June 2020 EDUCAUSE Board of Directors Meeting

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At the June 2020 EDUCAUSE Board of Directors meeting, the members discussed a variety of topics, including EDUCAUSE finances, pandemic responses, plans for the “EDUCAUSE of the Future,” and selected candidates to stand for board elections.

Two hands keying on a laptop displaying two graphs

As is the case with just about everything else these days, the EDUCAUSE Board of Directors meeting went virtual this summer. On June 24, the board held its first fully online meeting. Given the current state of affairs, the board has also decided that all future meetings will be online until further notice.

The board completed a pro-forma review and approval of IRS tax filings and accepted the 2019 audit report findings, which were all positive. Vice President of Business Services and CFO Stacy Ruwe reported on the financial impact that the COVID-19 pandemic has had on the association and presented the board with a revised three-year budget, which the board unanimously approved. Along with addressing their fiduciary duties, the board members spent time considering a vacancy appointment to the board, selected finalists for this year's board election, and evaluated plans for how EDUCAUSE will approach the upcoming annual conference.

Next, EDUCAUSE staff shared plans for moving forward as a fully virtual organization. While ideas on how to become a fully distributed workforce had already being discussed before COVID-19, the pandemic moved up the timeline. EDUCAUSE will continue to maintain a modest office presence at the Internet2 offices in Washington, DC.

Since it became clear that the COVID-19 pandemic would continue to be a disruptive force, EDUCAUSE leadership has been hard at work building a strong and sustainable organization committed to serving our members and higher education. To this end, the team has worked to define and refine a future vision, including a commitment to being more focused, responsive, agile, coordinated, and efficient. The board expressed a high level of confidence in EDUCAUSE, with commendations in many areas for both the responsiveness and the agility shown in the past few months. Board members were quick to praise, for example, the EDUCAUSE QuickPolls, the significantly increased content consumption by members (40%), the timely EDUCAUSE resources related to the pandemic, and the information on DEI in light of the racial upheaval throughout the United States.

On the topic of board appointments and elections, the board approved the appointment of Celeste Schwartz, Vice President and Chief Digital Officer at Montgomery County Community College, to fill an open seat that had been vacated by former board member Rae Clemmons. Celeste, the recipient of the 2018 EDUCAUSE Leadership Award, began her term on July 6 and will serve through the fall board meeting in 2022. Celeste's experience and representation of associate's-level institutions comes just as the association is getting ready to say goodbye to current board member Joe Moreau, who will complete his four-year term in December. As is standard for the summer board meeting, the board also reviewed the nominees put forth by the Nominations and Leadership Development Committee and selected four candidates to sit for election for two board seats that will open up with the departure of Michele Norin and Michael Berman. This year's board election will take place from August 5 through September 2.

Because this meeting was scaled back from the originally planned, longer face-to-face meeting, some time was allocated for board members to discuss and/or ask questions about topics covered in the written materials provided to them in advance of the meeting. They were most interested to hear about the EDUCAUSE 2020 Annual Conference. Vice President for Professional Learning Eden Dahlstrom provided an update and shared that registration will open soon for both an in-person and an online event.

The next board meeting will take place following the 2020 annual conference.

Note: As always, more detail on this and other board meetings can be found in the official board minutes, which are archived here.

John O'Brien's signature

John O'Brien is President and CEO of EDUCAUSE.

© 2020 John O'Brien. The text of this work is licensed under a Creative Commons BY-NC-ND 4.0 International License.