April 16, 2019 Executive Committee Minutes
Attending: Lori Haigh, Shayna Hill, James Holman, Heather Lewis, Karlina Matthews, Angenette McAdoo, Arlene Medder, Alan Moran, Katie Musgrove, Natiaya Neal, Hoi Ning Ngai, Jim Potts, Laura Pratt, Greg Smith, Tracy Wetherby Williams
Chair Shayna Hill called the meeting to order at 12:33 p.m. She recalled making remarks to the University Managers’ Association earlier that month. She noted that she had moved into a new position with Statistics and Operations Research.
The committee discussed the Forum’s budget report, presented by Matt Banks. Karlina Matthews asked that professional development grant recipients receive another reminder concerning their grants. There was a general request that the Forum move its monthly book club to a different location. The committee discussed a possible surplus in the Forum accounts for this year.
The Chair noted that Vice Chair Kathy Ramsey had left the University. She would miss Ramsey immensely. She also asked for help filling her role as planner for the Forum’s effort at the UNC System Staff Assembly’s Chancellor’s Cup golf tournament. Todd Hux volunteered. Katie Musgrove offered the help of the Community Service committee. James Holman noted that UNC-Chapel Hill had been instrumental in acquiring a $10,000 donation from SEANC for the tournament. He hoped that the University would be recognized for its role in obtaining this contribution.
Matt Banks said that the Forum delegate elections had finished that week. He would communicate with newly elected delegates about the April 30th orientation session and the May 1st Forum meeting. The Kay Wijnberg Hovious awards will be presented at the June 12th meeting, which will also feature the Peer Recognition Awards banquet.
Natiaya Neal presented proposed revisions to the Forum’s peer recognition awards criteria and nomenclature. The Executive Committee had agreed in March with these proposals and further offered to increase the number of employees recognized and the prize awarded each. Neal noted that the Recognition & Awards Committee would review candidates the week of May 1st.
The committee discussed planning for the July 10th all-day retreat of the Forum. The Chair noted sentiment on both sides regarding the location of the retreat. She liked using the Outdoor Education Center but granted that some delegates could not undergo the physical activity there. Katie Musgrove also recalled that the time allotted for Forum business in the afternoon last year was limited by the dining arrangements at the Hickory Tavern. Natiaya Neal suggested using centralized locations near or on campus. Karlina Matthews said that a buffet-style menu would work better to allow delegates to begin business without undue delay. Neal said that the Back Bar on Franklin Street could do a preorder of food and would allow private space for Forum business. She recalled that the Hickory Tavern had been too small for the full Forum last year.
The committee agreed with the Chair’s suggestion that she query the full Forum for its opinion on these choices.
Lori Haight had no report from the Communications & Public Relations committee. Natiaya Neal said that the Forum book club would resume in May.
Katie Musgrove said that the Community Service committee will host a tomato planting event at the Community Garden on May 14th, the Carolina Blood Drive on June 4th, and a Habitat for Humanity build on June 7th in Hillsborough.
Hoi Ning Ngai noted that the Education and Career Development committee’s professional development grant program is open to applications through April 30th. Carolina Family Scholarship applications are being accepted through May 31st.
Tiffany Carver of the Membership & Assignments committee noted the work of that group on the Forum elections, new delegate orientation, planning for the May social, and planning for the July retreat. She welcomed any new delegates wanting to serve with her group.
The Chair noted that Rose Thorp of the Personnel Issues committee was gone on maternity leave until the fall. She noted the amount of strong feelings that employees have about last year’s bonus leave system. She hoped that the committee could address these concerns soon. Natiaya Neal noted correspondence with employees about the possibility of donating excess leave to other employees. The Chair said that people who have not used their leave will likely be penalized unless they can manage to use the leave before they retire. Members wondered why the Legislature had structured this leave in such a way as to penalize long-term employees.
Heather Lewis asked if there had been much pushback on the salary compression issue. The Chair confirmed that this question could not be resolved by on-campus Human Resources policies. She noted past discussion with Linc Butler on the question. She asked about the possibility of the committee creating a resolution on this topic. James Holman recalled comments from Matt Brody of the System Office concerning the chances of larger campuses in the State System doing their own salary compression remediation.
The Chair thought that the Forum should partner with the Office of Human Resources on a first draft. She thought that the Forum needs to advance the interests of staff in creation of these resolutions. Angenette McAdoo offered Human Resources’ help to draft a resolution. Alan Moran offered to write a first draft after James Holman’s work in this area.
The Chair lamented that the hard work of Forum committees on these resolutions does not seem to meet with response from the Chancellor’s office. Heather Lewis recalled stories about the adverse weather resolution in the Daily Tar Heel and University Gazette. Alan Moran recalled that Chancellor Emeritus James Moeser would respond directly to the Forum’s resolutions. Katie Musgrove hoped that the Forum could develop better relations with the Chancellor’s office.
Jennifer Standish spoke on the ongoing Forum history project that she had worked on this semester. She though it useful to touch base with the committee. She noted several big issues have recurred in Forum minutes, correspondence and resolutions, including compensation and parking. She hoped to track the success of resolutions and relations between the various Chancellors and the Forum over time. She sought to reach out to delegates before engaging in archival research to insure she was on the right path.
Standish noted Forum-SEANC relations, and interaction with the State Legislature, was also of interest. Katie Musgrove suggested looking into interaction with the Faculty Council as well. She said the faculty had been instrumental in creation of the Forum in the early 1990s. The Chair suggested meeting with various representatives from the Office of Human Resources and the Carolina Black Caucus. Alan Moran suggested speaking with representatives from the Carolina Women’s Center, since that group had been instrumental in starting sexual harassment training and establishing other methods of addressing root causes of campus problems.
The question arose as to whether Standish’s term should be extended. Standish thought that she could finish her work over the summer, with perhaps 15 more hours dedicated to the project. The committee agreed to commit next year’s funds towards this effort.
Alan Moran recalled the collaborative effort that led to the Chancellor’s Task Force for a Better Workplace around ten years ago. The Chair said that this work had led to the creation of the University’s Ombuds office, which had been a great partnership for the Forum.
Members recalled the relatively recent change to the University organizational chart as a representation of declining relations between the Forum and the Chancellor’s Office. The Chair proposed to use the history in resolutions and promotional videos for the Forum.
In the absence of further discussion, the meeting adjourned at 2:31 p.m.
Matt Banks, Recording Secretary