for September 4, 2007 meeting

Greetings! Wow, summer is over and we are ready to start another exciting year. I thought it was great after the Chancellor's Opening Remarks that the Provost recapped what we, together, have accomplished over the past 20 years. UW-Stout is indeed a special place!

Last year was extremely busy for the senates and I believe this year will also be a busy one. All one has to do is look at the agenda for our first meeting and see that we will be hitting the ground running. We have had a busy summer with our reps serving on the Chancellor's Strategic Planning Group summer retreat, a number of us traveling to UW-Superior for the Academic Staff Leadership Conference, a productive summer meeting of the senate, and getting everything set for the 2007-2008 year.

I will continue the "office hours" I had in the Senate office last year. I will be in my 11 Harvey Hall office on Mondays from 8am-10am and Thursdays from 10am-12noon. I will likely be there other times also but thought it worked well to have established times when I plan to be there. Call the senate office at x1352 if you want to set up an appointment.

I look forward to working with you all.

Dennis Shaw, 2007-2008 Chair
Senate of Academic Staff

Welcome to our SAS Chair blog

Welcome to our blog for the senate chair. Last year I did a monthly report that I sent out on campus via email. This year I wanted to try a blog and see if this helps not only let the senate and campus know what I have been up to but also to spread the word about what the Senate of Academic Staff is doing. Please feel free to contact us at the senate office (11 Harvey Hall) if you have questions or concerns.


Note: 2006-2007 Chair reports can be viewed online at: