Skip to main content

Employee Forum Agenda

9:15 a.m.–Meeting: Pleasants Family Assembly Room, Wilson Library

I.   Call to Order & Opening Remarks—Chair Charles Streeter

  • Open call for announcements and questions for the end of the meeting

II.  Welcome to Guests & Members of the Press

III. Special Presentations

  • Matt Fajack, Vice Chancellor for Finance & Administration
    • Matthew M. Fajack, chief financial officer at the University of Florida, was named Carolina’s chief financial officer and vice chancellor for finance and administration, effective June 9.

      Chancellor Carol L. Folt announced the appointment following approval by the Board of Trustees. She selected Fajack after a national search and the work of a search committee led by James W. Dean, Jr., executive vice chancellor and provost. Kevin Seitz has served as interim vice chancellor since October.

      Fajack has served as the University of Florida’s vice president and chief financial officer since 2008. He has been primarily responsible for financial planning and analysis while overseeing the budget process, finance, treasury and accounting. His office implemented significant initiatives to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of administrative processes. He helped design and implement financial systems and processes that centralized a formerly diffuse financial structure and more closely aligned decision making with the financial consequences of those decisions.

      That experience, combined with three previous years as executive director of financial affairs at Kent State University and 14 years as chief financial officer for the Dallas-based Beta Capital Group, positions Fajack well to lead the strategic management of the University’s financial resources, said Folt.

      “He brings not only a wealth of experience at two distinguished public universities, but also a thorough understanding of risk management and administrative services,” she said. “Throughout Matt’s career, efficiency and improvement in business performance have been paramount.”

      As vice chancellor, Fajack will serve as the principal finance and business officer. His responsibilities will include oversight of campus-wide financial planning and budgeting; treasury and risk management; facilities planning, construction and operations; real estate development; purchasing; public safety, environmental health and safety; and energy services.

      Before joining Beta Capital Group in 1990, Fajack spent 11 years in the airline and security systems industries. He was an audit manager for Arthur Anderson & Co. A native of Ohio, Fajack earned a bachelor’s degree in accounting from the University of Minnesota. (

  • Leslie Strohm, Vice Chancellor and General Counsel
    • Leslie Chambers Strohm, who has more than two decades of experience representing research universities, academic medical centers and health care-related clients across North America, was named general counsel at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in July 2003.Strohm came to Carolina from Sonnenschein Nath & Rosenthal, where she was a partner in a 600-member firm that is among the nation’s 85 largest and has offices in St. Louis, Washington, D.C., New York, Chicago, Kansas City, Los Angeles and San Francisco. Before joining Sonnenschein Nath & Rosenthal, she spent eight-and-a-half years in posts including deputy general counsel and acting general counsel at the Washington University in St. Louis, among the top private U.S. research universities.

      As general counsel, Strohm serves as UNC’s principal lawyer. She provides legal advice and counsel to the chancellor, trustees, administrators, faculty, staff and students. Other duties include analyzing laws, regulations, proposed legislation and policies to assess their possible impact. Keeping the campus community informed about legal risks and their management are among other priorities. Strohm will serve as a liaison with the Office of the President, the State Attorney General’s Office and other authorities on legal issues.

      Strohm has strong family ties in North Carolina. Her father, the late Donald Chambers, spent his early years in High Point and other relatives are spread out across the state. 

      At Sonnenschein Nath & Rosenthal, Strohm was on a team focusing on corporate and health-care matters. During her 10-year tenure, Strohm worked on innovative projects that led to the creation of some of the nation’s first integrated health-care delivery systems, joint ventures between publicly traded companies and physicians, and multi-state health-care enterprises. She was also involved in a number of projects for both public and private universities.

      At Washington University from 1984 to 1993, Strohm was instrumental in deliberations resulting in the university’s first policy addressing AIDS and HIV infection as well as a policy and protocol for responding to challenges by animal rights activists. She secured a precedent-setting ruling in the nation’s first campus case to consider if an HIV-infected student should be able to continue his dental studies. She teamed with faculty and administrators on technology-transfer initiatives involving a venture capital company and structured associations among start-up companies, the campus and faculty inventors. She drafted policies on issues such as conflict of interest and academic review for students.

      Strohm compiled “AIDS On Campus: A Legal Compendium” following a review of materials and resources addressing AIDS and HIV infection. It was published in 1991 by the National Association of College and University Attorneys to guide campus administrators and attorneys. She has been a lecturer or presenter at numerous national and state professional meetings. (

IV.    Human Resources Update—Vice Chancellor for Workforce Strategy, Equity, and Engagement Felicia Washington

V.      Approval of June Minutes; July Minutes

VI.     Old Business

VII.   New Business

  •  Swearing-In of New Forum Officers
  • Review Committee Tasks and Organizational Goals for Upcoming Semester

VIII.  Forum Committee Selection of Meeting Times

  • Carolina Blood Drive: Todd Hux
  • Carolina Community Garden Advisory: Arlene Medder
  • Communications and Public Relations: Katie Turner
  • Education and Career Development: Andy Eaker
  • Membership & Assignments: Angela Combs
  • Recognition & Awards:
  • Personnel Issues:  Yvonne Dunlap
    • Compensation & Benefits:  Chrissie Greenberg/Kelli Raker
    • Legislative Action:  Kirk Montgomery
    • Staff Relations, Policies & Practices:  Everett Deloney/Rocky Riviella
  • UNC System Staff Assembly: Michael Highland/James Holman/Charles Streeter
  • Executive Committee: Charles Streeter

IX.     Announcements/Questions

X.      Adjournment


–          Bonita Brown

–          Deborah Bush

–          Ronald Campbell

–          Tiffany Carver

–          Angela Combs

–          Tammy Cox

–          Lois Douglass-Alston

–          Yvonne Dunlap

–          David Fraley

–          Christine Greenberg

–          Shane Hale

–          Victoria Hammett

–          James Holman

–          Todd Hux

–          Karen Jenkins-Cheek

–          Matt McKirahan

–          Arlene Medder

–          Kirk Montgomery

–          Kelli Raker

–          Samara Reynolds

–          Rocky Riviella

–          Charles Streeter

–          Nihlei Tial

–          Katie Turner



Call to Order & Opening Remarks—Chair Charles Streeter

9:16am…meeting called to order.

Matt Banks is absent; Angela Combs taking minutes.

Introductions for new people – many are in attendance as a result of the invitation sent via email by Karen Jenkins.

Introductions around the room:


Andy Eaker

Angela Combs

Arlene Medder


Bonita Brown

Charles Streeter

Cynthia Woodard

David Fraley

Debbie Bush

Evelyn Ross

Gary Moss

Gena Carter

James Bowman

Jasper Becker

Jay Timberlake

Jordan Todd

Karen Jenkins

Katie Turner

Kelli Raker

Kirstie Greenburg

Kristen Lewis

Lakhesh Khullar


Lois Douglass-Alston

Matt Brody

Matt McKirahan

Monica Boswell

Nihleh Tial

Nina James

Rocky Riviella

Ryan Campbell

Samara Reynolds

Sarah Malone

Shane Hale

Tammy Cox

Terri Phoenix

Tiffany Carver

Todd Hux

Victoria Dowd


Yvonne Dunlap



Welcome to Guests & Members of the Press

Comments by Chair:

We are here to represent the staff.  Our meetings are open as we want to engage directly with all campus.  At the end there will be time for questions and issues.    It is alright if guests are here only to listen, but know that questions can always be asked.   The room was surveyed to see if there are any questions at this point of the meeting.

  • In the news:  we may finally have a budget in place.  There has been email communication via listservs.
  • Question:  Are the five (5) days going to be bankable?  Yes.   

–          The 7% doesn’t apply to all teachers; other concessions that aren’t being publicly discussed as much can make this item seem not as appealing as it sounds.

  • Question: What about longevity pay?  It may be lost.  TX and VA put ads in the paper to recruit NC teachers, resulting in about 10 leaving for better opportunities.  Other states recognize that we have great teachers, but less-than-great benefits.
  • Question: Should we be concerned with having longevity taken from all state employees?  We hope not.  If you’re not a member of SEANC, you should consider it, particularly with concerns regarding pay, etc.  We may want to consider having them come to one of our Spring meetings to talk about this.  See David Fraley for SEANC applications.


Special Presentations

Chair remarks: introduction – in building a relationship with our new Vice-Chancellor for Finance and Administration, Matt Fajack.

Matt Fajack:

At the University of Florida, he oversaw about $240 million in cuts over five years – was previously at Kent State where he gained great experience on how to build consensus.  Prior to that, he was at a private equity firm.

Has been here about 60 days – still in the honeymoon period

Has to make some tough choices regarding legislature – i.e. trying to attract business, keep costs of education low, considering raises and budget cuts this year.  Not sure how to implement budget cuts as of yet, since we are not sure what our share of the new budget will be – more information will be coming out shortly.  The budget going forward will keep flat, at best.

Not too many profound ideas yet; but there are some methods and ideas to review and consider.   For example, consider

–        how to increase revenue thru auxiliary operations (online education, etc,), control costs (cost increases), or we

–        may be able to drive some savings out of PeopleSoft.

Probably not going to have prosperous times over the next 3-4yrs.

The decrease in tax from 6% to 5% will impact state revenue for next year.

Affordable Care Act implemented January 1 where employees working 30-40 hours will be insured will probably also have an impact.

With the Board of Governors becoming more active, we hope to see more control over university items while understanding that what they think is right for system could go either way.

This is a great institution; better than he imagined or experienced during his research, especially in being the best value in America (see Kiplinger and Forbes ratings), and having such a beautiful campus.

The people here are great.  You can tell you all have a passion/love for Carolina.

Everyone wants to do what is best for the faculty, staff, coworkers, and students.

Faculty is the heart – staff is backbone;

Will do his best to support us; the door is always open to Charles (and the forum).

  • Question: What are some of your primary job functions?

Answer:  Essentially, I will see how we can improve and how we can better save money.  I will review how things can be made better, thereby more effective, and more efficient.   I will look at how we may be able to better invest our resources, considering our cash needs and cash flow options.  The hope is to maybe get $20-$30 million per year by being more aggressive in cash management (e.g. PeopleSoft).  This also means keeping in close contact with my direct reports.  My job also works a great deal with the auxiliary and business functions.

  • Question:  Regarding the front-end process for PeopleSoft, what is your impression for the process that we’re going through as you see it now? And what do you (& your team) see as your role to enhance training?

Answer:  I see a more helping/facilitating role.  Right now, I bet you’re feeling very stressed.  From what I understand, this was a 3-4 year project.  It appears the functional people were included a bit later than they should have been.  Currently, it seems like we are doing a pretty good job of training.  There will be more coming soon.  Hopefully, we can develop some post-implementation training.  In the meantime, we are creating a helpdesk with HR and some financial people on staff, so there will be a number of people during implementation and post-implementation available as business analysts to help stabilize the process.  Chris could probably give a better explanation.  Best advice – communicate issues so that they can be recorded, and be patient.  We need to work together.

  • Question:  What about the time management system?

Answer:  We are planning to move the timeline to interface with PeopleSoft.  Once we have implemented through PeopleSoft, we will try to interface with the Kronos/TIMS system.  We will also check to see if PeopleSoft can accommodate our needs through their time management system.  We won’t consider this until we are stable in the initial PeopleSoft implementation.

End 09:42 a.m.  [Photo with Chairman]


  • Motion made to go into closed session.

o    We are a public organization, and as such our meetings are open to the public.  Closed sessions are used for honorariums, obtaining legal advice, etc.  A representative from the Legal Department has been invited to answer our questions to make sure we are in compliance.

o    Media must step out – This advice is just directed to us and is not for use by the media.

o    University employees may stay – In being staff of the university; you are a member of the Forum.

  • Motion seconded and approved.


Chair remarks: introducing to the meeting, Vice-Chancellor and General Counsel, Leslie Strohm.

Pursuant to N.C.G.S. Sec. 143-318.11(a)(3), Vice Chancellor and General Counsel Leslie Strohm provided the Forum legal advice on the topic of state employees’ political activities.

  • Motion made to go back into open session.
  • Motion seconded and approved.


Human Resources Update—Vice Chancellor for Workforce Strategy, Equity, and Engagement

Chair remarks: introducing Associate Vice Chancellor for Human Resources, Matt Brody.

Matt Brody:

Vice Chancellor Washington sends her greetings.

Regarding the state budget –

Legislature passed the budget, but it is not yet signed by the governor. The caveat is that when the governor signs it, we still have to wait for a specific memorandum from the Board of Governors.  So we won’t precisely know about implementation until then.

Based on where things stand now, we are looking at $1,000 salary increase on the SPA side across the board, and there do not appear to be any preconditions (disciplinary, etc).

We are unsure of the timing of the effective date (coming from the Office of State Human Resources).

SPA is facing an Oct 1 PeopleSoft update.  The goal is to have the increase input for the PeopleSoft go-live.

We are facing a cut-over period.  Do we want to do the increase in the legacy system or in PeopleSoft?  The plan is to have it ready in legacy.

EPA appears to have money allocated for an increase.  It may be put into a pool where the department decides how to allocate it.

Not sure what it will look like, and there are decisions that have to be made on how it is granted.

  • Question:  Please help clarify your understanding of the budget wording noting the increase for “most EPA.” 

Answer:  Until a memo is received with specifics, we are unable to make such assumptions and cannot interpret what is meant by “most EPA.”


Bonus leave provision of 20 hours.  240 stays the same.  Usually time is given in one of two different methods:

–        Fiscal year bonus leave (use it or lose it by 6/30), or

–        Bonus leave is bankable for as long as you want.  So, when your pay increases over the years, the payout when leaving is more beneficial.  Based on the bill, it appears we may be getting Bonus Leave.  Usually this comes along with a lengthy memo from OSHR detailing how to implement it, since it can create a long-term liability for the state.


Tuition waiver:  the number of courses allowed is increasing from two (2) courses per academic year, to three (3).  We have lobbied for this for a long time, and it has been strongly conveyed to the administration as it has been in our legislative request every year.  We should be offering as much opportunity and access to our employees.

Retirement investment change: effective 8/1/11, the vesting period went from a 5-year requirement to 10-years.  This was changed based on the recruiting and retention perspective.  For a lot of people, it is a lot to give 6% per year for such a long time.  It was presented to the Forum.  We are pleased that they appear to have passed a law bringing the requirement back down to 5-years.  Hopefully, we will make up any ground that we have lost.

Safety concerns:  if you see something in your department that seems unsafe,

–        Engage supervisor and hopefully it is addressed, and/or

–        Call 962-5507 (workplace safety number) to anonymously give safety concerns

You don’t have to wait for supervisor approval/response or be shy.  Employee safety is paramount.

  • Question:   When is the bill active?

Answer:  Bonus leave is effective Sep 1.  Legislative increases have usually been Jul 1.  We want to wait for the memo to dictate this to us.  It will be distributed when received.  The key is in knowing when we are actually able to add it to payroll.  No one loses any money – the first check is a larger check.

EPA side – by the time we get direction, it is usually a bit later.  This usually happens during Oct/Nov.  Those who received longevity pay may receive a separate check.  The delay will be calculated retroactively and added into the check.

  • Question:  How is an SPA employee affected if he/she had an increase prior to Jul 1 and then another increase after Jul 1?

Answer:  The state increase is manually calculated using the salary as of Jun 30.  Salaries are manually input if needed; however, a lot of it is usually programmed to calculate based on the information input.

  • Question:  Under bonus leave, if an employee leaves the university, does that count as 240 he/she can be paid out for? 

Answer:  He/she can get paid out for 240 plus bonus leave.

  • Question:  If an employee is paid under a federal grant, does the money have to be in the grant to pay for his/her bonus leave?

Answer:  I can’t speak to the financial side, but whether it is grant/state/etc, the obligation is there.  What accounting it is charged to is up to the department.  Having money in the grant is between the PI and Dean/Chair.

  • Question:  Does bonus leave have to be paid out?

Answer:  Yes.  Sick leave can be restored.

  • Question:  If the department of an EPA employee has money available, can they actually give the raise (reclassification, additional duties, etc)?

Answer:  Departments used to try to get this to happen around Jul 1.  In recent years, they are addressed as the business need is presented.  This is distinct and considered apart from the state mandated money.  You get anything legislative, and then the department decides if they want to add anything at that time.

  • Question:  Is there any information regarding the new market rate study?

Answer:  Jessica Moore may have more information on that.  Market rates are the salary structure that pins the SPA employee.  We may be moving to some kind of alternative compensation system.  Jessica participates in a working group for the general administration.  Market rates are usually 5-6 years old.

  • Question:  With retirement vesting going back to 5-years, is any of that benefit considered retroactive?

Answer (along with Ashley):  The bill does not specify. We are not telling people that, but it is our understanding.  For example, because the 5 to 10 year change was effective on 8/1/11, if someone started last year, the ORP (Optional Retirement Program) left a gap.  We should be treating current employees as good as, or better than, new employees.  When the change was made to 10-year vesting, SPA employees couldn’t choose ORP (7/1/13), the gap was never addressed.  We could still advocate for it.  A statement was signed saying that ORP is irrevocable.  We have asked for it to at least give people the one-time opportunity.

  • Question:  Regarding recognition and appreciation…

Answer:  Chris is sharing 360 and new management forms for SPA and EPA.  Vice-Chancellor Washington should discuss with the cabinet because there are several new folks here.  We are pursuing this from a technical standpoint.  For the 360, we need to consider anonymity, summaries, etc.  This may not be feasible with thousands of employees.  We have experimented and received feedback.  Will add to Vice-Chancellor Washington’s schedule to give feedback at the next meeting.  We need to put this back in front of leadership.  The target is to put all performance management on-line for next summer.  Preparations are being made.  Confidentiality is more easily managed electronically.

End 10:41 a.m.


Approval of June Minutes; July Minutes


Because of audio/video issues today, we are unable to view minutes on the projection screen.

Question to the group – Did everyone have an opportunity to review June and July minutes and send changes to Matt? Tammy sent in one change (that she attended in June).  No changes in July.


  • Motion made to approve June minutes.
  • Motion seconded and approved. [one (1) abstention.]


  • Motion made to approve July minutes.
  • Motion seconded and approved. [three (3) abstention.]


VI.     Old Business



VII.   New Business

  • Swearing-In of New Forum Officers  Chair decided to postpone until the next executive committee meeting since the Vice-Chair is absent.

Scavenger Hunt:  (see flyer) The goal is to encourage staff to keep up with us on social media.

  • Tammy will distribute cards for the scavenger hunt on Aug 15, 2014.  Katie will send a flyer to post in respective departments to make other staff aware of the event.

Those who have prize vouchers will hide them and then tweet information about where to find them, using the hashtag.  Then the finder fills out the prize voucher and puts it in campus mail.  The winner will be chosen in a drawing (grand prize = Kindle).

Those who cannot participate via Twitter can send a mass email about where the prize voucher can be found.

Winners will be announced on Aug 18, 2014 using the #uncstaff hashtag.

Idea: we should see if we can get the Chancellor (or the Chancellor’s office) to tweet.  Charles will make mention to her.

Suggestions for hiding:  Old Well, some sort of photo clue, put the envelope near something recognizable

Volunteers are needed to help call businesses to see if they are willing to donate a prize for the scavenger hunt.  Send the business’s information to Katie and she will tweet prizes and business contributions as they are received…great publicity and exposure for the business.

Prizes:  so far, we have a Kindle, and ten (10) free lunches/meals.  We are still collecting prizes.

Forum delegates will be doing the tweeting.  If you are tweeting (hiding) a prize, you are unable to win since this is more of a recruitment/recognition type venture.  It is to help employees get to know more about the Forum.

  • Question:  Will you be sending an email including detail of this?

Answer:  You will receive an email with information regarding how to follow on Twitter as well as promotional materials, etc.

  • Question: Will this be sent out on our listserv?

Answer: Yes.  It will include a short script that people can use when calling businesses.

  • Question:  Should we be concerned with delegates using personal twitter accounts for this? 

Answer:  This could be a concern for some who also use it socially.  If you are a delegate, you may pick up followers from the university.

  • Review Committee Tasks and Organizational Goals for Upcoming Semester  – This is being sent back to the committees.  We will pick it up again in two (2) weeks and the document will be ready at the next meeting.  The committees should already have set tasks.


Forum Committee Selection of Meeting Times 

Chair remarks:  each committee should have had one meeting by the end of the month.

  • Carolina Blood Drive: Todd HuxGearing up for employee appreciation day.  The NC State blood drive is on 8/22/14.  We are starting the planning committee for December drive. Please see Todd to join the committee.
  • Carolina Community Garden Advisory: Arlene MedderNew delegates have shown up.  On Aug 14, 2014, we are going before the historic district commission regarding a toolshed.  We have talked to building  and grounds regarding a greenhouse with funding, architecture, and design.  Honey samples were passed out for the first time. 
  • Communications and Public Relations: Katie Turner  – InTouch was published during the prior week and had some really great articles.  Contact Matt Banks if you did not get a copy.  We have new book club selections.  We had a lot of new faces at the last one where we discussed the book “Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead;” hopefully, we can retain a lot of the new people.
  • Education and Career Development: Andy Eaker  – we received feedback to have more centralized committee meetings, so we may be moving to the student union.  Meetings will be held on the fourth (4th ) Wednesday of every month.  We have set an aggressive agenda with great, interesting ideas.  Anyone interested in attending, let Andy know. 
  • Membership & Assignments: Angela Combs meeting will occur soon.
  • Recognition & Awards:  – Michael is the Vice-Chair, so this committee needs a new chair.  See Charles after the meeting if you are interested.  We need to decide on the Three-Legged Stool Award.
  • Personnel Issues:  Yvonne Dunlap – Committee met on Jul 22, 2014.  Personnel Committee meets on the fourth (4th) Tuesday of each month at noon.
    • Compensation & Benefits:  Chrissie Greenberg/Kelli Raker
    • Legislative Action:  Kirk Montgomery
    • Staff Relations, Policies & Practices:  Everett Deloney/Rocky Riviella
  • UNC System Staff Assembly: Michael Highland/James Holman/Charles Streeter –  There are a lot of things that Matt Brody already went over this morning.   The five (5) scale measure will be changing to the three (3) scale. See Gina for more details.  The golf tournament grossed $35,000 profit.  Issues to present to President Ross in the fall from this university.  Charles will make staff assembly meeting information known, as these are open meetings.
  • Executive Committee: Charles Streetersent out through ThinkPosium in May that the Multicultural session is on Aug 13, 2014.  Tammy, Charles, and Katie signed up.  This office is sponsoring.  We contributed $200.  We thought it would be a good idea to have delegates there.  There is an expo on Aug 20, 2014 at the State Fairgrounds from 9am-4pm.  This is for all state employees.  Charles will send more information.  There is a provost meeting in August.  Charles will be sending a request for topics.

End 11:06 a.m.



Chair remarks: open to questions or comments

Comment: It was nice to be invited and have our departments support our attendance.  We encourage sending invitations more often.


Comment:  I’ve been with the university for about 1.5 months and also enjoyed attending.  This is a monthly meeting?

Response:  Yes, at 9:15 a.m.


Comment (Matt McKirahan):  Charles met a while back regarding a professional development grant.  A new draft was sent a week ago.  We expect to know the next steps within the next week, so we should be able to announce more details soon.  The amount decided to allow no more than $1,000 per request with a $2,500 maximum per year.


Comment:  Executive Committee meeting on the third (3rd) Tuesday of each month at 11:30am – 1:30pm.


Comment:  Bonita reached out to the Carolina Club regarding the Tarheel Advantage.  We are not able to use the call-ahead feature for take-out because of the agreement with dining services.  In order to be a member of the Carolina Club and get the $45 price, you must also be GAA (General Alumni Association).  For a total of about $80 per week, you get 10 meals (breakfast and/or lunch) per semester [pro-rated].  Charles may send to listservs that this is coming out.


Comment:  Football tickets – we don’t think this is going to happen.  Matt Banks was asked to reach out to find more information about this, but we have received details noting that a new process is in place and they probably won’t be as easy to acquire as they were in the past.


Comment:  Audio/Video options for meetings – if the camera in this room allows streaming, tele/video conferencing could be considered as an option.  We want to make sure everything is in place, because if we start it, we want to continue it as a consistent practice.  Consider ~ could this discourage attendance?  It would also be nice to have a recording for later.

End 11:14 a.m.



Respectfully submitted,


Angela Combs, Secretary

Comments are closed.