May 16, 2017
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Board of Trustees Approves Measures to Reduce Deficit, Awards Contracts and Tenure

GSU Board of Trustees, Dr. Elaine P. Maimon, and Provost Deborah Bordelon in the Hall of Governors

The Governors State University Board of Trustees convened Friday, May 12, its final meeting of the fiscal year.

In a room filled to capacity, Chair Ormsby acknowledged the serious challenges faced by the university and the “painful steps” that must be taken to protect the institution while remaining deeply committed to GSU’s mission and service to the region.

In her address, President Maimon thanked the board for its commitment to the university and its financial health. Acknowledging the Academic Program Review Committee and Planning and Budget Advisory Council for their achievements in strategic cost-cutting measures, Dr. Maimon said, “We can face hard times by working together and standing united as a GSU community committed to our mission of student success.”

The board approved continued spending at FY17 levels as the university awaits developments in Springfield for FY18. The board also approved honorary degree candidates, cost-saving measures that would address the university’s budget deficit due to the ongoing state budget crisis, and the tenure of nine faculty members. 

Award of Tenure

Despite challenging financial circumstances, the university demonstrated its commitment to investing in quality faculty by awarding tenure to nine faculty members from all colleges and the library. In their remarks to the board, President Maimon, Provost Deborah Bordelon, and Faculty Senate President Barbara Winicki acknowledged the hard work of the faculty members and thanked them for their investment and contribution to the university. The newly tenured faculty members are:

  • Dr. DeLawnia Comer-HaGans, Department of Health Administration
  • Dr. Timothy Harrington, Division of Education
  • Dr. Deborah James, Division of Communication
  • Dr. Praggyan (Pam) Mohanty, Division of Management, Marketing, and Entrepreneurship
  • Dr. Zo Ramamonjiarivelo, Department of Health Administration
  • Dr. Patrick Santoro, Division of Communication
  • Mr. Josh Sopiarz, University Library
  • Dr. Renee Theiss, Departments of Physical Therapy and Occupational Therapy
  • Dr. Ellie Walsh, Division of Humanities and Social Sciences

Tribute to Student Trustee

The board offered a heartfelt tribute to Yolanda Pitts’s two-term service as Student Trustee. In her time as GSU’s student representative on the board, Ms. Pitts has spoken in Springfield about the importance of funding higher education. She has also served as Student Senate Ambassador, President of Delta Mu Delta, President of Tau Sigma, Director of GSU Transformational Gospel Choir, and on the Student Fees and Finance Committee.

Trustee Lorraine Tyson presented Ms. Pitts with a gift of appreciation from the board as they collectively wished her luck in her upcoming graduation and new career as a Certified Public Accountant.


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