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  Cornell University

The University Faculty

Office of the Dean

3.2 Officers and Membership

3.2.1 Officers

The officers of the Senate shall consist of the following:

(a)  The President of the University, who will serve as ex officio President of the Senate.

(b)  The Speaker, who will serve as an impartial moderator of Senate meetings. The Speaker shall be selected by the Senate, which may also select an alternate Speaker to serve in the absence of the Speaker.

(c)  One or more Parliamentarians to be appointed by the Speaker at his or her discretion.

(d)  Such other officers as may be provided for from time to time by the Senate, to be selected in such manner as it may determine.

3.2.2 Size

Faculty Senate (sometimes referred to herein as the “Senate”) consisting of not less than 75 nor more than 150 voting members.Within the limits specified in Section A above, and subject to the approval of the University Faculty, the Senate may designate its own future size.

3.2.3  Eligibility

Any voting member of the University Faculty tenured or non-tenured shall be eligible for membership in the Senate.

3.2.4  Voting members

(a)  The President of the University (or the Provost when attending as the Chief Educational Officer), ex officio

(b)  The Dean, ex officio

(c)  The Secretary, ex officio

(d)  The Ithaca-based Faculty Trustees, ex officio

(e)  Representative from the Cornell Association of Professors Emeriti

(f)  Nine members of the University Faculty (three of whom must be non-tenured) elected at large by the University Faculty

(g)  Constituency members as described in Sections D, E, or F below such that the total membership falls within the limits specified in Section A of this Article above.

3.2.5 Apportionment of Seats

(a) All membership seats on the Senate (other than memberships at large and ex officio memberships) shall be apportioned among the various consAll membership seats on the Senate (other than memberships at large and ex officio memberships) shall be apportioned among the various cotituencies as defined in Article I., Section I. at Ithaca and Geneva (hereafter called “constituencies”). Each constituency will have at least one seat on the Senate, except that constituencies with fewer than five voting faculty members may combine with another constituency (with the agreement of both constituencies) to establish a joint seat. Constituencies with more than 25 voting faculty members will have a second Senate seat. In addition, constituencies may elect an alternate senator to serve if the regularly elected senator is unable to do so. The alternate has voting rights and will count towards the quorum only when the regular senator is absent.

(b)  There shall be a reappointment of seats at least every three years.

(c)  All decisions on apportionment shall be made, and all questions and disputes concerning the same shall be resolved, by the Committee on Nominations and Elections.

3.2.6  Elections

(a) Members at large shall be elected by the University Faculty by mail ballot, in accordance with procedures established by the Committee on Nominations and Elections, from among candidates nominated by the Committee on Nominations and Elections.

(b) Other elected members shall be elected by each constituency to fill the number of seats assigned to that constituency. Elections shall be by secret ballot. All persons eligible to vote in a University Faculty election shall be eligible to vote in a constituency election. The voting faculty members of a constituency may allow other members of that constituency to take part in the Senate election.

(c)  General elections to the Senate shall be held in the spring and shall be conducted in accordance with procedures established or approved by the Committee on  Nominations and Elections.  (See Article VIII, Section A-2-c ).

(d)  Special elections shall be held to fill vacancies, or for other sufficient reason as determined by the Committee on Nominations and Elections.

(e)  Any question or dispute concerning general or special elections, eligibility to vote, assignment to a constituency, or other election procedures, shall be resolved by the Committee on Nominations and Elections.

3.2.7  Terms of Office

(a)  Elected members shall serve for a three-year term.  A term of office shall begin on July 1.

(b)  Terms of membership shall be staggered, in the manner determined by the Committee on Nominations and Elections, so that approximately one-third of the total membership of the Senate (exclusive of the ex officio members) shall be elected each year.

3.2.8  Vacancies and Leaves of Absence

(a) Any vacancy of a constituency-elected seat, arising from death, resignation, incapacity, or other reason, shall be filled by a special election within the constituency, except that if the vacancy is for an unexpired term of ninety days or less, it shall be optional with the constituency concerned to leave the vacancy unfilled for the balance of such term. In the event of a vacancy of an at-large seat, the Committee on Nominations shall appoint a temporary replacement for the remainder of the unexpired term.

(b)  If a member is granted leave for one or two semesters an alternate shall be appointed by the officer of the appropriate constituency as defined in Article I., Section I. to take the absent member’s seat for the period of the leave. If a member is granted leave for more than one year, his or her seat shall be declared vacant, beginning with the commencement of the leave.

(c) If any member (other than a member on leave) fails to attend any meeting of the Senate for a period of 120 days or more (exclusive of summer vacation) that member’s seat may be declared vacant, either by the constituency concerned, or by the Senate as a whole.

3.2.9 Recall of Members

The Senate may, in its discretion, provide for recall procedures, which shall authorize a constituency to remove a member for reasons specified in such procedures and to declare the seat vacant, provided that any such removal must be initiated upon the petition of at least 10 percent of the voting members of the constituency and must, to take effect, have the approval of at least 50 percent of such membership.


Source: The Organization and Procedures of the University Faculty, pages 12-14.

Last Updated: July 10, 2017 at 2:41 pm