Board of Visitors

Board of Visitors Meeting June 19, 2015

The Board of Visitors met on June 19, 2015 in the Board Room of the David Student Union with Rector Preston White presiding.

Present from the Board

  • Mr. William R. Ermatinger
  • Ms. Vicki Siokis Freeman, Secretary
  • Mr. Anderson Hughes
  • Ms. Ann Hunnicutt
  • Mr. Bradford Hunter
  • Mr. Bruce Jennings
  • Mr. Scott Millar, Vice Rector
  • Hon. Gabriel A. Morgan, Sr.
  • Mr. Mark Rodgers
  • Hon. Ronald Tillett
  • Dr. Ella P. Ward
  • Mr. Preston White, Rector

Present from the University

  • President Paul Trible
  • Ms. Cynthia Perry, Chief of Staff
  • Mr. William L. Brauer, Executive Vice President
  • Dr. David Doughty, Provost
  • Ms. Adelia Thompson, Vice President for University Advancement
  • Ms. Maureen Matsen, University Counsel
  • Ms. Beverley Mueller, Executive Assistant
  • Dr. Lisa Duncan Raines, Vice Provost for Enrollment Services
  • Mr. Robert Lange, Dean of Admission
  • Dr. Kevin Hughes, Dean of Students
  • Dr. Jana Adamitis, Faculty Senate President
  • Ms. Lori Jacobs, Director of Public Relations
  • Michelle Moody, Esq., Director of Title IX and EO
  • Mr. Tom Kramer, Assistant Director of Government Relations

Captains Log Reporters

  • Mr. Jack Jacobs
  • Mr. Josh Reyes


  • Ms. Jennifer Williams, Daily Press

Rector White welcomed everyone present and called on the President for his report.

President's Report

President Trible said that this has been another remarkable year underscored by the fact that we had the largest graduating class in history. Christopher Newport has a 70% graduation rate this year and will graduate 75% next year. He also reported that the retention rate from freshman to sophomore is 87%.

The incoming freshman class will have 1225 high-ability students with an average SAT of 1160 and a 3.8 GPA. This year we will also have the largest President's Leadership Program class with 400 plus students and, in addition, there are 50 students enrolled only in the Honors program.

President Trible commended Mr. Brauer and his colleagues for the great job on moving the capital projects forward stating that Christopher Newport Hall is almost complete and will be occupied in July. The outdoor tennis complex and the enhancement to the softball stadium are almost complete and the construction of Greek Village has begun. The Alumni House and the expansion to Regattas will begin in the very near future.

President Trible reported that there has been great progress on the Comprehensive Campaign stating that virtually all parts of a great university are in place -- outstanding students and faculty, a beautiful campus and an expanding reach and reputation. He emphasized that our priority is to build a strong financial foundation. He said that we have every expectation that we will meet and exceed the Comprehensive Campaign goal over the next two years. He noted that one priority of the Campaign is to engage all of our alumni and he was pleased to report that the percentage of alumni giving has increased from 7% to 15%.

President Trible expressed his appreciation for the service of Ms. Ann Hunnicutt and Mr. Gary Byler on the Board and said he was pleased that Mr. Scott Millar was reappointed by the Governor for another four-year term.

Approval of Minutes

Rector White called for approval of the minutes of the May 1, 2015 full Board meeting and Executive Committee meeting. The motion was provided by Ms. Freeman, seconded by Mr. Jennings and the minutes were approved by unanimous vote of the Board.

Executive Committee Report

Rector White reported that the Executive Committee met yesterday and he asked University Counsel Maureen Matsen to report to the Board on the most recent work of the Executive Committee. Ms. Matsen said that the General Assembly has given the Board of Visitors and the Executive Committee very specific instructions on what is required from them and the Executive Committee has been working to fulfill those duties.

Based on these requirements, the Executive Committee recommends to the Board three resolutions. Resolution 1: Code of Ethics, Resolution 2: Statement of Governance and Resolution 3: Statement of Qualifications for Board of Visitors to be recommended to the Governor. The Executive Committee reviewed drafts of these documents and they were discussed and revised and are now being brought forward to the Board for approval. Rector White called for a motion to approve Resolution 1: Code of Ethics, Mr. Millar provided the motion, seconded by Ms. Hunnicutt and passed by unanimous vote of the Board. Resolution 2: Statement of Governance, Dr. Ward provided the motion, seconded by Ms. Freeman and passed by unanimous vote of the Board and Resolution 3: Statement of Qualifications, the motion was provided by Ms. Hunnicutt, seconded by Ms. Freeman and passed by unanimous vote of the Board.

Ms. Matsen explained that Resolution 4: Revision of the Policies of Board of Visitors of CNU is necessary to eliminate the indemnification provision from the University Handbook. The Handbook refers to authority of the University to indemnify or insure its Board members and that authority does not exist. Instead, the Board of Visitors is covered by the Commonwealth's Risk Management Plan. Rector White called for a motion to approve Resolution 4: Revisions to the Policies of the Board of Visitors. Sheriff Morgan provided the motion, seconded by Dr. Ward and passed by unanimous vote of the Board.

Rector White asked Ms. Matsen to brief the Board on the proposed Discrimination, Harassment, Sexual Misconduct and Retaliation Policy and Procedures. She said that the Executive Committee had reviewed and approved the proposed policy. Although, Christopher Newport had a good policy in place, in light of new legislation the President assembled a leadership team to review all of our policies and practices to make sure we were doing everything possible to provide a safe environment, support and resources for our students and staff. The team included the Dean of Students, Kevin Hughes; Associate Provost, Lisa Duncan Raines; Director of Human Resources, Lori Westphal; the President of the Faculty Senate, Dr. Jana Adamitis; Title IX Director, Michelle Moody; University Counsel, Maureen Matsen; and lead by Chief of Staff, Cindi Perry.

The team used numerous resources to develop the new policy including OCR guidelines, recommendations of the White House Task Force, work of the Governor's Task Force and the new laws adopted by the General Assembly. In addition, an outside consultant was hired to review the proposed policy. As a result, the proposed policy satisfies the legal requirements of Title IX, Violence Against Women Act and Cleary Act as well as the new state laws.

A significant change to the policy places the sexual misconduct disciplinary process for students and employees with the Title IX Director. Ms. Matsen said that training will be required for all members of the University community. In addition, she noted that this will become a stand-alone policy in the University Handbook.

Sheriff Morgan said that the Executive Committee had very good conversations about the policy and asked many questions and the Committee is pleased with the result and that everyone will be required to attend a training session. He thanked Ms. Moody and the members of the team for their hard work and moved to approve RESOLUTION 5. Mr. Millar seconded the motion and also thanked everyone for their efforts. Mr. Tillett said that CNU has established a model policy and program for other institutions in Virginia and around the country and applauded the fact that CNU is once again a leader in higher education initiatives.

Rector White called for further discussion and questions. He noted that this policy will be reviewed annually by the Title IX office and the Board and then called for approval of RESOLUTION 5 which passed by unanimous vote of the Board.

Finance and Audit Committee Report

Ms. Hunnicutt said there was a presentation to the Committee by the Auditor of Public Accounts and there were no written comments or concerns. However, the audit is not yet complete but a clean audit is expected. She thanked Ms. Belote, Internal Auditor, for her hard work and good job. She then called the Board's attention to the reports provided by the Committee and called for any questions or comments.

Ms. Hunnicutt said that Ms. Perry presented the 2015-2016 Operating Budget to the Finance and Audit Committee and the Committee recommends approval. She then asked Ms. Perry to give an overview of the budget to the Board.

Ms. Perry explained that the proposed budget supports the priorities of the University, provides funding for salary increases consistent with state-mandated increases and Christopher Newport's approved compensation plan, supports fringe benefit rate increases, provides funds to meet current and future debt service obligations and advances the goals of the TJ21 legislation. She reviewed each area of the proposed budget with the Board which totals $151,885,209.

At the conclusion of Ms. Perry's presentation, Ms. Hunnicutt called for any questions and noted that the proposed budget comes to the Board for approval at the recommendation of the Finance and Audit Committee.

Rector White commended Ms. Perry for her hard work on the preparation of the budget. Mr. Hughes moved for approval of RESOLUTION 2, which was seconded by Mr. Hunter and the budget was approved by unanimous vote of the Board.

Academic Affairs Committee Report

Mr. Jennings reported that the Committee had a good discussion and update on the program in Scotland at Glasgow. In the spring, 12 sophomores and juniors went to Glasgow and had a very positive experience and they expect the program to grow.

The Academic Affairs Committee had requested that the Provost conduct a faculty salary study. The Provost presented his findings to the committee and they were very satisfied with the compensation levels and the guidelines used to establish the salaries. There had been some concern about the differences in salaries for male professors versus female professors but the study provided a clear understanding that salaries are comparable for each. Sheriff Morgan said the committee took very seriously the issue of equality in pay and he is pleased CNU is doing so well. This study focused on gender but a further study will focus on race. The Provost has also been requested to gather data regarding the expenditures of each department to better understand how to allocate resources in the future.

Mr. Jennings reported that a study is also being conducted to determine what our students are doing four years after graduation and how they are applying their degrees. That report is expected in the fall.

There being no further business, the meeting was adjourned.

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