The University of Wisconsin Oshkosh
Policy # [####]
University Staff Council Bylaws (GOV 7)

Original Issuance Date: MMMM DD, YYYY
Last Revision Date: MMMM DD, YYYY
Next Review Date: MMMM DD, YYYY







Approved 12-12-07

Updated – June 2010

Updated/Approved – November 2010

Updated/Approved – May 2012

Updated/Approved – August 2012

Updated/Approved – December 2012

Updated/Approved – June 2013

Updated/Approved – October 2013

Updated/Approved – January 2015


Explanatory Note (2012 Changes): Additional language describes and explains changes in the role/function of the USC.

In 2001, the framework was developed for the university staff to share their voice on our campus. The University Staff Council (USC) was established for this purpose. Section 36.115 of the Wisconsin Statutes made various changes to UW System policies and procedures, relating to the university staff. As part of the implementation of these changes, it became necessary, desirable and appropriate for a substantive discussion with university staff to determine whether there was strong support for USC to formally serve as the official governance body having voting power for all university staff and to solely act on their behalf. This change in the governance role was approved by a majority of the university staff at UW Oshkosh. With the implementation of the newly presented University Personnel Structure, USC will officially be incorporated into the shared governance structure within University of Wisconsin Oshkosh, to the extent as authorized by state statute, and as consistent with any applicable policies, procedures and regulations put forth by the Board of Regents of the University of Wisconsin System.

All truly successful organizations recognize the value and the importance of the contributions and suggestions that are made by its employees. The University of Wisconsin Oshkosh, with an established tradition of shared governance, recognizes the tremendous value of suggestions received from all segments of the University’s community, including those from the members of the university staff. The University Staff Council was created and established to ensure that all members of the university staff have the opportunity to be actively involved in setting the priorities and future direction for the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh.

In 2012, as this new role was established, the University Staff at UW Oshkosh expressed support for the principles, the processes, and the practice of effective, engaged, and transparent shared governance at the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh.


All university staff who work at the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh will have opportunities to help shape and advance the University through active and involved patterns of collegial communication and interaction with the University’s administration and groups and organizations participating in the process of shared institutional governance as provided under Chapter 36 of the Wisconsin Statutes and any applicable rules, policies or procedures that are set forth by the Board of Regents of the University of Wisconsin System.


The name of the organization is the University Staff Council (USC).


USC is created as an unincorporated organization that operates within the administrative and shared governance structure of the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh. USC is charged with the following responsibilities: (1) To participate in the development of future plans for the University while also promoting and sustaining a positive professional environment for all university staff employees (whether represented, non-represented, limited term and project appointment); (2) To promote programs and services that support professional development activities; (3) To encourage informed communication among university staff and with the broader University community, including the recognized governance groups; (4) To serve as advisors to the Chancellor and other University administrators; and (5) To perform such other duties and functions as befits a voluntary organization committed to creating and sustaining an affirming and supportive operational environment that supports, promotes and encourages excellence in teaching, working, leading, and serving the community that is the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh.


All members holding university staff positions are eligible, and encouraged, to be a member of USC. USC has 17 members, each serving a three-year term with a maximum of two consecutive terms. The USC is elected by vote of all participating and interested members of the university staff at the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh. The seats within the council are determined by evaluating/analyzing the numbers of university staff constituents served in each area (i.e. Academic Affairs, Administrative Services/Chancellor, Student Affairs, Academic Colleges, Non-Represented, and Union Representation). These numbers will be reviewed every 2 years to update representation on the council accordingly. USC’s structure also includes a role for both a Historian and Webmaster, of which may or may not be current members, in the event they are current members, then they would hold voting power.


The Chancellor shall appoint an individual to serve as the Administrative Liaison to USC. In making this selection or designation, the Chancellor shall identify an individual with the background training, experience, commitment and current work responsibilities that provide orientation and perspective to the broad array of issues impacting the University. The Liaison shall be chosen from among the ranks of the faculty, academic staff, or administrative staff. The Liaison is expected to have regular and recurring access to the Chancellor and to the University’s administrative leadership. The Liaison is expected to be familiar with the University’s system of shared governance and have understandings and sensitivities that will ensure that the work of USC operates in an orderly and efficient manner with these other recognized governance structures and processes.


Terms of service on USC are staggered so that five or six seats are open each year. Individuals can nominate themselves or other members of the university staff for appointment to serve on USC. Nominations to fill vacant seat(s), and the subsequent voting for all members is done in May, with those chosen beginning their term in June. If an elected member leaves before the term is completed, the President will appoint a new member to complete the remainder of the term. The composition of USC is shown on Addendum 1, the University Staff Council Representation and Terms of Office Table.


USC shall have the following four officers who serve single-year terms: (1) President; (2) Vice-President (who serves as President-Elect); (3) Treasurer; and (4) Secretary. The Executive Committee is comprised of the four USC officers, with the addition of one elected USC member-at-large (elected for a single-year term), and an Administrative Liaison (as appointed by the Chancellor).


Explanatory Note (2012 Changes): Changes to reflect current practice and understanding.

The 17 USC members who have been elected or appointed to serve shall elect a Vice- President at the June meeting from among the 17 USC members who have been elected or appointed to serve. Outgoing members cannot nominate and do not vote. A newly elected member must be present to be nominated for an office. In order to be elected to serve as Vice- President, the individual must have been a member for at least one year prior to that election. In the event that the Vice- President cannot serve as the President, USC will elect a new President from among the 17 USC members. USC Secretary and Treasurer are elected for one-year terms. In addition to the election of officers, a member-at-large will be elected for a one-year term to serve on the Executive Committee of the USC. The duties and responsibilities of each officer are set forth below:

President: Calls meetings of USC and presides over the meetings, coordinates activities, attends meetings of the U-PLAN Council (University Planning, Leadership and Needs Council), and monthly meetings with the Chancellor. The President makes all appointments to Search and Screen committees and other committees requested by the Chancellor and assists Committee on Committees with other appointments. The President (or designee) distributes the agenda and minutes to the current council members for perusal prior to each meeting. The President will review and update the USC shared drive and give access to approved USC users.

Vice- President: Serves as Acting President (and performs all of those duties) when the President is absent or unable to perform those duties. Attends U-PLAN meetings and monthly meetings with the Chancellor. Becomes President after completing one-year service as Vice- President.

Treasurer: Manages, reconciles and reports on the budget to USC at all monthly meetings. The Treasurer oversees all payments for USC and USDAD any associated bills or obligations. Attends the monthly meetings of the Executive Committee.

Secretary: Ensures that all meeting notices are published and provided consistent with the requirements of the Wisconsin Open Meetings law. Places the agendas online prior to all USC meetings. Takes approved minutes of USC meetings and sends to USC webmaster, historian, and university staff and saves a copy in USC files on the shared directory. Attends meetings of the Executive Committee and accompanies the President and Vice-President to monthly meetings with the Chancellor with the duty of taking minutes.


Scheduling: Regular meetings of USC shall be held bi-weekly, with the understanding that the July meeting will not be held unless there is some pressing business that requires a change in the meeting schedule. USC meetings are open to all University employees and are held between 7:45 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Members of USC will be allowed to attend meetings in paid status. Any employee serving as an elected member of USC who is assigned to work the second or third shift will use flex work hours to attend these meetings. Arrangement to flex work schedule will be discussed with the appropriate supervisor, and the Administrative Liaison shall actively help to resolve any issues or problems that may arise relating to these scheduling and workload considerations.

Quorum: A quorum for any meeting of USC shall be nine (9) members.

Attendance: Each USC member must attend at least 75% of the regularly scheduled meetings, unless excused, in a given calendar year to retain their seat. The President may identify persons with low attendance and USC may remove them from office by an affirmative, secret ballot vote of two-thirds of the membership. The President will appoint the next-highest vote getter from the most recent election in the appropriate category to fill the remainder of the term. If no one is able to serve who had been on the ballot, the President may appoint any eligible university staff member in the appropriate category.

Leave of Absence: If a USC member knows he or she will not be able to attend meetings for a period of time, he or she may request a leave of absence from these assigned responsibilities. Leaves may be requested for up to one calendar year. The President will appoint an eligible university staff member from the appropriate category to serve on USC during the absence. Replacement members have full voting rights and privileges. USC members requesting a leave longer than one year are encouraged to resign from USC.


Explanatory Note (2012 Changes): Changes to reflect current practice and understanding.

USC committees may be established by a majority vote of USC, and each will include at least one USC member, and one of those USC members will serve as liaison to USC. All committees select their own chair from among themselves. Committee meetings may be held during paid work hours. Any employee serving as an elected member of the Council and working second or third shift will use flex work hours to attend Committee meetings, and the Administrative Liaison shall provide support and assistance toward this end, if needed. Arrangement to flex work schedule shall be discussed with the appropriate supervisor. Committees are reviewed annually and those that are no longer necessary will be eliminated by majority vote of USC. A representative from each committee will attend or provide the monthly USC meetings with updates on the activities of the committee. Terms for committee chairs (USC including USDAD) are limited to two consecutive years with another term of service allowed after a two-year break. The number of terms of membership on committees is not limited. Committee members must be in permanent employment status.

USC Committees – All USC committees are responsible to maintain a roster of duties and responsibilities.

Executive Committee: As noted above, in Article VIII, The executive committee shall consist of the President, Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer, and one Member-at-large. The President will call the meetings as necessary and shall reside over them. In extraordinary circumstances, and when necessary due to deadlines or timelines imposed by external parties or requirements, the executive committee shall be authorized to exercise the powers of the USC in the event that a quorum cannot be convened. All actions shall be reported in writing to the council which shall review and ratify or reject them at its next meeting.

Bylaws Committee: USC bylaws shall be reviewed annually or as needed and propose changes to USC as necessary. At least one member from the past year’s committee will serve the following year also.

University Staff Grant Fundraising Committee: The mission of the university staff grant fund raising committee is to raise funds. These efforts fund the grant program and other events for university staff through the endowment program. The major fundraiser for this committee will be done with assistance from the Foundation.

University Staff Grant Program Committee: Provides professional development opportunities to university staff members by offering grants for participation in non-credit conferences, seminars, and workshops. This program was established by the UW Oshkosh University Staff Council and is supported by a Perpetual Endowment Fund of the UW Oshkosh Foundation. This committee would oversee any additional grant opportunities.

Committee on Committees: The Committee on Committees (COC) will survey the university staff no later than May 1 of each year to determine interest and qualifications for service on preferred committees. The COC will find nominees for openings on the university committees. Committee appointees compiled by COC shall be presented to the USC President for consideration. The USC President will submit the COC recommendations to USC for approval. A confirmation letter will be sent to the appointee, USC President, the secretary of the Senate, webpage manager and the chair of the appropriate committee.

University staff serving on All-University committees will report to USC as necessary and at least once a year by May 1st. Members not on USC should report at a USC meeting as necessary or at least once a year.

Elections Committee: This committee is charged by the Council President each February. It is composed of three university staff members: One past USC President, one past Elections Committee member and one current USC member not seeking re-election. USC President will name the Chair of Election Committee. This person will be the convener of the Election committee. They will report directly to USC President. The Chair of this committee will submit election results at the April USC meeting. The Council will approve the election results at their April meeting. New members will be invited to attend the May meeting before their term begins in June.

Awards and Recognition Committee: This committee is responsible for selecting the monthly Star Award winner. The objective of the monthly Star Award is to recognize performance above and beyond the expectations of their position and responsibilities for university staff, limited term employees and project appointment employees. This committee is also responsible for soliciting nominees, reviewing materials on nominees, and recommending the winners of the Outstanding Performance Award (OPA) to the Chancellor. If any committee member is nominated, they are to excuse themselves from the committee meetings and deliberations. The OPA recognizes excellence in providing service to the University community and emphasizes its importance to the academic environment and overall reputation of the University. The Chancellor makes the final decision of the OPA.

Marketing Committee: Handles four responsibilities: webpage management, prepares and distributes the newsletter, publicity for USC and USDAD, and makes the decision of USDAD’s main giveaway item(s) to all participants (Joint USC and USDAD Committee).

Leadership Professional Development Program: This committee is charged with providing professional development and leadership training to members of the university staff. University staff will have the opportunity in the spring semester to apply to participate in the series. To be eligible, a university staff employee must have been employed at least six months at the time of application, and have written approval from their direct supervisor. Each person who applies will submit an application to the Leadership Committee stating their interest in the series. The Leadership Committee is comprised of 5-8 past participants. The committee will select up to 35 university staff to participate in the series and will notify the supervisor and applicant of the decision. The committee will meet in the off year of the series to plan the topics, dates and presenters for the upcoming year. A graduation ceremony will be held at the end of the series for all members who participated. A certificate of participation will also be awarded.

Compensation Committee: This committee is responsible for working with the Human Resources Office and other administrative units on the development and oversight of various policies, procedures and approaches to compensation issues relating to the university staff. (The specific charge to this committee shall be modified and adjusted as the work of this group continues under active development.)

USDAD (University Staff Development and Appreciation Day) Subcommittees – All subcommittees are responsible to maintain a roster of duties and responsibilities and they report to USC.

Special USC Committees –

The USC shall create such ad hoc committees as it considers necessary to assist in formulating policies and making decisions on special problems.


Explanatory Note (2012 Changes): Creates ongoing process for bylaw review and revision. Establishes a process that could be used if truly time-sensitive changes were required; parallel to provisions relating to USC business at meetings.

These bylaws shall be subject to continuing review and revision. At a minimum, they should be reviewed annually and any necessary changes made pursuant to the following.

Changes require an affirmative vote by two-thirds of the USC membership. This vote will be done at a USC meeting. Before such a vote will take place, members of the Council must be given notice regarding the intent to vote on proposed changes. All proposals must be discussed during at least one Council meeting prior to a vote on the proposed changes. In extraordinary circumstances, and when bylaw changes are necessary due to deadlines or timelines imposed by external parties or requirements, the executive committee shall be authorized to exercise the powers of the USC in the event that a quorum cannot be convened. All actions shall be reported in writing to the council that shall review and ratify or reject them at its next meeting.