|UND employee elected president of first-ever University System Staff Senate|
The North Dakota University System initiated a first-ever Staff Senate in the state and elected officers at a leadership conference held late last week at the University of North Dakota.
The new Staff Senate was started with the approval of NDUS Chancellor William Goetz, and a subcommittee currently is working to establish bylaws for the group by Jan. 1. Each institution would be allowed one vote on all issues brought before the NDUS Staff Senate.
Janice Hoffarth, who currently serves as president of the UND Staff Senate, was elected president of the NDUS Staff Senate. Janine Trowbridge, North Dakota State University in Fargo, will serve as vice president; Mary Morell, Bismarck State College, will be secretary; and Cindy Rerick, Lake Region State College, was chosen to be communications officer.
The NDUS has never had a body made up exclusively of nonfaculty employees from its 11 colleges and universities. There are about 7,500 full and part-time employees in the university system.
"This is all brand new," said Hoffarth.
The NDUS Staff Senate hopes to set up a network for information to flow from the state Legislature and Board of Higher Education to NDUS staff members. It also will work with the chancellor to establish a nonvoting representative on the Board of Higher Education. Currently, the board is made up of eight voting members, including one student representative, Haylee Cripe of UND. The board also has one nonvoting board member, Jon Jackson, who represents system faculty. Jackson is a professor of anatomy and cell biology at UND.
The NDUS Staff Senate will meet yearly for "face-to-face" meetings, although it will convene via Interactive Video Network (IVN), conference calls or through e-mail as needed throughout the year. Yearly meetings will take place on the third Wednesday of June each year. Next year's meeting will be held at Bismarck State College.
The development of the new staff Senate and the election of its officers took place during the NDUS Leadership Conference held at UND.
Those in attendance were:
Mary Morell and Rita Nodlan: Bismarck State College
Kelly Steffes and Christine Chernich: Dickinson State
Bobbi Lunday, Nicole Lundquist and Cindy Rerick: Lake Region State
Gail Schumann and Sharyl Hanson: Mayville State
Shirley Fox-Trydahl, Joel Kotschevar and Ann McGray: North Dakota State College of Science
Diane Nelson, Janice Hoffarth, Loren Liepold and Joneen Iverson: UND
Steve Bergeson, Barb Gesslin, Vance Olson and Janine Trowbridge: NDSU
Lynn Haverlock and Melissa Meyer: Williston State