IFAS Faculty Council Meeting
August 29, 2006
Members present: Elizabeth Bolton, John Davis, Lochrane Gary, Gail Kauwell, Ed Jennings,
Heather McAuslane, Jane Polston, Fritz Roka (chair), Mike Sweat
Members absent: Jude Grosser, Bob Hochmuth
Guests present: Dean Kirby Barrick, Mike Kane, Samira Daroub, Curt Hannah, David Holmes,
Steve Johnson, Bill Lindbergh, Tom Obreza, Jim Selph, Saundra Tenbroeck, Danaya Wright
Chair Fritz Roka called the meeting to order at 1:30 p.m. in room 1054 of the Microbiology
building. He called for a moment of silence to remember our friend and co-councilor, Martin
Adjei, who died tragically in an auto accident on August 15th
Senior Vice President Cheek arrived at 1:40 p.m.
Update and Comments from Senior Vice President Cheek.
Sr. VP Cheek welcomed the new IFAS Faculty Council (FC) members who were in
attendance (Kane, Daroub, Johnson, Holmes and Obreza) and thanked them for their
willingness to serve. He thanked the IFAS members of the UF Faculty Senate and the
members of the FC for their work on developing shared governance in IFAS. He also
thanked the FC for their efforts to have IFAS well-represented in the UF Strategic Work Plan.
Sr. VP Cheek said that there had been no calls for new faculty proposals in the last few
years because emergencies, such as hurricanes and unexpectedly high utility bills, had taken
the money that would have been used to hire new faculty. The Legislature provided some
money this year to fund some of the utility increases but IFAS still needs to absorb some
costs. Sr. VP Cheek recently met with the Chairs and Center Directors and explained how he
plans to allocate faculty positions. Six positions will be released immediately; three to replace
faculty who recently left the University for other jobs; one to replace a faculty member who
met an untimely death; one as a condition of receiving a $2 million endowment for tomato
breeding; and one to replace a faculty member who was counseled out. He will entertain
proposals from Chairs and Center Directors for new faculty hires starting in mid-October.
Decisions on faculty hires will include such criteria as need, space and technical support
available, and the ability of the incumbent or department to contribute a proportion of the new
faculty member's salary.
Sr. VP Cheek plans to travel to all Centers and Departments within the next 6 months to
meet with faculty to discuss the State of IFAS .
Sr. VP Cheek distributed the recent Gainesville Sun article that brought to light a time card
scheme instigated by an IFAS faculty member. He explained how the University acted
quickly on a complaint made by a staff member and within two and half weeks, a full report by
the Personnel Department was prepared. Sr. VP Cheek mentioned how one instance of lack
of judgment has tarnished UF, IFAS and the faculty member. All faculty members need to
use good judgment and counsel their colleagues to do the same.
In response to a question about needing more money to maintain our programs, Sr. VP
Cheek agreed that additional resources are needed to maintain the quality of our university.
Tuition increases are one source of revenue even though they are unpopular with students.
President Machen has made faculty salary increases a priority with any additional money.
In response to a question asking for clarification on the source of money to pay a
proportion of new faculty's salaries, Sr. VP Cheek said that all new faculty will be asked
whether they can foresee being able to pay a portion of their salary with external funds. After
3 years or so, they would then assume responsibility for some agreed-upon proportion of
In response to a question about why extension districts were redistricted without faculty
input, Sr. VP Cheek suggested that Dean Arrington be invited to a future FC meeting to
explain the process because he was not sure why faculty input was not sought. The FC
member relayed that several extension faculty members up for tenure or promotion now find
themselves in new districts under new District Directors, and are concerned that the lack of a
long-term acquaintance between faculty member and District Director will hurt them during
promotion. Sr. VP Cheek said that a packet must stand on its own and all faculty members
will be judged based on the contents of the packet, not on personal knowledge of the
Sr. VP Cheek left at 2:10 after inviting all current and new FC members to join him for
dinner at the Sovereign restaurant.
IFAS Shared Governance and Development of By-Laws. Danaya Wright, UF Senate Chair,
gave the FC an overview of the history of shared governance at the University of Florida The
outcome of the work of the Task Force on the Implementation of Shared Governance Structure
was adopted by the Senate on April 20th, 2006
(http://www.senate.ufl.edu/archives/committees/qovernanceTaskForce/report13.pdf). The UF
Senate recommended that all units evaluate their current governance structure and develop plans
to implement shared governance if that is not the case currently.
Elizabeth Bolton, chair of the Phase I committee to draft the IFAS constitution, presented the
results of the work of her committee (Curt Hannah, John Davis, Jim Selph, Mike Sweat and Bill
Lindbergh). The draft constitution is based on the constitution of the University of Florida It
proposes the creation of a Faculty Assembly, a body of 50 faculty members, who will be elected
proportionately by each department, district and center. It specifies the makeup and functions of
a Steering Committee and five Policy Councils. After several more revisions, Sr. VP Cheek and
the Ad Hoc Constitution Committee (the joint membership of the IFAS FC and the IFAS Senators)
will call a special meeting to discuss the draft with all IFAS faculty. A reworked draft will be sent
to all faculty members within 4 weeks of this special meeting and will be adopted if ratified by
more than 50% of all eligible faculty.
After much discussion, it was decided that the Phase II committee to draft the constitution should
consist of the original Phase I committee, all members of the IFAS FC, and all IFAS Senators.
Curt Hannah will convene the meeting of the committee and a chair will be elected. The group
will discuss the current draft in the morning and then rewrite the draft in the afternoon.
It is planned that the 40 members of this committee will become the ambassadors of IFAS shared
governance. They will visit all departments, centers and districts to initiate conversations about
the draft IFAS constitution and provide information on how units might structure their own shared
Future Meetings of the Faculty Council. Meetings of the 2006-2007 Faculty Council will be
held in the conference room in the Animal Sciences (if equipped with PolyComm capabilities).
Tentative dates are September 19th, October 18th, November 16th, December 20th, January 17th
and February 21st.
The July meeting minutes were approved as amended. The meeting was adjourned at 4:30 p.m.
Heather McAuslane (Secretary)