Workplace Issues to be Focus of New Advisory Council
December 6, 2011 – A committee of senior and academic and administrative officers has approved a new council to represent Georgetown's more than 3,000 staff and academic and administrative professionals (AAP) on workplace issues.
Elected officers of the council will consult with university leaders on a variety of matters.
“The council is designed to address the concerns and unique experiences of the Georgetown University community,” said Georgetown President John J. DeGioia, after the Dec. 6 vote that created the Staff and Academic and Administrative Professional Advisory Council. “It will represent staff and AAPs on all campuses, which will allow the council to raise and respond to campus-specific and university-wide issues.”
Employees who work at least 50 percent of a full-time schedule, are not faculty, union, temporary, cabinet-level, members of the executive committee or senior-level executives will be represented by the new Staff/AAP Advisory Council.
The council will address concerns such as professional development, education and training, employee recognition programs, employment levels, work efficiencies, compensation and benefits and access to university community resources.
“The next steps will be nominating officers for election and drafting a constitution,” said Mary Anne Mahin, vice president and chief human resources officer.
Communication Across Campuses
Any member of the Staff/AAP group may vote and stand for election to represent the university’s eligible employees.
The Law Center, Medical Center and Main Campus will each create their own caucuses to review issues specific to each campus and to report to the Staff/ AAP elected body.
“I think the advisory council will help improve communication among staff and AAPs,” said task force member Andrew Henley, director of accounting services. “The solutions and good ideas are here, but we’re just siloed off from one another ... I think the council will break down the silos to allow for deep and meaningful dialogue between the campuses.”
The advisory council comes after years of research, work and review of structures and processes by the staff/AAP task force.
University leadership appointed the 21-member task force in December 2009 to make recommendations for establishing an organization. Members then consulted with and surveyed 23 peer institutions.
Sense of Empowerment
“We found that for many of the staff organizations at these institutions there was a sense of empowerment among the employees,” Henley said.
Mahin served as task force co-chair with the late LaMarr Billups, associate vice president for business policy and planning. Billups died on Nov. 11.
“LaMarr’s leadership on the committee was critical to the task force fulfilling its mission,” she said. “He developed a work plan that was thorough and inclusive … and brought to this committee … quiet leadership, determination and the ability to see all sides of the issue.”
The task force will share additional information with university staff and AAPs at the beginning of the spring semester. For more information, contact Mary Anne Mahin at firstname.lastname@example.org.