April 14, 2009 Minutes

Tuesday, April 14, 2009
4:00 P.M. – 5:30 P.M.
Leung Gallery

Members: Provost Kertzer, Karen Davis, Margaret Klawunn, Marisa Quinn, Vince Tompkins, Bill Twaddell, David Cutts, Marida Hollos, Evelyn Hu-Dehart, Lynne Joyrich, David Sheinberg, Brian Becker, Michael Glassman, Subha Subramanian, Clay Wertheimer, Joseph Bush, Heather Lee, Gillian Bell, Yolanda Castillo-Appollonio, Nancy Fjeldheim, Paul Magliocco, Kathleen Rossi, Marlene Cutitar, Charlie Kroll, Ken McDaniel, and Damon Rarick were in attendance. President Simmons, Anthony Cokes, Suzanne de la Monte, Stephen Foley, Chi-Ming Hai, Timothy Herbert, Alison Cohen, Lauren Buckel, Esther Dorzin, Kartik Venkatesh, and Merle Krueger were unable to attend.

Provost Kertzer presided over the meeting in President Simmons’ absence.

The minutes of the March 17, 2009 meeting were approved.

Brenda Allen gave an overview of Brown’s diversity efforts during her six-year tenure as Associate Provost and Director of Institutional Diversity. (Ms. Allen will be leaving Brown at the end of the year to take a position at Winston-Salem State University.) She focused on recruitment, retention, and management. Brown has increased its overall faculty by 17%, with women representing 36% of the new hires and minorities representing 24%. There has been an increase in the number of Latino undergraduate students while the number of African Americans has been flat. She cited an apprentice program in Facilities aimed at increasing the number of women in the skilled crafts. Ms. Allen outlined the existing retention programs for faculty: mentoring, family friendly programs, and advancement opportunities; students: mentoring committee and deans; and staff: career ladders. She discussed the policies and support in place: discrimination and harassment policy, gender neutral housing policies, disability services, diversity advisory board, diversity advisory council, committee on faculty diversity and equality, and diversity training program. Ms. Allen concluded by reviewing the major strengths and continued challenges of Brown’s diversity effort. Vision, leadership, and accountability were among the strengths. Value vs. action and over-dependence on the organic and on student initiatives were among the challenges.

Chancellor Tom Tisch reviewed the recent governance review undertaken by the Corporation. He reported that in May the Corporation will consider a proposal to create a young alumni trustee position and a proposal to change the number of years the Corporation business meetings are closed from 50 to 25 years.

Dani Martinez ’10, Jesse Strecker ’10, and Lenora Knowles ’11 discussed their concerns about claims of mistreatment of workers by HEI Hotels and Resorts, and the Student Labor Union’s (SLA) appeal for Brown to take a stand in support of the workers and to make no further investments in the company until it respects its workers’ demands. Members of SLA met with the Advisory Committee on Corporate Responsibility in Investment Policies (ACCRIP) and were informed that the Committee does not recommend that the University take a stand based on the information provided by SLA. ACCRIP has invited SLA to return to the Committee if it has additional information that may make them reconsider.

Beppie Huidekoper, Executive Vice President for Finance and Administration, reviewed the budget planning process for FY’11. Given the economic downturn, Brown needs to reduce the education and general budget by $30 million. The Organizational Review Committee has been formed and is charged with recommending reorganization options that could result in savings of $10 to $20 million. The Committee will be expanded to include more faculty, student, and staff representation. Additional savings of $5-10 million are being sought through reductions in operating expenses. Recommendation for FY’11 will be brought to the University Resource Committee in December.

The next meeting of the Brown University Community Council will be held on September 23, 2009 from 4:00 – 5:30 pm at Brown Hillel, 80 Brown Street.

Respectfully submitted,

Catherine Pincince
Secretary of the Brown University Community Council