About the UNC Retired Faculty Association
Organizational History (Provided by Bobbie Boyd Lubker):
The UNC-CH Retired Faculty Association (RFA) was organized in 1986 to help retired faculty maintain meaningful ties through service and other continuing contributions to the academic community. Dorothy Talbot (Public Health) was first president. Other officers were vice president, Paul Munson (Pharmacology); secretary, Maurice Whittinghill (Zoology) and treasurer, Lloyd Yonce. Yonce served as treasurer for 22 years until the spring of 2008, providing continuity and an important source of institutional memory for the Association.
A copy of the RFA first directory is in the Association’s file in University Archives. A list of officers for each year since 1986 appears in the Association’s Web page and in the archives.
In recent years, the Association has launched a campaign to increase the organization’s visibility and to advocate for retired faculty roles in continuing service to the University. Activities have included jury duty in the School of Law, archives and Web page development, and expansion of membership categories.
In the autumn of 2006, RFA joined an international group, the Association of Retirement Organizations in Higher Education (AROHE). A member of the UNC-CH RFA was elected to the AROHE Board of Directors.
In 2007, UNC-CH RFA officers contacted Erskine Bowles, President of the Consolidated University of North Carolina, to seek help in identifying commonalities and differences among retired faculty needs and interests across the 17 campuses of the University of North Carolina System. President Bowles assigned Harold Martin, Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs, to facilitate data collection, discussions and actions on retiree roles and participation throughout the system. A pioneering tri-campus group of faculty retirees from North Carolina Central University, North Carolina State University, and UNC-CH met with Martin at the General Administration Building in May, 2008, to lay the foundation for collaboration among faculty retirees and administrators throughout the University System. UNC-CH RFA officers continue as major participants in these activities.
2009-10 Summary of Accomplishments (Provided by Andrew Dobelstein):
For the past year the officers of our UNC-CH Retired Faculty Association have been working to stabilize the association in order to improve our relationship with the UNC campus and to provide assistance to retired faculty who wish to continue a productive involvement with the university. We are pleased to inform the membership of the progress we have made and the efforts we expect to undertake in the coming year.
- RFA’s status in the University: After months of discussions with the Chancellor, Executive Associate Provost Ron Strauss and officers of the UNC Faculty Council, Chancellor Holden Thorp recommended that the UNC Retired Faculty Association become a separate organization housed in the existing office of the UNC Office of Faculty Governance. This proposal was approved by the Executive Committee of the Retired Faculty Association and made formal by a letter of agreement between the Chancellor’s office and the UNC Retired Faculty Association May 14, 2010. Our retired faculty association now has an official status with the university that provides the following advantages:
- University bulk mailing privileges: Our Retired Faculty Association continues to send out email, printed copies of our RFA Newsletter and notices of interest to retired faculty, whether they are paid-up members of the RFA or not. We have undertaken this because we are the only organization that keeps track of retired faculty members and continues to provide communication to those entire retired faculty for whom we have addresses – about 600 persons. Postage for this effort has been an expensive budget item, and use of the university bulk mailing privileges will enable us to reduce this expense considerably. We are pleased to provide this service, but it would help considerably if you become a paid member if you are not already. Dues are $20 per year.
- Representation on the Faculty Council: RFA has been offered and has accepted the opportunity to appoint two of our members to the UNC-CH Faculty Council as official non-voting members. Our President, Charles Milone, and our Executive Committee Member at large, Doris Betts, will represent us during the coming year. We hope to expand our presence as opportunities present themselves during the academic year.
- Use of the UNC official logo and letterhead: We now have approval to use the official logo of UNC and the Old Well and have permission to use UNC letterhead with our postal box address and contact information.
- Continued webmaster services: Dr. Anne Whisnant will continue to service our web site. At present the site is being revised and updated.
- Facilitating retired faculty access to campus: In March, Andrew Dobelstein, Charles Milone, Anne Whisnant and Joe Ferrell met with Brian Usischon at UNC Human Resources to seek assistance in several areas:
- Names and contact information for retiring faculty: It has been difficult for the association to learn about new retirees and to encourage their participation. Now Human Resources will furnish the Retired Faculty Association the names of all faculty retirees each year in July. A list of retirees for 2009 already has been received, and the list for 2010 should be received by the time this summary goes to press.
- PID/UNC1 Card/ONYEN/Directory: The PID/UNC1 card is the gate to participation in university resources, including parking. Heretofore, departments and schools were responsible for informing retirees how to maintain their email services, directory listing and UNC1 Card. Human Resources will centralize this activity in its office and facilitate the ability of retirees to maintain these resources. We hope that Human Resources will have these procedures in place by the time RFA meets in September.
- Physical access to campus: Bobbie Lubker, RFA’s campus liaison, continues to work with Executive Vice-Provost Ron Strauss to loosen the parking logjam. We encourage retired faculty to obtain a free remote parking pass from the University parking office and use the shuttle buses to campus. The lots are conveniently located, and the free shuttle service runs frequently, particularly in mornings and afternoons. Schedules can be obtained on-line from the Chapel Hill transit service. Of course, retired faculty can purchase parking passes at the full price and at sites where on-campus parking might be available; but since most of these sites may still require a shuttle bus to get where you want to go on campus, parking in a free remote lot is still the best option for getting to campus at this time.
- UNC Wellness Center: Don Reinfurt and a committee of members attempted to negotiate a discounted membership fee for retired faculty, but this effort did not succeed.
- University Day: RFA will survey retired faculty to determine whether they wish to participate in University Day celebrations as a group. Bobbie Lubker is exploring this with Vice Chancellor Strauss.
- Faculty Council presentation: On March 19 the Retired Faculty Association was invited to address the Faculty Council to update its members on some of these new developments. My remarks are posted here.
Conclusion: Our Retired Faculty Association has moved ahead to establish a stronger base that will begin to provide greater benefits to retired faculty in the coming year. Now all we need is an increase in paid-up members. Our strength is in the number of retired faculty, and our financial security depends on those retired faculty who become active members by paying the modest annual dues of $20. If you have not paid your dues, please do so to help your RFA continue to move ahead in serving you with these initiatives.
The RFA Executive Committee has set forth a list of ambitious goals for the 2010-11 year, which you are invited to review here.