The Gender Equity Council was formed in 2000 and charged to act in consultation with the Chancellor to oversee the development of programs that support goals, objectives and initiatives of the Ten Year Plan addressing women's issues. This plan came out from the Committee on the Status of Women in the University of Wisconsin system.
Post establishment of the Women’s Center, Gender Equity Council, reorganized itself to work with the Chancellor to represent:
“a voice for all women on the UW Oshkosh campus, the Gender Equity Council advocates ensuring that the needs of all women are recognized and addressed. As advocates, the Council will collaborate with and support other campus groups who are engaged in related endeavors and respond to current and emerging challenges with campus wide policies.”
In September 1998, UW System President Kathryn Lyall formed a 29-person ad hoc Committee to study the status of women on campuses throughout the System. Between October 1998 and October 1999, the Committee gathered information from several sources: statistical data through the Office of Policy Analysis and Research, a mail survey to a sample of University constituents, focus groups at each UW institution, and a poll of Chancellors to identify best practices. The UW System Report on the Status of Women was the culmination of the Committee's year-long effort.
Equality for Women in the University of Wisconsin System: A Focus for Action in the Year 2000, was issued in October of 1999. That report made five broad recommendations to be implemented at both University System level and at each campus level. Those recommendations were:
1. Expand educational opportunities for women students.
2. Increase the hiring, promotion, and retention of women faculty, academic staff, and classified staff.
3. Make the learning and working environment more welcoming t women, and especially women of color and women who identify as lesbian, bisexual, or trans-gendered.
4. Provide conditions that allow for balancing work and personal life.
5. Create an effective organizational structure for improving the status of women in the University of Wisconsin System.
As required by the UW System plan, the Provost's Office appointed a Task Force on Women's Issues to develop the University's ten-year plan to address women's issues on the UW Oshkosh campus. The Task Force was composed of faculty, academic staff, classified staff, and students. In response to the UW System mandate, the Task Force identified goals, objectives, and initiatives around the five major areas.