James DabneySenior Vice President
Laurie WeaverJunior Vice President
Jeffrey MountainExecutive Committee Member and Academic Council Representative
Paul WagnerExecutive Committee Member
Femi AyadiExecutive Committee Member
The idea for the Council of Professors was initiated by Dr. Paul Wagner at one of a series of lunches President William A. Staples held for professors in 1995-1996. Also present at the lunch were Nick de Vries and Drs. Dale Cloninger, Bruce Palmer and Grover Starling.
President Staples invited Drs. Wagner and Cloninger to take the materials Dr. Wagner handed out and develop a committee to consider further the idea of the Council of Professors. Later that same fall, Drs. Dale Cloninger, Robert Hopkins, Oliver Markley and Wagner met with President Staples and Provost Edward J. Hayes to discuss the Committee’s proposal for the Council. The spirit of the proposal was accepted and on April 16, 1996, President Staples and Provost Hayes hosted a luncheon for all the professors serving the University principally in a faculty capacity. The idea of the Council of Professors was discussed at that time. Dr. Jib Fowles motioned that the Council of Professors be founded and Dr. Oliver Markley seconded. The motion passed unanimously.
It was further suggested that a directory of autobiographies of all professors be prepared. The Provost promised to pay for a bound directory through his office. Dr. Max Elden agreed to assemble the directory.
Subsequently, a bylaws and charter committee was formed and included Drs. Dale Cloninger, Max Elden, Robert Hopkins, Oliver Markley, Gretchen Mieszkowski and Paul Wagner. Drafts of both a charter and bylaws were prepared. Each was circulated to the President and Provost's offices for their respective review and approval. The charter and bylaws were submitted to all professors serving in a faculty capacity for their vote of approval by the first week of May, 1996. Both documents passed with overwhelming support including a provision defining active members of the Council and those "on leave" for administrative purposes.
Over the summer, elections were held for the new Council. Dr. Max Elden managed the election process. Dr. Paul Wagner was elected founding President of the Council; Dr. Martha Dillner-Moore, Senior Vice President; Dr. Andrea Bermudez, Junior Vice President and Drs. Robert Hopkins and Gretchen Mieszkowski as Executive Committee Members. Each will hold the office for two years. In October, 1996, the Faculty Senate recognized the Council.
All Council members were invited to vote on the initial agenda of the Council. With the agenda in place, the Council began addressing matters of emeritus status, an annual council lecturer, publication of the directory and so on.
The 1996-1997 academic year was the first year of the Council founded under the auspices of President Staples and Provost Hayes. It promised to be an important event in the history of the University of Houston-Clear Lake as the University's Professors were formally constituted as an advisory body to the offices of President and Provost.
In the Spring of 1998, a new slate of officers was elected. They are as follows: Professor Dale Cloninger, President; Professor Paul Wagner, Senior Vice President, Professor Max Elden, Junior Vice President; and Professors Shirley Paolini and Tom Harman, Executive Committee Members-at-Large.
Bylaws of the Council of Professors
- There will be one meeting each semester hosted either by the University President, the Provost or both. Additional meetings may be scheduled by the Council’s Executive Committee, the President of the Council, the University President, the Provost or by any three members of the Council who co-jointly submit a signed request for a meeting to the President of the Council. Upon receipt of the request the President has seven business days to send out notice of a scheduled meeting. Finally, either the University President or Provost may call a meeting of the Council by notifying the members at least seven business days in advance.
- The Council of Professors must review and recommend to the Provost all candidates submitted by the Colleges for Emeritus Status. Upon receipt of materials for candidate nomination to emeritus status the Council has two weeks to render a recommendation. Copies of recommendations will be sent to the Provost, the candidate and the college in which the candidate is currently housed.
- Members of the Council are expected to role model excellence in research, development or service.
- Members are to respect the Council as a "Community of Scholars."
- Members of the Council are expected to bring forward ideas that develop the Council as a community of scholars and the University as a credible center of higher education, professional training and learning.
- Upon being named a professor at the University, a faculty member becomes a full member of the Council upon the effective date of his or her appointment as professor except under the following two conditions:
- A professor is said to be "on leave" from the Council when he or she is considered to be an administrator. Individuals considered on leave for administrative duties are the University President, Provost, all other academic vice presidents, deans, associate deans, any person with administrative responsibility who participates in faculty merit evaluations and/or promotion and tenure process (except for being a peer review committee member) and any faculty member teaching less than two courses per semester due to administrative release time (except when the release time is for Faculty Senate authorized work).
- Emeriti members of the Council remain full members of the Council in every way save for voting rights.
All Professors, those on leave for administrative assignment, emeriti and those currently teaching, will be included in the Directory of the Council.
- The officers of the Council of Professors include the President, Senior Vice President, Junior Vice President, Academic Council Representative and two at large members elected from the membership.
- The senior officer of the Council will be designated the President of the Council. The President will hold office for two years. If the President resigns during his or her term, the Junior Vice President replaces the President. In that situation, the Junior Vice President will serve the remainder of term of the President plus an additional two years.
- The Senior Vice President will normally hold the office of Senior Vice President for two years following assignment as President. If the Senior Vice President resigns during his or her term, the most recent available Senior Vice President will be asked to serve the remainder of the Senior Vice President's term. If the President resigns during his or her term, the Senior Vice President will continue until the new President completes his or her term.
- The Junior Vice President will serve for two years prior to ascending to the office of President unless the President resigns or the Junior Vice President resigns. If the President resigns or the Junior Vice President resigns, a Junior Vice President will not be replaced until the next election period. The newly elected Junior Vice President will carry out the duties of the Junior Vice President until the President becomes the Senior Vice President.
- Three members will be elected at large from the membership to serve on the Executive Committee. Each term of office is for two years. There are no term limitations on how long a member may serve on the Executive Committee. One of these members will be elected specifically to represent the Council of Professors on Academic Council. If this representative resigns, the President will appoint a replacement from the existing Executive Committee until the next election period.
- The Executive Committee is expected to meet in executive session at least once each semester.
- Terms of office for all officers runs from May 1st of the year elected through April 30th at the end of the term prescribed by the bylaws for that particular office unless the President, Senior Vice President, of Junior Vice President resigns during the year.
- The Faculty Club is managed by the Executive Committee of the Council of Professors.
- These bylaws may be changed by a vote of the members during a business meeting.