(Fwd) Reappointment of Deans

Robert Drummond (robertd@yorku.ca)
Wed, 10 Dec 1997 20:44:54 -0500

FYI, as requested by Ellen. Regards, Bob
--- Forwarded mail from Ellen Baar <baar@yorku.ca>

Date: Wed, 10 Dec 1997 16:07:12 -0500 (EST)
From: Ellen Baar <baar@yorku.ca>
To: robertd@yorku.ca
cc: dbakan@yorku.ca
Subject: Reappointment of Deans

Pleascirculate this to the other members of the Governance Committee.



To: Governance Committee, Faculty of Arts
From: Ellen Baar
Re: Reappointment of Deans

I wish to encourage your committee to recommend that a full search be
conducted whenever a Deans term is scheduled to expire. A truncated
reappointment process should never be employed. A Dean may choose to be a
candidate for a subsequent appointment but a full search should be
undertaken. President Marsden emphasizes the length of time it takes to
learn the job and the expense of a full search. I would emphasize the
problems associated with spending too long a period of time without
teaching/conducting research and outside the professoriate.

The affirmative action concern associated with reappointment needs to be
addressed seriously. Without a search, the opportunity to recruit people
with diverse perspectives is lost. I consider this a very serious loss,
one which has the potential to reduce the probability of innovation.

Date: Sun, 26 Oct 1997 08:12:32 -0500 ()
From: Lorna Marsden <lmarsden@yorku.ca>
To: Ellen Baar <baar@yorku.ca>
Cc: lmarsden@yorku.ca
Subject: Re: reappointment of deans

You make an excellent point. However, as you will realize, there are
several immediate constraints. First, the three deans whose appointments
are up next June had their preliminary discussions with my predecessor and
were underway in York's standard process when I arrived; second, given the
severe financial constraints we all face, a "full" search is an expensive
undertaking if it includes advertising and considering external
candidates...there is no funding to hire external candidates unless that
can be accomodated within a faculty budget...; third, by the time a dean
has learned the ropes there is almost no time to actually accomplish
anything in five years. If we are going to change the proceedure it needs
to be thought through, budgeted and, I would argue, longer terms should
be established as some universities have. Otherwise, too much power
flows to the center and away from deans because they are too new and don't
know how to make things happen. At present, we do not have the type of
highly trained professional staff to make faculties run with or without a
dean (a model the research intensive universities in the USA use) so that
a Dean becomes a symbolic leader with overall policy direction but not muc
administrative responsibility; nor do we have a system which ensures that
an associate dean (with background and knowledge) always becomes the next

There is some serious work to be done on this issue and I take your point
about AA as an important part of that.

On Thu, 23 Oct 1997, Ellen Baar wrote:

> Date: Thu, 23 Oct 1997 07:02:52 -0400 (EDT)
> From: Ellen Baar <baar@yorku.ca>
> To: lmarsden@yorku.ca
> Subject: reappointment of deans
> Dear President Marsden:
> At the time that Tom Traves was reappointed by President Arthurs, those
> us involved in affirmative action argued that there should always be a
> full search. Incumbents of course could put forward their names but the
> process should not be truncated. The objective is to get the best
> It is inappropriate to advantage an incumbent. Furthermore,
> reduces the opportunity for those who are not white males to be
> considered. As well, if reappointment of incumbents is considered
> an incumbent seeks to continue, then there are not prerequisites which
> must be met before reappointment will be considered. One such
> prerequisite we argued should be an outstanding affirmative action
> record.
> As someone who should be more supportive of affirmative action
> than was Harry Arthurs, I would hope that you would reconsider your
> position and abandon an inappropriate precedent.
> Ellen Baar

Ellen Baar office: (416)736-2100 x77110
Division of Social Science, fax: (416)736-5436
York University
North York, Ontario, M3J 1P3 home: (416)961-1497

--- End of forwarded mail from Ellen Baar <baar@yorku.ca>

Robert J. Drummond, Associate Professor
Political Science, York University
4700 Keele St., North York, Ontario
Canada  M3J 1P3
Office: (416) 736-5265
e-mail: robertd@yorku.ca