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Inside the President’s Cabinet

Title changes, teamwork awards and a new website among top takeaways from Oct. 16 meeting.

By Dan Vaccaro

October 17, 2017

President Janine Davidson at a Cabinet meeting.Couldn’t make it to the Oct. 16 President’s Cabinet meeting? The Early Bird has you covered. Below are the highlights.

Title changes position University to better serve students
President Davidson announced several title changes at the meeting.

“We are making some adjustments to titles and org charts that may seem minor, but are significant in terms of our priorities,” said Davidson. “They will let us focus on what we’re trying to do with student success.”

Title changes included:

  • Cathy Lucas, vice president for strategy and chief of staff
  • Vicki Golich, provost and executive vice president for academic and student affairs
  • Sandra Haynes, vice president for academic affairs

Using existing resources, a vice president for student affairs position will be created and will be hired from a national search.

Finally, Davidson welcomed Dino Hernandez, the new vice president for university advancement and executive director of the MSU Denver Foundation, to the University.

DACA team wins first-ever president’s collaboration award
Davidson presented the inaugural President’s Collaboration and Teamwork Award to the group responsible for the University’s response to the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals announcement in September.

The group included Braelin Pantel, dean of students; Gregor Mieder, coordinator of the Immigrant Services Program; Ariadna Ochoa, specialist in immigrant services; Angela Marquez, associate to the president for HSI, Jamie Hurst, director of alumni relations and giving; David Fine, interim general council; Nick Stancil, deputy legal counsel; and students Iliana Chavez, Angelica Prisciliano and Saira Galindo Vazquez.

“So many people complimented me on the work you have done,” Davidson said. “It’s a great example of how breaking down silos, and taking a coordinated approach, can help us reach our goals.”

Davidson said she would give the award out as often as possible and encouraged the community to send recommendations for future awardees.

New president’s website to launch Nov. 1
Miguel Garza-Wicker, director of digital strategy for the Marketing and Communications team, debuted a new design for the president’s website. The parallax-style site is easily scrollable, particularly on phones. Besides looking modern and professional, it is strategically designed for maximum impact, clarity and ease of use.

One new feature is an “idea catcher” that will allow visitors to send ideas directly to the president via the site or on social media. All ideas, plus responses, will be visible to users.

The site will also be a gathering place for video, news and speeches, as well as information on the president’s vision and shared governance.

Make it a priority to attend a prioritization meeting this week
Myron Anderson, associate to the president for diversity, provided more information on the council prioritization meetings happening this week.

Anderson said the idea is to capture ideas, issues and concerns, and prioritize them, in order to help better inform the cross-cutting councils President Davidson announced in her Welcome Home address. The final iterations of the councils will be announced and filled by members from across the University community in November.

“At the end of the day, these are your councils,” Anderson said. “The ideas come from you, the prioritization comes from you, and we will use this information as a road map going forward.”

Sessions will be held in SSB 420 (CAVEA) the following days and times:

Wednesday, Oct. 18, 2-3 p.m.
Thursday, Oct. 19, 9:30-10:30 a.m.

And everything else

  • Fall commencement numbers are very strong and possibly record setting – so far 1,500 students have applied for graduation.
  • The next Executive Update is scheduled for Nov. 15. These events bring local business and community leaders to campus to discuss pertinent issues, in this case, President Davidson’s vision.
  • Let’s turn the town red – Don’t forget to share your Roadrunner pride by wearing red every Friday.
  • Encourage your students to take the student experience survey by Oct. 30. Students who do can enter to win a laptop or a free spring semester 2018 Auraria Campus parking permit.
  • A report is forthcoming at the end of November with recommendations for expanding sponsored research and grant opportunities for faculty.
  • Faculty Senate presented three Teaching Excellence Awards at its last meeting. Congrats to Jeff Loats, Jeffrey Parker and Sarah Schliemann.
  • Athletics put together a three-year strategic plan tied to the University’s plan. Director of Athletics Anthony Grant said a main focus is on collaborating with the rest of the campus to help reach shared goals.
  • This week the Student Government Assembly will host their counterparts from across the country for several days of idea sharing and networking.
  • President Davidson said that the next cabinet meeting will include discussions of emergency procedures and preparation as well as the Colorado Department of Higher Education’s refreshed master plan. Plan on attending to hear more.

Once approved, the full minutes from the Oct. 16 meeting will be available online. You can also listen to the meeting. The next gathering of the President’s Cabinet is scheduled for Nov. 6 from 9-10:30 a.m. in SSB 400. All members of the campus community are welcome.

Ed. Note: This story was updated with new information on Oct. 19, 2017.

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