Alumni Executive Council Business Meeting Minutes
June 7, 2015
I. President Forbes called the meeting to order at 8:10 am.
II. Roll Call
Secretary North called the roll:
Members present: Armstrong, Casler, Danielson, Faulkner, Forbes, Hallock, Hansen, Kuno, MacBrayne, McKee, McLaughlin, North, Nuffer, Olivo, Posener, Scheider, Slater, Sprague, Taylor, Terrillion, Weaver (Sue), Weaver (Danni), Williams (Jan)
Student delegates present: Goulet, Hyde, Vazquez, Williams (Maya)
Members absent: Bantz, Cowan, Dana, Halstead, Lee, Montgomery, Rood, Sullivan
Mr. Forbes declared a quorum was present for the conduct of business.
III. Approval and acceptance of minutes from the Virtual Business Meeting on 28Mar2015.
The minutes were approved unanimously on a motion by Mr. Taylor and a second by Ms. Danni Weaver
IV. President’s Report
Mr. Forbes offered the following comments: As always when this group assembles, it has been a magical weekend, enhanced by the presence of the Honeywells & Deena McCullough. If Council members have ideas or suggestions to make us better in 2016, please share them. The feedback survey will be available next week, please complete. Also, please complete Lisa’s survey which will be used for the centennial article.
Mr. Forbes asked everyone to review the pledge forms for the AEC Internship Endowment which are in our packets and consider a gift at whatever level. He reminded the members to continue to support annual fund. Ms. Hansen asked for clarification on our mission statement relative to the supporting endowment vs. annual fund. Mr. Forbes noted that he is asking us to give to both.
V. Campus Report
Ms. Cania thanked the Council Membership for all we do for SLU. The monthly update will go out next week, but some of the highlights include: 85% of the Class of 2015 had some experiential learning (this is up from 65% a couple years ago); experiential learning is supported by faculty & staff. Last year’s class (2014) had a 97% placement rate, which is very competitive in our peer group. The fall Class (2019) is currently at 695 (down from 703
deposits). Admissions is projecting 670 enrollees, of whom 18% are legacies; and 22% will be international or students of color. 4 Faculty members were awarded tenure this year. A total of 55 faculty were tenured in last 5 years. The new statistics major has been approved. 750 alumni & guests participated in reunion and the total of reunion giving was $5.6M. President Fox’s speeches can be found on the President’s website. Ms. Cania encouraged us to read them as they are wonderful and inspirational.
St. Lawrence hosted the NCAA Track & Field national championship in June and one SLU student won her 2nd national title, this time in the long jump. The Owen D. Young Library has a new seminar room and larger classrooms.
The endowment return is matching benchmark, which it usually does, and stands at $286M. Ms. Hanson asked how the number of PhDs in tenured SLU faculty compare to our peer group. Ms. Cania noted that of the faculty on tenure track, 98% have their doctorate. Some adjuncts in FYP have their Masters. The University is committed to full-time faculty.
VI. Treasurer’s Report
Ms. Kuno reported that the budget on track. Projected revenue for the year is $47,414. Revenue to date, including University support, is $30,132. Expenses for the year were budgeted at $36,850 and are currently at $14,867. Ms. Kuno reminded the members that additional revenue will be generated from the Silent Auction in October. The Auction target this year is $17,214 or more. Also, many Committees have significant expenses in the Fall.
Ms. Kuno reminded the group that our budget is based on a calendar year (vs. the University’s budget which is a fiscal year). In terms of expenses, the $1000 budgeted for the online auction platform is actually $1500. The full budget was provided to all members in their packet. No questions were raised.
VII. Committee Reports
President Forbes called the committee chairs to deliver reports on behalf of their committees.
a. Advancement & Engagement
Mr. McLaughlin introduced his terrific committee, which includes a number of returning members; several great new members; and one “defector”. He noted that A&E is the only committee that has emeriti members and he is fortunate that they are willing to help out. Joe Keniston is the staff liaison, along with Barb Knauf and Kim Hissong. Joe is in a new position focused exclusively on Laurentian Engagement.
Tom Pynchon provided an update on University Advancement during the Committee meeting. He is building his team to prepare for capital campaign. In Fiscal 14-15, we are slightly behind on metrics, with total giving down and total number of donors down. The 1856 Challenge was a shot in the arm, netting 2581 donors (1860 alums; 350 first time (64 alums); 456 lapsed alum donors.) Of first time donors who gave last year, 1/3 renewed this year.
Mr. McLaughlin reported that the A&E Committee will retain its sub-committee structure and will continue core work:
• L4L week and messaging (Leader: Lee);
• Homecoming/Reunion (Leader: Halstead) – sponsoring trivia night at Pub 56 and breakfast during Reunion;
• Social media (Leader: Slater) – promote AEC activities;
• Laurentian Networks (Leader: Lloyd) – support and mentor Laurentian network pilots in LA, Denver & Buffalo.
A&E will continue to support other initiatives that are staff driven, such as Laurentians in Residence; First time donor calls; and Accolades. Opportunities to sign up for these important programs will be included in the post-Canaras survey.
The Committee also took time to brainstorm what else we should be doing. Three ideas were generated: using AEC to help identify key volunteers for reunion chairs, class agents, LIR. Leverage affinity groups, such as greeks, sports, theme cottages, FYP, Saints, and develop engagement with them specifically. Assist to drive more off-campus activities during L4L week. These ideas will be discussed with Joe Keniston as he was unavailable to attend our Committee Meeting.
b. Finance & Resources
Ms. Kuno thanked her Committee and attributed Rock Star status on all of them. The Silent Auction has been increasingly successful over the last 2 years. Now the challenge is to sustain this success. This fall, we will be working with Schoolauction.net and utilizing their platform to broaden the reach of the auction. Ms. Kuno encouraged the members to take a look at their website. Over the next 4 months, donated items will be put online so that they are available to preview starting in Sept. The Committee is targeting 100 items and have engaged emeriti and Parents Committee to achieve this expansion. Please expect a call from Ms. Kuno about donations. The most popular items are those that connect to SLU, are experiential and/or involve lots of scarlet & brown! Ms. Hansen will work again on collection. Mr. McKee and Ms. Faulkner will handle publicity of auction. Ms. Slater will help with social media. Ms. Vasquez will help with technology. Ms. Williams will help create brochures. Ms. Hansen asked Ms. Kuno to clarify the date of the auction. Ms. Kuno noted that it is the first weekend of Oct. 2-3 during Family Weekend. A group of volunteers have been recruited to be on site during the auction. The student delegates will recruit other students to help support the auction and the use of the mobile platform to place bids.
A second focus for this Committee is a car raffle to significantly expand resources. Mr. Sprague has run a car raffle before and will help us move forward. The Committee believes there is the potential to raise $50k. Raffle tickets would be sold throughout the year, starting at homecoming, with the actual raffle to occur at reunion. This effort will be tabled until after the Silent Auction due to finite resources.
The third focal point of the Committee is to determine how our additional revenue will be spent. In recent years, Committees have been reluctant to ask for more funding because of our tight budget. The Committee has talked about supporting the endowment fund, which would require the approval of AEC, setting aside funds each year to sustain student internships. They are also discussing an endowment to sustain AECs activities by building a fund that would help supplement the operating budget of the Council in the event of rainy days.
c. Membership & Honors
In Mr. Chatterjee’s absence, Mr. Forbes provided the M&H update. 15 new Council members will be added in the coming year, including expansion and replacing retiring members. M&H’s goal is to complete this recruitment by the end of calendar year so they can focus on the new officer slate in the spring. 4 kinds of people are targeted for new membership: connectors, creative, engagers and executers. Ms. Jan Williams also noted that the committee will continue to seek diversity in class year, talent and geography. Members will be asked for recommendations for new members in the post-Canaras survey.
The full expansion to 50 members will be accomplished over two years so that the new members can be absorbed into the Council. Mr. Forbes noted that the expansion will require some cultural changes and will create some logistical issues. For example, the Canaras Retreat weekend is usually a family event, but that will be hard going forward with more people. Each cluster will have at least two new members; Group 3 will have 3 new members, and the remaining 3 groups will have 4 new members each.
Mr. Forbes also reinforced Joe Keniston’s remarks that we don’t have to be married to current ways, changes, such as adding back a 4th in-person meeting, could be considered. Although it is a significant commitment, Mr. Forbes feels that in person meetings are better.
d. Student Service & Recruitment
Ms. Terrillion started her presentation by thanking her committee members and then provided updates in each of the areas the committee focuses on.
Admissions – Of the potential students contacted in the Yield call effort, 40 deposits were received. Off campus interviews will work with Council to schedule Council members as greeters who talk to parents while their child is being interviewed and/or students prior to their interview. This personal touch has worked well in the past. Ms. Danni Weaver will manage the assignments based on where the interviews are taking place. These assignments will likely require quick turnaround; and Ms. Terrillion requested that Council members approached respond quickly. Last year, AEC members covered 10 interview locations; we would like to cover 20 this year. Ms. Terrillion noted that Jeff Rickey attended their Committee meeting and they brainstormed about referrals, noting that some of the best students are referrals. If any Council member has a potential student they would like to refer, please pass the information along to SS&R committee.
Career Services – The group brainstormed ideas with Mr. Ron Albertson, new Director of Career Services, which he will discuss with his staff. The Committee is mindful of not creating work for Mr. Albertson’s team. The Committee will continue to sponsor the Parents weekend breakfast and career panel. Parents Weekend is Oct 2-3, 2015. During our Fall meeting in Oct (8-11OCT), we will do mock interviews again, to help prepare students for upcoming real interviews. Last year, students with specific career interests were paired with Council members in that industry. This year, we will broaden the number of students interviewed. Ms. Terrillion noted that there will be an opportunity for Council members to sign up for the LINC program, but cautioned that not everyone will participate as the program is about the students and their needs. 75-80 students will being paired with someone who can help them with their networking. The Committee is working with the University staff to determine how it will work. Additional details will be forthcoming.
NYC Semester – Typically Council sponsors an event with the students in NYC. This year the Committee is evaluating doing something a little different, such as partnering with the Polo event that Ms. Terrillion hosts in Greenwich, CT. This would result in a cost savings for the AEC, but would require the students to come early. Ms. Kuno asked if there was any discussion with staff of extending networking events for students in other cities such as Boston. Ms. Terrillion noted that they have discussed a networking event in Boston for students, however the University doesn’t have staff available to support it at this time. Mr. Forbes noted that the SLU Connects model in DC was very successful and there is interest in doing more. The next city targeted is Albany, NY.
VIII. Student Delegate Report
The 4 Student Delegates, Ms. Maya Williams, Mr. Hyde, Ms. Goulet and Ms. Vazquez, provided their report. They have identified social media and advertising AEC as their objective during their year on Council. They noted that AEC does a lot on campus and they feel there is a need to publicize what we do to increase awareness. Ms. Williams noted that she would like to see alumni connections in DC expand to support internships and experiential learning. All 4 delegates confirmed that are fully available to support AEC and are invested in the silent auction. Ms. Goulet noted that since all 4 delegates are seniors, they feel it would be productive to identify more ways for alumni to reach out to seniors and reinforce L4L, making sure that the student body knows that there are ways to be involved after they graduate. Mr. Hyde feels that
the 4 delegates represent a broad cross-section of campus and offered to assist Council if there’s anything we don’t understand about campus. Mr. Forbes thanked the Delegates for their report.
IX. New Business
1. Two resolutions to the AEC By-laws were presented for discussion and vote by the membership:
“RESOLVED, that the Alumni Executive Council adopts by-laws as proposed and further, be it RESOLVED, that these by-laws be amended as needed going forward.”
The motion to accept the resolution was made by Ms. Terrillion with a 2nd by Mr. Cassler. During discussion, Ms. Hansen noted that the modified by-laws does not discuss how to deactivate a member. Mr. Forbes noted that this would be very situational and that it was felt wisest to maintain the maximum level of flexibility on this topic. Ms. Hansen noted that the by-laws should state that we CAN get rid of members if need be. Mr. Forbes responded that the attendance policy does address that. Further, we will likely amend the by-laws again in the fall and can address these and additional issues. Ms. Hansen further noted that the by-laws state that the secretary will attend all meetings and record meetings in a book. To which book is this referring? Finally, Ms. Hansen stated that it is usually appropriate for dual signatures to be required on checks for internal controls (Section 5). Ms. Cania noted that all disbursements are handled by the University. Mr. Forbes returned to the motion on the floor and a vote was taken. One opposed; 25 in favor. The motion passed.
“RESOLVED, that the Alumni Executive Council adopts the recommendations proposed by the Attendance Working Group and that those recommendations be adopted into the Council's by-laws in due course.”
The Attendance working group made 4 recommendations as outlined in the Attendance Working Group work product. Mr. Forbes called for a motion to accept the resolution, which was provided by Mr. Olivo and seconded by Ms. D. Weaver. Ms. Hansen suggested that verbiage describing these new policies should be incorporated in the bylaws. Mr. Forbes agreed that this will be done in the Fall when the By-Laws are amended. All in favor 26; opposed 0. The motion passed.