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Governance Minutes Archive

November 1, 1993

  Faculty Senate Cabinet


  November 1, 1993

  Accepted by the Faculty Senate:  November 16, 1993


  Present:  William E. Barbeau, Don G. Creamer, David A. de Wolf

            Timothy G. Gregoire, Michael T. Lambur,

            Marilyn L. Norstedt, Peter K. Shires, N. Larry Shumsky,

            Robert T. Sumichrast


  Guest:    Jerry Cain, Legal Council to Virginia Tech





       David de Wolf informed the Cabinet of a speech given by the

       President of James Madison University (JMU) which was

       critical of the JMU Faculty Senate.  The speech suggested

       that the JMU Faculty Senate abolish itself.  David de Wolf

       informed the Cabinet that Virginia Tech's interim president,

       Paul Torgersen does not share this view of Faculty Senates.

       Mike Lambur suggested that we not take actions based on this

       report since we do not know what lead to the speech.  Bill

       Barbeau said that the case may simply be another case of

       opportunistic faculty bashing and should not be interpreted

       to mean that most people view faculty in this light.




       Jerry Cain, Legal Council for the University, informed the

       Cabinet of the state's actions in one case of alleged age

       discrimination regarding tenure and salary.  In the past,

       grievances by faculty members have been settled by the

       university, rather than by state agencies.  This time, a

       faculty member has filed cases with both university and state

       agencies.  The Virginia Department of Personnel and Training

       has refused a request from Virginia Tech to defer judgment to

       Tech.  This agency has cited an executive order from Governor

       Wilder as authority to proceed.  Mr. Cain said that the

       executive order was in conflict with state statutes

       concerning the matter and that Virginia Tech believed it

       should not accept the power of the state agency to interfere

       in this matter.  No judgments have been handed down by any of

       the parties involved in this case.  Mr. Cain said that Dr.

       Torgersen wanted to keep the Faculty Senate informed of the

       University's position on this matter and wanted to know of

       any facility disagreement with the university's position.


       Mr. Cain expanded on the particulars of the case in response

       to questions.  There appeared to be unamious support of the

       university's position by the Cabinet.





       David de Wolf reported that the Ethics committee is in the

       final stages of preparing its report.  It will be discussed

       when available.  Peter Shires, a member of the committee,

       noted that the Ethics Committee procedures, included in the

       report, are considerably more detailed than those included in

       Section in the Faculty Handbook.  The Cabinet

       discussed various means of making the procedures available to

       faculty once complete.  Larry Shumsky noted that including

       complete procedures as part of the Faculty Handbook was

       cumbersome.  A possible solution was to distribute procedures

       in the back of the handbook without making them part of the

       handbook.  Another solution would be to keep the procedures

       on-line and refer to them in the handbook.




       Last week, David de Wolf has asked past-presidents of the

       Faculty Senate and Cabinet members for opinions concerning

       the possibility of Paul Torgersen becoming the University's

       president on a permanent basis.  He reported finding strong

       support for Torgersen among those in favor, and largely

       problems with circumventing procedure with those not in

       favor.  Several respondents were not in favor, based on

       personal rather than procedural reasons.  David shared these

       views with Henry Dekker, President of the University Board of

       Visitors.  Mr. Dekker was pleased to receive faculty

       feedback.  He said he would attempt to gather a more complete

       gauge of faculty opinions in the next several weeks.  He also

       assured Dr. de Wolf that the normal search procedures would

       be followed.  The Cabinet discussed the importance of helping

       Dr.  Torgersen be more effective with state legislators.  It

       was suggested that Dr.  Torgersen would be more effective

       with legislators if they understood that he might be appointed

       to the position permanently.  It was suggested that Dr.

       Torgersen be asked to publicly express his willingness to

       serve as president.




       There was strong support for asking Interim President

       Torgersen to speak at the December Faculty Senate meeting.

       Dr.  Torgersen has expressed interest in addressing the

       Senate.  This meeting would provide those faculty who do not

       know Dr.  Torgersen, an opportunity to learn his agenda first

       hand.  Bill Barbeau suggested asking Charles Steger to come

       as a second speaker on the same night.  Further, he suggested

       that Dr.  Steger be asked to discuss the university's long

       awaited fund raising campaign.  If Dr.  Torgersen is

       unavailable that night, Larry Shumsky suggested that we ask

       Henry Dekker to come and address the Senate concerning the

       university's search for a new president.




       Leon Geyer has agreed to chair the effort looking into setting

       up a political action committee or similar organization for

       the faculty.




       David de Wolf gave a brief report on the rally organized the

       campus students in cooperation with students across Virginia.




       The University Advisory Council on Strategic Planning and

       Budgeting may be asked to help make recommendations

       concerning budget reallocations.  Potentially, these

       decisions will include programmatic reductions.  David de

       Wolf has recommended that the Provost include greater faculty

       participation in these decisions.  The provost suggested that

       Dr. de Wolf present a plan for augmenting the Advisory

       Council.  The Cabinet discussed elements which such a plan

       should include.  A desire for diverse representation was

       expressed as was the possibility for a greater role by

       members of the College Faculty Associations.  David de Wolf

       will take this matter up in the next Senate Officers meeting.




       Two committees still need representatives.  David de Wolf

       will make appointments.


  Respectfully submitted,


  Robert T. Sumichrast

  Secretary, Faculty Senate


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