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WINTHROP UNIVERSITY BOARD OF TRUSTEES

June 4 and 5, 2009
1:00 pm
Dunlap-Roddey Room, Johnson Hall
Winthrop University
Rock Hill, South Carolina

Members present:  Kathy Bigham (Chair), Frances Davenport, Karl Folkens, Janet Smalley, Jane LaRoche, Susan Smith-Rex, Donna Tinsley, Lee Cox. Dalton Floyd,  David Vipperman, Sam Foster, Bob Thompson, Anthony J. DiGiorgio (ex officio)

Members absent:  One vacancy—First Congressional District Seat

Representatives present:  Sydney Evans, Student Representative; Cheryl Fortner Wood, Faculty Representative

Representatives absent:  None

Others present:  Faculty and staff of Winthrop University, Matt Garfield, The Herald

The Board of Trustees met on Thursday, June 5 and Friday, June 6, 2008 on the campus of Winthrop University, Rock Hill, SC.

Call to Order

Chair Bigham called the meeting to order at 4:10 p.m. on June 4. Lee Cox made a motion for the Board to move into Executive Session, Frances Davenport seconded. The Board met in executive session for the purpose of the contractual and personnel matter of reviewing the recommendations of the Executive Committee on the performance evaluation of President DiGiorgio. David Vipperman moved the Board return to public session with no actions taken. The motion was seconded by Janet Smalley.  The motion passed unanimously by voice vote.  At that time, the meeting was recessed with continuation planned for the afternoon of June 5.

As there were no requests made for public comments, the meeting continued on June 5, 2009 at 1:06p.m.

Approval of Board Minutes of April 17, 2009

Bob Thompson made a motion to approve the minutes from the meeting of April 17, 2009. The motion seconded by Lee Cox. The minutes were approved unanimously as presented.

Report of the Executive Committee and Chair of the Board

Chair Bigham reported that the Executive Committee had met on campus on May 20, 2009.  Several matters were reviewed and discussed.  The materials from the meeting have been forwarded to each of members of the Board.   Chair Bigham asked that the Board consider a number of resolutions for meritorious service:

Resolution Honoring Ms. Tatiana Sosa for Meritorious Service to Winthrop University.  Janet Smalley, Chair of the University Relations Committee read aloud the citation honoring Ms. Sosa for her one year of service to the Board.  The resolution passed unanimously.

Resolution Honoring Dr. Cheryl Fortner-Wood for Meritorious Service to Winthrop University.  Lee Cox, Chair of the Academic Affairs Committee read aloud the citation honoring Dr. Fortner-Wood for her two years of service to the Board.  The resolution passed unanimously. 

Chair Bigham then asked that the Board consider a number of resolutions pertaining to the performance evaluation and contract of President DiGiorgio:

Resolution Regarding Performance Evaluation of President Anthony J. DiGiorgio.  Based upon the recommendation of the Executive Committee of the Board and input from the Faculty Representative to the Board as well as individual Trustees, the Board recommended the President receive an “Exceeds Expectations” evaluation.  The resolution passed unanimously.

Resolution Regarding Contract of President Anthony J. DiGiorgio.  Again, based on the recommendation of the Executive Committee of the Board and input from the Faculty Representative to the Board as well as individual Trustees, the contract of President Anthony DiGiorgio was extended for an additional year.  The resolution passed unanimously.

As the last resolution to be put forth from the Executive Committee, the Chair asked the Board to consider a Resolution Regarding Amendments to the Board Bylaws supporting the implementation of the restructuring of the committees of the Board as a significant element of the Board’s ongoing commitment to institutional progress and development.  With this action, the former University Relations Committee was recast as two separate committees, Committee on Institutional Advancement and Development and the Committee on Student Life.  The resolution passed unanimously.

Report of the Academic Affairs Committee

The next order of business was the report of the Academic Affairs Committee.  After reminding the Board that each has received a complete set of briefing notes from all of the committees, Committee Chair Lee Cox read aloud the Resolution to Confer Emeritus Faculty Status on selected retired faculty.  The resolution passed unanimously to confer emeritus status to:  William W. Grigsby, Jr; Richard C. Ingram; Gloria A. Kelley; Richard L. Morris; John E. Robbins; Johnny Sanders, Jr.; John M. Schmidt; and Han Vo.

He continued by reporting on the results of the recent tenure and promotion process that resulted in 17 faculty receiving tenure and 13 promotions.  He noted being impressed with the tenure procedures leading to the final decision.  The stated the process is so thorough and consistent and that faculty are well advised throughout the process and very few do not have a positive outcome.

Chair Cox recommended the Trustees give serious consideration to the Arts and Sciences undergraduate research booklet as it is a wonderful representation of remarkable work being done on the Winthrop campus by students and their faculty mentors.

The report concluded with Chair Cox’s account of the presentation on University College by Dean Gloria Jones.

Report of the Finance Committee

As the next order of business, Karl Folkens, Chair of the Finance Committee brought forth a Resolution to Empower the Executive Committee with the Authority to Adopt the Tuition Schedule and Operating Budget for 2009-20010.  The committee brought forth this resolution because the future use of stimulus funds remains unclear. Without the stimulus monies, Winthrop will have to immediately adapt operating budgets to reflect the lowered state appropriations projected for fiscal year 2009-10.  If the stimulus monies are accepted by the state and distributed to higher education, Winthrop will have approximately two years to adapt to the lowered appropriation amounts.  As the only source of real revenue is tuition and fees, parameters are set to remain as close to the Higher Education Price Index (HEPI) for Masters Level Universities (4%) as possible.  This resolution will give the Executive Committee the authority to meet later in the summer to review the actions of the state as related to the stimulus monies in order to set the operating budget as well as approve the tuition and fees.  The resolution passed unanimously.

The second order of business of the Finance Committee was to propose a Resolution to Establish a “Red Flags Rule” Identity Theft Prevention Program for Winthrop University.  This program will ensure Winthrop complies with federal law as it pertains to protections against identity theft of our students, faculty, and staff.  The resolution passed unanimously.

Folkens concluded his report by stating the Finance Committee met in executive session to discuss contractual and legal matters.  No actions were taken in executive session and details of that meeting will be found in the minutes of the Finance Committee meeting to be distributed to the Board in its entirety. 

Report of the University Relations Committee

Chair Janet Smalley began her report by urging all Trustees to review the University Relations briefing notes as provided.  She continued with a discussion on the report of Tom Hickman, Athletics Director. While the overall semester GPA of athletes increased slightly from 2.93 to 2.94 the overall cumulative GPA decreased from 3.00 to 2.99.

The committee was introduced to Ms. Melissa Pluchos, Director of Academic and Student Athlete Services.  Ms. Pluchos serves as the liaison between the athletics department and faculty as well as overseeing the academic support services for athletes such as study hall, academic progress reports, tutoring, freshmen weekly meetings, identifying “at-risk” students, mentoring freshmen and those identified as “at-risk”, support of upperclassmen transitioning out of mentoring and any other assistance identified as needed throughout the semester.

Continuing on to the admissions/enrollment area, Chair Smalley summarized the report of Kathryn Holten, VP of Advancement and University Relations.  While projected enrollments remain static, the admissions staff continues to work to improve recruiting efforts.  Particularly successful is a partnership with telecounseling firm RuffaloCODY to recruit and enroll students for 2009 and 2010.

Moving to student life, Chair Smalley reported great progress in the area of the Critical Incident Management Team.  The team is doing so well that Dr. Ardaiolo recently was requested to share all the university documents that the CIMT has developed with the Harvard University Crisis Leadership in Higher Education Institute.  In doing so he gave permission to Harvard’s request to use these documents in future institutes “as examples of the kinds of forward-leaning anticipatory pre-thinking that organizations can and should do”.

Chair Smalley concluded her report with the recent changes to Foundation’s spending policies and priority uses of “rainy day funds” to help with scholarships and other funding.  She said many donors are stepping forward to offer additional support.

Board Officer Elections

As the next order of business, Chair Bigham temporarily turned the meeting over to Karl Folkens for the purpose of the election of the Board officers for academic year 2009-10.  Nominating Committee Chair Janet Smalley brought forth the recommendation of her committee.  Kathy Bigham was recommended for Chair, Dalton Floyd for Vice Chair, and Frances Davenport for Secretary.  Each agreed to serve if elected.  The election was unanimous.  The new officers will assume their duties on July 1, 2009.

Report of the Chair of Faculty Conference

Dr. Cheryl Fortner-Wood began her report by thanking the faculty for permitting her to represent them for two years as their representative to the Board of Trustees.  She emphasized her appreciation that the Board asks for and seriously considers the perspective of the Faculty Representative when it is relevant for the decisions they make.

Report of the Chair of the Council of Student Leaders

Newly elected Chair, Sydney Evans reported on upcoming plans for the Council of Student Leaders.  As of a few weeks ago, all board positions linked to student committees have been filled.  A few seats on the Board will remain open to be filled with incoming freshmen in the Fall semester.  This summer she will be attending a leadership conference at the University of Colorado at Boulder and plans to report on it at the next Trustee meeting in November.

Report of the President

The President began his report by thanking the Trustees for their vote of confidence in awarding him an “Exceeds Expectations” for his evaluation and by extending his contract.

He summarized the 2008-09 academic year by characterizing it as intense, frustrating, and disruptive at times as furloughs and other budget cuts had to be made.  He reflected that our willingness to be proactive in December with furloughs and cuts resulted in a solid plan for next year. As further developments with stimulus funding and budget issues arise, the Board as well as the campus community will be kept informed. 

Old Business

None.

New Business

None.

Adjournment

Hearing no objections, Chair Bigham adjourned the meeting at 2 pm.

Minutes submitted by Kimberly Faust, Secretary to the Board for 2009-10.

APPROVED BY THE BOARD ON   NOVEMBER 5, 2009.