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University Council

University Council serves as Whitworth's chief strategic planning committee. Composed of senior administrators, faculty, staff, and student leaders, the Council is equipped to provide definition, oversight and strategic leadership to the university’s highest priorities. Through its stewardship of the university's vision and strategic plan, Whitworth 2021, University Council will provide governance, creativity, and accountability as the university implements its vision for the future. The Council will be chaired and administered through the Office of the President by the President and his staff. Budget resources for the Council's operations and expenses will be covered through the Office of the President. The Council will meet monthly September through May.

The primary responsibilities of University Council include:

  • Monitoring the progress and implementation of Whitworth 2021 through key performance indicators, as defined by the plan, to provide accountability and assessment;
  • Serving as champions of the strategic plan to internal and external constituencies, including to the Board of Trustees;
  • Reviewing Strategic Initiative Fund proposals and making funding recommendations to the President;
  • Establishing a limited number of annual strategic priorities that signal important targets or areas of focus for the university;
  • Providing feedback and counsel to committees, departments, divisions and others with respect to strategic plan alignment;
  • Providing recommendations to the Vice President of Finance and Administration as needed to ensure a rational linkage between strategic priorities and financial planning and budgeting;
  • Periodically assessing progress on strategic goals and making adjustments as necessary; and
  • Serving as a committee of senior advisors to the President and the President's Cabinet.

University Council will have the authority to form special committees or enlist existing committees as needed to accomplish its responsibilities. Special committees can be composed of outside faculty, staff, students, alumni, trustees and other constituencies, as needed.

Membership on University Council will primarily be ex officio, i.e., as a function of the member's leadership position. Five members will be appointed to at-large positions from the ranks of faculty, staff, and students, each serving two-year terms. Ex officio members of the University Council are:

  • Interim President: Scott McQuilkin
  • President's Cabinet
    • Provost and Executive Vice President: Gregor Thuswaldner
    • Vice President, Admissions and Financial Aid: Greg Orwig
    • Vice President, Finance and Administration: Larry Probus
    • Associate Vice President, Institutional Advancement: Stacey Kamm Smith
    • Vice President, Student Life and Dean of Students: Rhosetta Rhodes
    • Associate Vice President, Finance and Administration: Luz Merkel
    • Dean of Spiritual Life: Forrest Buckner
    • Director of Athletics: Timothy Demant
    • Chief Information Officer: Ken Brown
  • Interim Chief Human Resource Officer: Ariane Mondragón Oglesbee
  • Associate Provost: Brooke Kiener
  • Dean, College of Arts & Sciences: Noelle Wiersma
  • Dean, School of Business: Timothy Wilkinson
  • Dean, School of Education: Ron Jacobson
  • Dean, Continuing Studies & Graduate Admissions: Randy Michaelis
  • Faculty President: Dawn Keig
  • Associate Vice President, Marketing & Communications: Nancy Hines
  • President, Associated Students of Whitworth University: Rachel Ayres
  • Director, Institutional Research: Wendy Olson
  • Director, Instructional Resources: Ken Pecka
  • Director, Library, and Associate Dean of Special Programs: Amanda Clark
  • Chair, Staff Salary and Benefits Committee: Vicki Daggy
  • Chair, Faculty Economic Welfare Committee: Kent Jones
  • Director, Assessment & Accreditation: Deanna Ojennus
  • Chair, Sustainability Committee: August Weil

In addition to faculty, staff, and student representation among the ex officio members, at-large members of University Council are:

  • Three faculty members (as recommended by the Faculty Executive Committee)
    • Mark Baird (Assistant Professor, Psychology)
    • Courtney Barajas (Assistant Professor, English)
    • Bi Zhao (Assistant Professor, Political Science)
  • One student member (as recommended by ASWU)