University of North Florida
Board of Trustees

  • Meeting
September 30, 2009
University Center at 3:00 p.m.

Trustees in Attendance

Dr. Edythe Abdullah, Mr. John Barnes, Mr. Luther Coggin (via conference), Mr. Wilfredo Gonzalez, Mr. Hugh Greene, Mrs. Ann Hicks, Mrs. Joannie Newton, Mrs. Wanyonyi Kendrick, Mrs. Joy Korman, Dr. Katherine Robinson, Dr. Bruce Taylor, Mr. Kevin Twomey

Trustees Absent

Mrs. Toni Crawford

Item 1 Call to Order

Chair Taylor called the meeting to order.

Item 2 Chair’s Report

Chair Taylor stated that he would forgo his report in an effort to attend to the business at hand.

Item 3 Presidential Evaluation and Compensation

Chair Taylor provided a detailed review of the presidential evaluation process approved by the Board on June 20, 2006. He reminded trustees that the evaluation process included the President’s submission of a self-evaluation, the canvassing of Board members to elicit their feedback utilizing a list of prescribed questions, two Executive Committee meetings (which were open to the full Board), preparation of a draft and final report by the Board Chair, followed by a meeting between the Board Chair and the President. Chair Taylor then talked about the fact that last year and this year the trustees had used a more streamlined process that he believes has worked well. 


Chair Taylor reviewed the streamlined evaluation process with the Board. He called the Board’s attention to a copy of a draft “MODIFIED PRESIDENTIAL EVALUATION PROCESS” dated 9-30-09 which was provided to each trustee. Chair Taylor suggested that if the Board was comfortable with the modified process, the Board might wish to formally adopt the Modified Presidential Evaluation Process. 


Trustee Hicks moved that the Board adopt the “MODIFIED PRESIDENTIAL EVALUATION PROCESS” as the process to be used in connection with the President’s annual performance review. The motion was seconded by Trustee Barnes. The motion was unanimously approved. A copy of the MODIFIED PRESIDENTIAL EVALUATION PROCESS as adopted by the Board is attached for the record.


Chair Taylor then led a discussion on President Delaney’s performance for 2008-2009. Chair Taylor began the discussion by providing feedback on the President’s performance for 2008-2009. He called to the Board’s attention the President’s self report. Chair Taylor noted that the President had a very good year in difficult financial circumstances. He said that the President has accomplished quite a bit both fiscally and has represented UNF extremely well. Chair Taylor cited the President’s outstanding job as President in Residence for the Board of Governors, and the advances made with our flagship programs, the Jacksonville Commitment and Transformational Learning Opportunities for our students. He noted that the list of accomplishments is impressive.


Chair Taylor then asked each trustee to offer their comments.


Trustee Barnes read a statement on behalf of the UNF student body lauding President Delaney’s leadership, his commitment to UNF students and his enhancement of UNF’s profile. A copy of Trustee Barnes’ statement is attached for the record.


Trustee Robinson noted that as the President of UNF’s Faculty Association, she is part of a group that includes all faculty presidents within the state university system. She said that conversations about President Delaney are always extremely positive by all people and all groups. The presidents of the various university faculties say extremely positive things about his political skills, demeanor and leadership and she believes that the stature of UNF has gone up because of his leadership. She noted that UNF is no longer thought of as one of the small SUS institutions.


Trustee Green noted that as he’s thought about what feedback he could offer in terms of ways President Delaney could improve, things that the President could do differently, he honestly would have trouble finding an area where the President has let us down. He asked the Board if it could imagine having to replace him. He said that’s not the only reason to be proud of the President. Trustee Green believes the President deserves whole sale commendation for what he has done, whether in the city, state or at UNF. He noted that the faculty respect President Delaney’s leadership and don’t blame him for the budget difficulties, which is reflective of great leadership.


Trustee Kendrick added that President Delaney is a faithful steward of resources at UNF. She encouraged the President to continue to take UNF to a new level in terms of resource management. Trustee Kendrick also highlighted the President’s strong leadership not only at UNF but at the city and state level.


Trustee Coggin added that President Delaney’s self-report was outstanding and that the President did an excellent job as President in Residence for the Board of Governors and in working with the legislature. He noted that the President had done this without additional compensation.


Trustee Twomey expressed his agreement with everything that’s been said and further expressed his strong support of and appreciation for President Delaney’s leadership.


Trustee Newton added that the President is superb and that the Board and UNF are so lucky to have him.


Trustee Hicks noted that she whole heartedly agrees with the comments of fellow board members.


Trustee Korman added that she has sat through other similar meetings and the economy has played a role. She said it’s encouraging how much the President has made happen in a dismal economy.


Trustee Abdullah described President Delaney as dedicated, a consummate professional, a lifelong learner, a true financier, a people person who cares about his people and shows he cares by being seen everywhere. She also commented that you know without a doubt that President Delaney is listening to you, that he is very much a relationship person.


Trustee Gonzalez noted that he agrees with all of the comments of other Board members. He added that the President has garnered tremendous respect at the state level and is viewed as a leader. Trustee Gonzalez said he is very proud to have President Delaney as our leader. He believes the President is very focused as evidenced by his self-evaluation.


Chair Taylor added that President Delaney has truly grown on the job and we are lucky to have him as our leader. Chair Taylor thanked the Board for their input and said that he would prepare a written evaluation based on their input.


Chair Taylor then moved on to a discussion of the President’s performance bonus award for 2008-2009. Trustee Twomey said that given the President’s outstanding performance this past year he would move that the Board award the President the maximum performance bonus allowable under President Delaney’s contract. Trustee Greene seconded the MOTION. The MOTION passed unanimously.


Chair Taylor then informed the Board that the President intended to pledge his performance bonus to the capital campaign. The Board was very appreciative of this gesture.


Chair Taylor then moved on to a discussion of the President’s contract. He reminded the Board that the President’s contract expired in 2010. He said that the President was fully committed to continued leadership of UNF through the campaign and beyond. Chair Taylor reminded the Board that the President had refused to accept a pay raise for the past four years because of the budget. The President has reiterated to the Chair that he would not accept a pay raise until budget conditions improve.


Chair Taylor reminded trustees that in anticipation of a new contract, last year the Board asked Dr. MacTaggart to perform a compensation review to assess the appropriate form that a new contract should take and appropriate compensation. In November, Dr. MacTaggart met with the Board and reported that the President was a high performer and yet his salary fell well below that of his peers. The Board Chair was to work with the President to finalize his compensation for 2008-2009, however no adjustment to compensation was made as the President again refused a pay raise.


The Chair suggested a two step approach. First, he suggested that the Board extend the term of the President’s contract with no pay raise, no increase in performance bonus pool monies, and no increase in retention bonus monies. This contract would extend the term of President Delaney’s presidency until September 30, 2014. Monies previously allocated for the President’s pension buy-in would be shifted to supplemental or deferred compensation. The Chair also proposed that the amendment include a minor revision to the termination without cause language of President Delaney’s contract to allow the President to fully vest in the Florida retirement system in the fall of 2011. It was reiterated by the Board Chair and university General Counsel that this would have no impact on the Board’s ability to terminate the President’s employment for-cause. 


Trustee Coggin moved approval of a contract extension under the terms described above. Trustee Barnes seconded the MOTION. During discussion, Trustee Kendrick stated that while she would support the motion, she believes that the Board needs to address presidential compensation as soon as possible. The MOTION passed unanimously.


The Chair suggested that as a second step, the Board authorize the Chair to negotiate the template for a new contract, consistent with the framework suggested by Dr. MacTaggart with terms to take effect when the university’s budget climate improves. Several board members expressed concern about not having a date certain for putting a new contract in place with competitive financial terms. Board members also expressed concern with someone other than Chair Taylor finalizing the contract on behalf of the Board.


Trustee Green moved that the Board authorize Chair Taylor to negotiate and execute a new contract with President Delaney, within the general framework of the recommendations of Dr. MacTaggart and with financial terms competitive relative to other SUS institutions, with the contract to be put into place as soon as practicable, but no later than October 1, 2010. The MOTION also authorized Chair Taylor to complete negotiations and execute the agreement on the Board’s behalf regardless of whether he is still the Board Chair at the time the contract is executed. Chair Taylor is to update the Board periodically on his progress. The motion was seconded by Trustee Kendrick. The MOTION passed unanimously.

Item 4 Adjournment

Chair Taylor thanked the Board for their participation and adjourned the meeting.