November 21, 2008

The Board of Regents of Washington State University met pursuant to call in Open Meeting at 9:30 a.m., on Friday, November 21, 2008, at Compton Union Building, Room 204, Pullman, Washington.  

Present:  Regent Francois X. Forgette, Chair; Regents Kenneth Alhadeff, Scott Carson, Harold Cochran,  Elizabeth Cowles, Derick En’Wezoh, Laura Jennings, and Connie Niva; President Elson S. Floyd, and Executive Assistant to the President and Board of Regents Christine Hoyt. 

1. Report from the Chair of the Board of Regents. Regent Forgette welcomed everyone to the meeting. 

2. Report from the President of the University.  President Elson S. Floyd reported that these have been very uncertain times for the University, our Nation and for the State of Washington.  He said that we have received word from the Governor’s Office that we should prepare for an initial budget reduction of approximately $6 M.  He indicated that WSU has already initiated important steps to reduce the number of administrators hired within the university and communicated to all constituents that we would only fill administrative positions essential to the University’s benefit.  He added that if we continue these cost saving measures, the University would be well along the way of realizing a $3 M reduction in the overall budget which can be returned to the State. He also indicated that because of the diligence of the staff, we will be in a situation in which The Murrow College will be exempt from any reductions associated with the initial budget reduction.  He added that these are very difficult times and it’s going to require sacrifice and commitment from all of us.  He said that as the son of working-class parents who never graduated from high school, he understands and believes very strongly in leadership by example.  He expressed to the Regents how grateful he is to have their confidence in him.  He said that next month, he and his wife Carmento will celebrate two years of serving as President and that he appreciates the compensation that the Board has provided to him and his family.  He said that in recognition of the financial circumstances of the State and Nation and the fact that leadership by example is of paramount importance, that effective January 1, 2009, he will reduce his salary voluntarily by $100,000.  He said that it is the right thing to do, that it sends the right message and that it also signifies where we are as a University.  He said we are one university, and all of us are in this together.  

Regent Forgette commented that President Floyd’s commitment in this regard is unprecedented in the history of this university and that it also comes on top of the earlier scholarship that President and Mrs. Floyd announced earlier.  He said that the Board accepted his request, that they appreciate what it says about him and his leadership, and that it confirms to them that they have made the right choice in bringing him to WSU.  He also said that they are appreciative that he always leads by example.  

3. Minutes. It was moved and seconded that the Board of Regents approve the minutes of October 17, 2008.  Carried.

4. Reports from University Groups.  

Faculty Senate Chair Bill Cofer reported that at the last Faculty Senate meeting, President Floyd discussed the hiring and traveling freeze, and they also received a report on the status of the Academic Affairs Program Prioritization process from Larry Lames.  He said that a revision was approved for the jury duty policy that will allow faculty members serving on jury duty, to keep the jury fee.  He said a revision was also approved for Academic Regulation 133, involving the criteria governing the President’s Honor Roll.  He said that the criteria have been strengthened to remove the possibility of a student being named to the President’s Honor Roll on the basis of the cumulative GPA while having a substandard semester GPA. He said that they also approved nominations to senate committees.  He reported that the senate leadership has been involved in the formation of two new presidential committees: The Faculty Salary Committee and The Campus Master Plan Committee. Lastly he reported that the General Education Visioning Committee was charged to provide a vision and strategy for General Education and that their recommendations are due April 1.

 Administrative Professional Advisory Council (APAC) Chair Francis Benjamin reported that October was National Work Life month and that the Work Life Committee, established by a joint recommendation of APAC and the Commission on the Status of Women, highlighted the month by sending out emails on topics such as elder care, and financial and environmental issues.  He also reported that they have submitted a performance management plan to the state.  If the plan is approved, it would reward outstanding performance of Administrative Professional employees to be recognized through avenues such as additional annual leave or one-time bonuses.  He reported that APAC will be hosting its next meeting at the WSU Spokane Campus.  He said that APAC is also trying to meet at every regional campus to help break down barriers caused by distance to develop networking among administrative professionals.  Lastly, he reported that in the month of December, APAC will be hosting a mentoring program.  The program is designed to educate individuals regarding mentoring and develop mentoring opportunities among administrative professionals.

 Graduate and Professional Student Association (GPSA) President Jessica Moore reported on the success of their Wine and Cheese Social and the Wiley Research Exposition.  She also reported that she has just returned from the National Association of Graduate and Professional Students Conference that was held at the University of Minnesota.  She said that the conference provided an opportunity to discuss and exchange ideas, successes and struggles with counterparts at universities nationwide.  She also reported that WSU GPSA is amongst the top tier graduate and professional student organizations nationally in programming, services and relationship with university administration.  Lastly, she reported that the development of the GPSA resource center in Holland Library is currently underway and that they hope to have it completed by spring. 

Associated Students of Washington State University (ASWSU) President Brandon Scheller provided an update on their Student Safety Campaign.  He said they have raised over $40,000 through the fundraising dinner, through various grants, donations, and S&A Reserves.  He indicated that they are looking into ways to improve the lighting on College Hill, help create a self-sustaining “Safe Walk” program, build safety kiosks on campus and provide scholarships for a Self Defense and Personal Safety course at the Student Recreation Center.  He reported that the results of their Textbook Buy-back Campaign are in and that 61 percent of faculty on campus complied with the Bookie deadline.  Their goal was to reach 80 percent, however their efforts resulted in a 16 percent increase.  Lastly, he reported that ASWSU is preparing its legislative agenda for the upcoming session in Olympia.  He said that they are considering breaking contract with the Washington Student Lobby due to the increase in membership and also feel that they can represent WSU student’s voice more accurately and efficiently being independent from other schools.   

WSU Foundation Board of Governors Chair Bob Felton reported that as of October 31, 2008, the WSU Foundation has received more than $43.3 million in fundraising activity during FY2009.  This compares to $29.5 million at the same point last fiscal year.  He also reported that the Foundation’s endowment decreased from $324.2 million to $287.5 million during FY2009.  He said that although WSU’s endowment has declined by approximately 12.1 percent during the last twelve months due to a weakening market, the Foundation’s endowment is faring better than many other university endowments due to a well-diversified portfolio.  He also reported that large gifts are still coming in and that the $17.5 million commitment from Gene and Linda Voiland is the largest of any individual donor in the university’s history.  Lastly, he reported that the Spring Meeting of the Board of Trustees will be held at Suncadia Resort in Roslyn, WA, May 28-29, 2009.

Alumni Association (WSUAA) President Gina Meyers reported that the Alumni Association enhances businesses owned by Cougars through the Wine By Cougars wine club which now has members in 26 states, and through the Cougar Business Network which has registered over 320 Cougar-owned or managed businesses. She also reported that Cougar alumnus and former Los Angeles SWAT officer Randal Simmons was posthumously recognized by the WSUAA and WSU Athletics during a half-time presentation.  The Simmons family was presented with the WSUAA’s Cougar Courage Award for Randy’s dedication to public service and bravery.  She also reported on newly adopted members into the Alumni Association and Life Memberships which have increased 38% since 2004/05.  Lastly, she recognized individuals who received WSUAA’s highest honor, the Alumni Achievement Award. 

5. Executive Committee.  Regent Forgette reported that the committee discussed the 2009 Board Retreat dates and have decided to keep the dates that were already approved of July 22-23, 2009.  He also said that with the current budget situation, they will meet at location that will be less expensive for individuals to travel.

6. Finance and Audit Committee.  Regent Niva reported for Regent Worthy who was unable to attend.  She reported that they received reports from the State Auditor’s Office and also from the Internal Audit Office.  She said that they were given a report that covered the status of the audits currently taking place and those that will take place in the near future.  She also remarked how valuable the Auditor’s Office is to the University in days of transparency, and that it is good for the Regents to know how well the institution is complying with current law and utilizing all possible resources.  Lastly, Regent Niva reviewed each action item before seeking Board approval.  

The Board took action on the following:

Amendments to the Washington State University Retirement Plan. It was moved and seconded that the Board of Regents approve and adopt the Washington State University 403(b) Retirement Plan and the Washington State University 401(a) Supplemental Retirement Plan in Exhibit A. Carried.

Adoption of the Washington State University Voluntary Investment Plan. It was moved and seconded that the Board of Regents approve and adopt the Washington State University Voluntary Investment Program in Exhibit B.  Carried.

WAC Revisions: Facilities Use Rules. It was moved and seconded that the Board of Regents amend the WAC Revisions: Facilities Use Rules in Exhibit C.  Carried.

WSU Vancouver, Applied Technology Classroom Building and Washington Technology Center Semiconductor Component Testing Facility, Schematic Design.  It was moved and seconded that the Board of Regents approve the Schematic Design documents and grant authorization to proceed with the WSU Vancouver, Applied Technology Classroom Building and Washington Technology Center Semiconductor Component Testing Facility Schematic Design.  Carried.

WSU Vancouver, Education and Human Development Building Addition, Schematic Design.  It was moved and seconded that the Board of Regents approve schematic design documents, grant authorization to proceed, and delegate authority to the President or his designee to advertise for bids and award a construction contract, provided costs are within funds available.  Carried.

7. External Affairs and Athletics Committee.   Regent Alhadeff reported for Regent Stone who was unable to attend.  He reported that the committee received an update from Vice President Brenda Wilson-Hale regarding the Campaign.  He said that we are doing well with the acquisition of gifts and the relationships with donors as we continue the quiet phase of the campaign.  He added that most of the nation’s top advisors state that in difficult times like this, campaigns still do go forward and are successful,  but that our professional staff is very sensitive to the times we are currently in, and if there any adjustments necessary to campaign timing, they will be thoroughly vetted and decided upon. He also reported on the integrity and highly regarded group of individuals of the Investment Committee. Lastly, he reported on the presentation given by Vice President John Gardner on WSU’s local, national and global outreach in engagement in all 39 counties in the state of Washington.  

8. Academic and Student Affairs Committee.  Regent Cochran reported on the action item of the WAC addition: Cost Savings on Course Materials.  He also reported that the committee received an update on the accreditation self-study and how A2P2 dovetails into the self-study by taking a look at all of universities course offerings.  Lastly, he reported that they received an update from Vice President Mike Tate on team mentoring programs, and campus safety.

The Board took action on the following:

WAC Addition: Cost Savings on Course Materials.  It was moved and seconded that the Board of Regents adopt WAC 504-43: Course Materials.  Carried.

  • Adjournment.  The Board of Regents meeting adjourned at 11:15 a.m.

Approved by the Board of Regents at its meeting held January 30, 2009, Firstenburg Student Commons 101-103, Vancouver, Washington.