Council Minutes

Minutes for the Meeting on September 16, 2014
OIT Conference Room

Representatives present:
Donna Childers, Mary Sinnott, Tanya Stringer, Paula Norrell, Sue Olson, Ginger Vedder, Tammy Williams, Jeffrey Briskey, Kelly Sharpe, Sharron Barney, Hollie Lee, Chris Sharpe, Dorothy Dunn, Yvette Rivera, Charleen Freeman-Thomas, Lauren Einhorn, Joe Gulledge, Arthur Taylor, Michael Freeman, Jennifer Holt, Chuck Ciocco
Representatives absent:
lthea Tate (Graduate School), Leigh Ballard, Nancy Griggs, Kathy Dowdell (Dr. Appointment), Cindy Gulledge (Work Related), Paul Barringer, Pat Stapler, Lyn Long, James Lyons (Work Related), Joseph Ellis, Jeanetta Felton
Call to Order:
Michael Freeman

resentations by Michael Kensler on Sustainability and JohnVarner on history of Staff Council  


Chair Michael Freeman welcomes everyone and introduces MichaelKensler from the Office of Sustainability on campus and John Varner as StaffCouncil Historian as speakers in our meeting today.


Michael Kensler

Mr. Kensler presents a slide show discussing the purpose andgoals of his office.

Auburn has made a lot of commitments to sustainability.Sustainability is more than recycling it is about meeting human needs now andin the future, in a way that’s fair just and equitable, while protecting andmaintaining healthy ecosystems in perpetuity.

Mr. Kensler discussed using the sustainability compass withNature, Wellbeing, Economy and Society representing the 4 points on thecompass.

The ideology of sustainability works so that communities areencouraged to live with the laws of nature, have a fair and prosperous economy,have a sense of fairness in social engagement, and that each individual isnurtured.

What does it mean to be successful in sustainability:  planning for the long term preferred outcomesusing processes that work toward the vision of meeting long term sustainabilitygoals.


At this point Chair Freeman mentions the Adopt-A-Spotprogram that the University will soon be adopting where groups of faculty,staff and students can adopt an area of campus and make sure there area is neatand litter-free.  This ties in well tothe sustainability goals for Auburn University.


John Varner presents a brief history of Staff Council

Mr. Varner began as a student at Auburn in 1977 and onceemployed here began serving on the Staff Council in the late 1990’s. He wasChair of the Staff Council in 2003.

Mr. Varner  gave abrief overview of some major points of the 41 years of Council  history.

In 1993, then Auburn University President Muse brokeemployees into 3 groups which were faculty, administrative and professionals,and staff.

The Auburn University Staff Council began 1973, for the mostpart due to an administration letter asking for contact people within thedepartments in case of advisory needs for employee issues.

September 20, 1976 was the first meeting of theCouncil.  The group elected officers atthis point.

In the early years the Council was made up of all women,mostly administrative assistants usually to school Deans.

In 1984, it was announced that employees could serve oncommittees which opened up a new door for the staff voice to be heard withinthe administration.

In 1986, the mission of the Council was declared it as acommunication vehicle between the staff and the administration.

In 1989,  therecommendations of the staff began to affect policy in areas such as maternity leave, recruiting techniques, salarydetermination, vacation leave accrual, job classifications etc.

Over the years of its existence the Staff Council has had ahand in many accomplishments for the Staff of Auburn University. The councilhas helped work on the University budget, insurance and benefits, presidentscommittees, improved sick leave, participation in annuity program, gaining staffrepresentation on additional committees, assisting in development andimplementation of employee assistance program, establishment of staff recognitioncommittee, tuition waiver and many more.

In 2003, Mr. Varner’s predecessor celebrated 30thanniversary of the Staff Council.

Other Staff Council Updates

Chair Freeman updated the group on committees and theirprogresses.

Many committees have not yet resumed meetings for fall.

The Insurance and Benefits Committee hasn’t met yet but anynew developments in that area will be brought to the Council as they arrive.

The Traffic Appeals Board is currently meeting.

The Committee for Intercollegiate Athletics subcommittee onTickets and Seating has been meeting to address some upcoming changes in theticketing and pricing for faculty and staff. These changes have yet to be finalized but Chair Freeman and ChairHamberlin of the Administrative and Professional Assembly are working to getthe best possible outcome for all of campus.

There was a brief discussion of the mixed feelings towardthe new AU News format as opposed to AU Daily.

The new Staff Council Website is almost ready to be launched.  Chair Freeman previously sent out links tomembers so they could look at a test site to get an idea of what the newwebsite will be like.  The new siteshould be available very soon.

Dismissed 10:58


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