Minutes of the
SPECIAL MEETING OF THE FACULTY SENATE
PRESENT: Bill Bedford, Judy
ABSENT: Marilee Nebelsick-Tagg, Anne Voth, Tamara Weintraub
GUESTS: Elaine Collins, Dan Finkenthal
CALL TO ORDER: The meeting was called to order by the president, Steve Spear, at , in Room SU-30.
Approval of Minutes:
Motion 1 MSC Drinan,
Snyder: To postpone the approval of the minutes of
Barb Neault-Kelber requested that the following memorandums be inserted into the minutes:
To: Members of the
From: Barb Neault Kelber
Re: The minutes of
In support of my request that we postpone the approval of the minutes, I respectfully ask that the Senate consider this clarification relating to the arguments of December 08.
Attached please find
copies of two letters. I wrote one of them on
I bring these documents to the Senate because they provide specific context for references made by Anne Voth on December 08 as part of her argument against a formal recusal policy. When Anne introduced this matter into the record, referring to attempts by someone in a faculty leadership position to intimidate her by asking her to recuse herself in matters outside the Senate, I felt that the Senate should not allow for such a reference to be made for the sake of persuasion without specific clarification.
I intended to ask
Anne directly on December 08 to clarify the reference, as I believed Senators
should be afforded the opportunity to understand the implications of her
rhetoric rather than be persuaded by unclear references and abstract arguments.
I would have asked her specifically, about the third point in her letter and
about how she defines the term “intimidation.” I was not allowed to make that
point of clarification because the
As these documents show, I did not originally intend to share this communication beyond a simple dialogue, and if I had been allowed to speak last week, I would have spoken of them then and moved on. I am sharing them now because Anne Voth made them part of her argument, and because we should no longer accept the lack of clarity that is only perpetuated by indirect reference and abstract accusation. Our minutes are littered with these, coming from inside the Senate as well as from outside, and they result in a kind of perverse accommodation of half-truths with no follow-up questions.
Perhaps naively, I went directly to Anne with my request that she consider recusal, and I hoped that she would see not only the opportunity to take a logically sound and ethical step, but also the opportunity to protect our faculty peer review process (and protect herself, as well) all in one gesture of recusal. In this case, I was speaking as a faculty member who recognizes that the present climate of suspicion, complaint and investigation, whether real or perceived, could endanger our peer review process.
I will be glad to answer any questions relating to this (including any questions about the accusations Anne Voth makes against me in her letter) after the Senate has had the opportunity to consider it. Perhaps at our January 26 meeting, we can approve the minutes of December 08 with this contextual matter included for clarification.
From: Barbara Kelber
Subject: recusal policy
Unfortunately, the Senate was unable to take up the recusal policy for action yesterday because we ran out of time, as you know. Next week we probably won’t have time to consider it because we’ll have the visitors from the State Senate as our guests. Because of these delays, I’m approaching you directly, before I take this matter to the Senate.
Please look at the recusal policy, which I believe the Senate will probably adopt, and officially step aside from the position of TERB coordinator, certainly and at least in the cases of faculty members against whom you have brought a grievance or complaint. Also, I hope you will recognize the need to do so in the case of any faculty member who requests your recusal.
Although I have only fragmentary knowledge of some of these matters relating to complaints and investigations and the like, what I hear concerns me and leads me to this request. I hope you will do the right thing, taking steps without further prompting, to be fair. You would be doing so for the sake of all the faculty, as well as for the future health and welfare of our tenure and review process. The recusal policy will apply not only to you, of course, but to all in similar positions in the present as well as in the future.
Thank you for considering this request.
Barb Neault Kelber
Thanks so much for your email of November 25th. It’s nice to know that there are other people out there who wish to think of me, dictate my ethics, disregard established college procedures and have no clue whatsoever as to how things actually work. I am always amused by people who base their opinions on the way they wish things were. Any disconnect from reality is not healthy.
Now let’s get down to the specifics of your email, statement by statement.
First, you have
threatened that if I don’t officially step aside from the position of TERB
coordinator or recuse myself at anyone’s request, you will take this matter to
the Senate. A faculty officer should not engage in intimidation tactics. This
matter is not within the purview of the
Second, if the senate adopts a recusal policy, it will apply only within the Senate and to voting on senate motions, etc. It would not apply outside of the Senate. Thus TERB actions and those of its members would not be subject to any Senate recusal policy. You have abused acceptable recusal practices. The senate doesn’t even have a recusal policy beyond that already stated in Robert’s Rules of Order and you, as a faculty leader, abused that policy.
Third, I will not,
under any circumstances step down from my position of TERB coordinator until my
current term expires in May. I have done nothing wrong or even remotely suspect
in my tenure as TERB Coordinator. Further, if you make any statement to that
effect in public I will sue you to the very limits of your resources with the
full backing of my union, the college and the state of
Fourth, I have always
stepped aside whenever there is any hint of conflict in my votes on any
committee. I shall continue to do so. That is what professionals do. You cannot
name one instance where I have come in conflict with any policy of procedure
Fifth, you have a near total lack of knowledge about how the tenure and evaluations process works. Before you demanded my recusal at the behest of others, you should have taken the time to read the Faculty Manual. As TERB Coordinator, I do not evaluate anyone. I do not sit on any evaluation committees, I do not participate in any evaluations at all. If any matter that comes before TERB and needs a vote, as chair, I do not vote. So what the hell am I supposed to recuse myself from?
Sixth, are you totally disconnected from reality? You say I should recuse myself (From what you do not say and above I stated there is nothing from which to recuse myself.) if anyone asks me? Should the PD Coordinator recuse herself from anything if anyone asks? The Sabbatical Leave co-chair? Should a department chair recuse herself from decision-making if any department member asks? So any person with any administrative duties should recuse themselves from anything when anyone asks? Get real.
Seventh, you say you only have fragmentary knowledge of matters regarding complaints. If you have any knowledge whatsoever, someone has violated confidence and you are participating in that violation. Thus, you should recuse yourself from further discussions on these matters. I know that if I had fragmentary knowledge on an issue I would keep my mouth shut knowing full well that I don’t know enough to make an intelligent comment. I am shocked by your lack of critical thinking. Did you ever bother to come and speak with me on any issue? I tried a number of times to set up a time to meet with you, but you were too busy to bother with me.
Eighth, you wish me to be “fair”. How fair (and ethical I might add) was it for you to bring knowingly stolen property to the senate to use in an action against a fellow senator? How fair was it of you to call for my resignation knowing I had done nothing wrong? How fair (and again ethical) was it for you to betray the Senate’s wishes to keep the Chris Barkley issue in executive session? To quote Sara Thompson “You know that we were planning on talking again about it next Monday, possibly with new information, in executive session.” “You removed the option of this not becoming a circus.” “The only reason for rushing to judgment is so that some who instigated this can be appeased. That is not reason enough.” Faculty officers are supposed to act as neutrally as possible. Your attempts at behaving in a neutral matter are not apparent to anyone. Your hypocrisy is beyond belief.
Ninth, if I recused myself from the Tenure Review process, the only people whose interests that would serve would be known liars and thieves for whom you seem to enjoy being the spokesman.
Tenth, to reiterate what I stated above (only because you incorrectly state it again in your email) the recusal policy will NOT apply to me or anyone else except having to do with actions in the Senate.
Eleventh, your email
of symptomatic of exactly why we need help from Kate Clark (ASCCC) and Marty
Hittelman (CFT) because of people like you who will do anything to drive a
wedge between honest, hard working faculty interested in the betterment of
education and not in the fostering of belligerent, anti-social, despicable and
often illegal behavior.
Twelfth, I am shocked by your anti-democratic mindset. Freedom of speech is fine with you as long as the other person agrees with you. But if someone differs in an opinion, or chooses to follow an established procedure with which you disagree, you seem perfectly willing to stop at nothing to try and discredit that person. You as a faculty leader are supposed to represent all faculty, not just a small group with a certain agenda.
Finally, given your
unethical behavior on at least three occasions, I hope that you will do the
right, fair, ethical thing and resign as Vice-President of the Faculty and not
assume the position of President of the Faculty. You would be doing so for the
sake of all faculty, as well as for the future health and welfare of the
Process: Steve Spear
indicated that the four motions unanimously approved by the Senate at its
board requested that committee members for the search committee be in place by
January 13, but after some discussion that date was moved until
Copies of the list of faculty volunteers were provided for information.
Motion 2 MS Dowd,
Lengthy discussion followed on the following issues:
greatest number of faculty ought to participate by voting for the greatest
number of people. It was proposed that a ballot be sent out after the break
rather than now and have a shorter turn-around time. There was concern
expressed with having the polls out for such a long period of time by sending
them out now and having a deadline of
the search process doesn’t begin until
· Judy Cater indicated that because of scheduling conflicts, no faculty members from the Library submitted their names. Senate members agreed that another call for volunteers should go out for an at-large full-time faculty member to fill that spot on the committee. This would also give faculty members interested in serving a second opportunity to submit their names who may not have had time to do so the first time the announcement went out.
· The issue was raised that Dr. Amador agreed to confer with the Faculty about the development of the revised timeline and did not do so.
Motion 2 amended MS Dowd, Levy: The
· Senate members discussed the potential complications of having the poll as well as a call for volunteers for the at-large position out at the same time.
final MSC Dowd,
Motion 3 MSC Dowd, Levy:
Motion 4 MSCU Dowd,
Senate members agreed that because it is not an official ballot, a single envelope can be used to distribute the poll. Faculty members will be asked to cross out their name on the address label and return their ballot in the same envelope.
Motion 5 MSC Thompson, Cater: To extend the meeting.
Senate members also
discussed the benefits of inviting the other constituent groups to the February
faculty meeting to discuss all of the issues addressed today including the possibility
of holding an all-college meeting to discuss the leadership needs for
Senators commended Faculty President Maria Miller and Senate President Steve Spear for the statements they made at the December 9 board meeting regarding the faculty concerns and recommendations regarding representation on the presidential search committee.
There was also a question on the timeline distributed by Dr. Amador. It states that on August 30 the board will interview semi-finalists and select the finalists. It was understood that the first level committee would pick the three finalists that were going to go forward to the next level, not the board. Steve Spear stated that he would get clarification on this.
Motion 6 MSC Cater, Gowen:
Bookstore Advisory Committee
Maura Gage – Life Sciences
Carolyn Funes – Library
Matriculation and Transfer Advisory Committee
Leanne Maunu – English
Student Learning Outcomes Task Force
Marty Furch – ESL
Lori Graham – Family and Consumer Sciences
Renee Roth – Counseling
Technology Master Plan Task Force – Co-chair
Mike Arguello – Academic Technology Coordinator/EHPS
Ballots were distributed for a faculty appointment to the Academic Technology Task Force. Senate members agreed that because so many members had left the meeting, there doesn’t appear to be a need to rush appointment and the fact that this is a special meeting of the Senate that the vote should be postponed until the next regular meeting.
Motion 7 MSC Dowd, Gordon: To postpone the distribution of a ballot and approval of a faculty member to the Academic Technology Task Force.
Bonnie Dowd asked that based on discussions at prior Senate meetings, the Committee on Committees attempt to obtain statements from those faculty members interested in serving on this task force so the Senators have some information to select an individual to serve.
Other: Dan Finkenthal distributed a memo to Senate members regarding procedures relating to membership on the Tenure and Evaluations Review Board.
ADJOURNMENT: The meeting was adjourned at
Bonnie Ann Dowd, Secretary