The Commission on the Status of Women exists to promote gender equity at the University of Louisville.
Responsibilities and Powers:
It shall be the responsibility of the Commission on the Status of Women to advise the President on issues related to women. The Commission will report directly to the President. Its functions will be as follows:
- To serve as the President’s chief policy advisor on the status of women at U of L.
- To monitor and assess unit action plans to implement the University’s responses to the Task Force on the Status of Women.
- To report to the President periodically on the progress of the units in implementing their action plans.
- To recommend to the President:
- additional initiatives that should be undertaken to make the University more welcoming to and supportive of women.
- new initiatives to support the status of women at Uof L
- To recommend specific and annual funding strategies to achieve the objectives of the President’s Plan and the goals of the Task Force on the Status of Women.
- To consult with members of the President’s Executive Cabinet, and individual units that seek assistance with implementing the Task Force recommendations.
Individuals who are appointed to the Commission should both be available for meetings and have an interest in the work of the Commission. Each member shall actively serve on at least one committee.
The Commission Chair will appoint a nominating committee to recommend individuals from the University community for membership on the Commission who fulfill the above stated objectives. Names of the nominees for membership on the Commission will be forwarded to the President for selection. The Nominating Committee will secure a slate of nominees for the office of Chair, Vice-Chair and Executive Committee as described in other sections.
Length of Appointment:
Appointment to the Commission is typically for a three-year period, with the term to begin on July 1.
For a vacated seat, appointment will be eliminated and a new three year appointment will be made to begin on July 1.
An individual may serve two consecutive terms. An exception shall be made in the case of a member who is elected to the Commission’s Executive Committee or who is appointed as Commission Chair. In such cases, an exceptional appointment can be made to complete the term of office with a cap of eight total years not including an ex officio term of one year for a Chair. The rules governing vacated normal-term appointments shall be followed in the subsequent filling of that slot.
Each appointed member shall have one vote. Under exceptional circumstances, voting will take place by ballot submission or show of hands when at a commission meeting. Voting may take place electronically in lieu of a commission meeting when notice is given to the membership at least one week prior to the vote. Voting exceptions will be determined by the Executive Committee.
A student member will be appointed annually by the President after consultation with the President of the Student Government
Association. Additional student members may be nominated annually by the Commission for appointment by the President; these nominations should be accompanied by a brief supporting statement.
Staff Senate Members:
There shall be one Staff Senate representative serving on the Commission for a two-year term. Staff Senate member will be appointed by the President after reviewing recommendations from the Staff Senate.
Faculty Senate Member:
There shall be one Faculty Senate representative serving on the commission for a two-year term. Faculty Senate member will be appointed by the President after reviewing recommendations from the Chair of Faculty Senate.
Fifty-one percent of the voting membership shall constitute a quorum.
The Vice Provost for Diversity and International Affairs, the Vice President for Human Resources, the Chair of the Commission on Diversity and Racial Equality, and a representative of each of the following: the Women’s Center, Women’s and Gender Studies, the Office for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgendered Services, the Office of the President, the Director of PEACC, the Office of Academic Planning & Accountability and the Athletics Department shall serve in an ex-officio capacity. The immediate past Chair will serve in an ex-officio capacity for one year in the event that the individual would not be continuing as a voting member of the Commission.
The Officers of the Commission on the Status of Women shall be a Chair and a Vice-Chair.
The Nominating Committee shall nominate three candidates for Chair of the Commission from those members who have served at least one year on the Commission. The slate will be forwarded to the President, in April, for appointment of the Chair. The Chair of the Commission will serve as an ex-officio member of the President’s Executive Cabinet as shown in the outline of the
Administrative Structure of the University and will attend its scheduled meetings. The Chair shall preside over meetings of the Commission. The Chair shall appoint any ad hoc committees necessary for the functioning of the Commission. A budget to support the Commission’s functions, including appropriate operational support and appropriate compensation, which may include release time for the Chair, shall be provided. The Chair of the Commission shall serve a two-year term and normally alternates between a faculty member and a staff member. Term of office will begin on July 1.
The Vice-Chair of the Commission shall serve in the absence of the Chair, assuming all duties as directed by the Chair.
The Nominating Committee of the Commission shall nominate a slate of candidates for Vice-Chair from those members who have served at least one year on the Commission. The Commission shall elect a Vice-Chair from this slate of nominees.
Elections will be held in March. The results of the election will be forwarded to the President for review. The Vice-Chair of the Commission shall serve a two-year
term with the expectation that they will agree to have their name submitted to the President on a slate for consideration for an appointment to the Chair position
The voting members of the Executive Committee shall be composed of the Chair, Vice-Chair, three members elected at-large from a slate of candidates developed by the Nominating Committee, and the conveners of the Commission Committees.
The members of the Executive Committee shall serve a term of two years. The immediate past Chair shall serve as an ex-officio member of the Executive Committee for one year following the expiration of the term.
The Nominating Committee shall be composed of a minimum of three members appointed by the Chair. Individuals appointed to the nominating committee shall not be candidates for the office of Chair or Vice-Chair.
The only standing committee of the commission will be the Communications Committee.
The Communications Committee will be responsible for the dissemination and publication of COSW information to membership and the university community. Items the committee will develop and maintain can include but are not limited to the following:
- website, newsletter and calendar,
- annual goals and report of accomplishments,
- nomination and new membership information,
- meeting, election, and regular business, and
- Commission sponsorships and events.
All other membership committees will be created and disbanded at the discretion of the Executive Committee, will support commission goals, and will be aligned with the areas of priority identified in the 1994 Report of the Task Force on the Status of Women and the 2009 Update of the Task Force Report.
The Commission will hold regular meetings at a time and place arranged by the Chair, usually monthly.
Individuals serving on the Commission should attend at least 8 of 11 regular meetings. Individuals who fail to meet this requirement may be replaced.
Staff support will be provided by the Office of the President.
Amendment of the Bylaws
These Bylaws can be amended only by a vote of the Commission membership, provided the membership has been appraised of the proposed changes in writing at least one week prior to the vote. Approval of Bylaw amendments requires an affirmative vote of the majority of the voting membership. Electronic voting will not be permitted for bylaw revisions.
These Bylaws and any amendments shall be effective upon approval of the President.
6/26/96 Approved as amended by the President
9/24/99 Further amended by the Commission
06/07/01 As approved by the President
11/21/03 Further amended by the Commission
01/09/04 As approved by the President
4/28/06 Further amended by the Commission
02/22/13 Amended and voted on by the Commission
02/25/13 Approved by the President