June 22, 2020 Meeting of Executive Committee

Time and Location of Meeting

June 22, 20201:30 pm - 3:00 pm Zoom Meeting

Agenda Details




June 22, 2020 


428 Library 


  1. Approve minutes – June 8 
  2.  Question Time 
  3. AUL for User Services transition 
  4. HR issues 


Minutes Details




June 22, 2020 


428 Library 


Attendees: John Wilkin (Chair); David Ward (Vice-Chair); Paula Carns; William Maher; William Mischo; Mara Thacker; Jennifer Teper (Secretary, Recording); and Lynne Thomas.  


*Original agenda order was reorganized to accommodate Lynne Thomas needing to leave the meeting early.  


  1. AUL for User Services Transition 


The proposed User Services Transitional Strategy document was discussed. Some feedback has already been collected and has been useful in further refining the plan, but all questions are not answered. Overall, EC felt the plan, roles, and staff proposed for those roles are appropriate and well positioned for leadership.  The model takes advantage of our strong middle management and distributes a very overloaded service portfolio. Some concerns discussed were 

  • How will the hierarchy of three new directors collaborate with the AULs and other leadership? (They will be part of the Administrative Team, similar to Heather or Tim or other Cabinet members who are not AULs).  
  • Why not just make them AULs? Why directors? (None of the proposed directors felt ready for an AUL level position.  On a more practical matter, to make all three AULs would be difficult from a compensation standpoint). 
  • We already have many “tiers” of staffing in the library, will adding these director positions cause any challenges at the administrative level?  (Not anticipated) 
  • Asked for clarity on reporting lines – will the new directors report to John?  (Yes) 

Dean Wilkin stressed that this is a transitional model which moves potential leaders into positions that may cultivate stronger, future Library leadership and discussion and plans will continue to evolve. 

  • There was concern about the gender balance in leadership of losing two female AULs and gaining two female directors and one male director. (This continues to be a concern for Dean Wilkin as well, who would like to see more gender equity in leadership positions) 
  • There was also concern that this interim plan may be seen as “demoting” leadership in user services to a less senior position. (Again, it was stressed that this is an interim strategy and not a long-term plan, and that by putting too much into one portfolio it undermines the Library’s ability to really provide good leadership) 
  • How will this new model NOT lead to more fracturing/overburdening, since all the proposed Directors are continuing to still hold their current positions?  (Dean Wilkin really thinks this plan builds on existing strengths but acknowledges that it will be more burden of responsibility on them.  He stressed that the Library must do what it can to fill vacancies to support these new positions). 
  • Where do our developing efforts in outreach and engagement fit into this plan? We don’t want to see our progress lose momentum (John acknowledged that this is not clear and present and will need to be looked at).  
  • With Heidi Imker stepping down from her AUL role as well, what happens to leadership for grants and research? (Don’t have an answer for that right now, though at least we have just made a successful hire for our Grants and Contracts Coordinator, which will be a big help in that area).  
  • What about unit heads now not reporting to an AUL? Generally, this was not seen as a significant issue, however, mentoring of new, untenured unit heads will be a gap that will need to be addressed. There is perhaps a stronger role for the Divisions to support this mentoring need.  
  • Is there any concern about the appearance of adding three new “director” positions from a campus perspective? (Dean Wilkin thinks not, the Board of Trustees is different and generally not as concerned about that sort of count anymore).  


Dean Wilkin will be making announcement very shortly about both the plan for the new Directors, as well as Heidi Imker stepping down as AUL (leaves her role on July 15th).  


  1. Approve minutes – June 8 


Minutes of the June 8, 2020 meeting of the Executive Committee were accepted as written with a movement from David Ward and a second by Lynne Thomas 


  1. Question Time 


There were no substantive issues to discuss in Question Time.  The University continues to be cautiously optimistic regarding the situation with the budget, but we are still waiting for more information.   


A question was raised about the status of the Building Project. Unfortunately, although the LCWG report was submitted to the Provost’s Office, he was unable to meet with them to discuss the recommendations, which has put that part of the project on hold until the fall, as it has not been formally accepted by the Provost’s Office. In the meantime, we will focus on Phase I of the plan, which is moving forward with a contract for A&E for the Special Collections building, which is with Tim Newman.   


  1. HR issues 


Bill Mischo is planning to officially retire at the end of June and after 60 days will be appointed as a retiree rehire as the Unit Head of GELIC. This newly instated appointment will need to be year to year as required by campus. Mary Schlembach will serve as acting unit head from July through September and a stipend for her leadership will be investigated (Bill Mischo does not currently have a stipend which can be transferred). Bill’s position on a search committee was also discussed and a possible replacement was suggested.   


Meeting Adjourned 2:31 pm.