November 24, 2016 Meeting Summary

Board Members present: B. Cunningham, Chair; A. Giardini, Chancellor; A. Petter, President; T. Carlson; M. Cordoba; J. Earthy; R. Gill; A. Kessler; J. Kim;
C. Lewis; F. Robin; J. Stewart

Regrets:  J. Francis; J. Hinchliffe; P. Sahota


A.        Finance and Administration

a.         The Board noted for information SFU’s confirmation to the Ministry of Advanced Education of the University’s second quarter budget forecast and
             projections for 2016/17 to 2019/20.

B.         University Relations

a.         The Board received the Strategic Research Plan 2016-2020 for information.

b.         Fundraising Progress Reports: The Board noted year-to-date progress reports as follows:



Fundraising Progress Report
For Information 
2016/2017 Year to Date

To September 30, 2016


To October 31, 2016



c.         The Board approved the Terms of Reference for the:

  • Paul Higgins Resource and Environmental Management Graduate Award;
  • Friends of Simon – Gadhia Family Endowment;
  • Ted and Shirley Cohn Graduate Scholarship in Political Science;
  • Roger Odlum Graduate Bursaries in Education & Public Policy;
  • Patrick D. Morawski Award for Ethical Engagement;
  • Charles Allard Undergraduate Student Research Award;
  • Refugee Undergraduate Bursary for the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences; and,
  • Judith Glover Memorial Award for Women in Applied Science.

C.        Governance and Nominating

a.         The Board approved that Brent Sutton be appointed as Trustee of the Pension Plan for Members of the Academic Staff as University representative
             effective December 2, 2016.

b.         The Board approved that Bill Whitehead be re-appointed as Trustee of the Administrative/Union Pension Plan Board of Trustees as Poly Party
             representative commencing December 1, 2016 through to November 30, 2019.

D.        Responsible Investment

a.         The Board approved SFU’s commitment to measure and reduce the carbon footprint of its investment portfolio by 30% below the baseline
             measurement to be reported as of March 31, 2016, and to achieve this reduction by 2030 to match Canada’s national climate commitment.  The
             Board Chair noted that the motion was the culmination of an engaged and highly collaborative process that had occurred over the preceding two
             years. He and President Petter credited the efforts of various student advocacy groups on campus whose collective efforts resulted in the formation
             of the RIC in late 2014, the University joining the UN PRI, and increasing SFU’s sustainable investment holdings within the endowment portfolio by
              committing $8 million to a socially responsible investment fund.

b.         The Board received for information two documents from the University of Ottawa concerning their responsible investment initiatives.

c.         The Board approved revision to Responsible Investment Policy B10.16 following consultation with the University community.

E.         Human Resources

a.         The Board received for information the Mid-Year Update of the 2016-2017 Faculty Renewal Plan.

F.         Other

a.         Board Chair B. Cunningham welcomed Mr. Jamie Stewart attending his first Board meeting since being appointed by Order-in-Council to replace
             Mr. David Poole effective October 21, 2016 to December 31, 2017.

b.         B. Cunningham acknowledged the presence in the public gallery of members of SFU350, Divest SFU and Embark.  A letter from Embark to
            President Petter and the Board of Governors was distributed in which Embark Executive Director Joshua Cairns and External Relations Officer
            Anthony Bramwell expressed appreciation to SFU for its commitments to confronting the challenge of climate change.

c.         The Board Chair also acknowledged the presence in the public gallery of former student governor Mr. Deven Azevedo and acknowledged his past
            contributions to the work of the Responsible Investment Committee.

d.         President Petter commented on the well‑attended October Convocation ceremonies at which honorary degrees were conferred on Evan Adams,
             Vivienne Poy, Tamara Vrooman and Lorna Williams, and the Chancellor’s Distinguished Service Award upon Russ and Ellen Cmolik.  He informed the
             Board that a post-Convocation appreciation breakfast was held for the 400 volunteers whose work had made Convocation so successful.

e.         The President reported on a number of recently released University rankings:  1) For the third year in a row, and the eighth time in nine years,
            SFU topped Maclean’s Magazine’s University rankings in the Comprehensive Universities category, and finished tenth amongst all universities in the
            magazine’s reputational survey. 2) In Research Infosource’s rankings of Canada’s Top 50 Research Universities, SFU ranked first amongst
            comprehensive universities for research income growth and third amongst comprehensive universities in Research Infosource’s “University of the
            Year” list.  SFU’s research income has increased 362% over the past 15 years and the rankings are testament to the productivity of the University’s
            research community. 3)  In the most recent 2016-17 Times Higher Education (THE) World University Rankings, SFU is ranked tenth in Canada
             overall, and eighth for citations.  The University rose in THE’s global ranking to place among the top 250 universities in the world.

f.          President Petter also reported on recent news and events connected to SFU Surrey, including the successful SFU Diwali Event on October 18 and
             Surrey Gala on November 17, 2016.  In particular, he commented on the November 8th official announcement by the Prime Minister and Premier of
             a $90 million commitment toward a new Sustainable Energy and Environmental Engineering Building in Surrey. The $90 million awarded to SFU
             under the Strategic Infrastructure Fund, and SFU’s $10 million land contribution, will cover the shell and the fit-out of the first two floors to be
             completed by the spring of 2017. Work is already underway to secure $26 million in additional funding to fit-out the remaining three floors.  The
             new building will house the existing Mechantronics Systems Engineering program and a new Sustainable Energy and Environmental Engineering
             program.  The Board watched a short video of the funding announcement.  The President noted that the project is the first of three phases of
              proposed expansion in Surrey.  The next two are Health Innovation and Creative Technologies.

g.         A. Petter informed the Board that the official opening of the Charles Chang Innovation Centre at 308 West Hastings Street took place on September 27,
            2016.  The Centre has 52 furnished rooms to accommodate up to 68 graduate students.  The second floor is a hub for RADIUS (RADical Ideas, Useful
             to Society), the Beedie School of Business’ social innovation lab and venture incubator, and will also host Beedie’s Graduate Certificate in Science and
             Technology Commercialization. The Board was informed that a video of the opening of the Centre could be accessed through the School’s home page.

h.         The President reported on his early November visit to Hong Kong.  Accompanied by a delegation from the University, he and 15,000 others
             participated in a SFU-led Terry Fox Run organized by SFU alumni in Hong Kong.  In addition to the Run, a reception was held at which David Fong,
             SFU alumnus and Director of Hip Shing Hong Group in Hong Kong received an SFU Outstanding Alumni Award for Service to the Community.  While in
             Hong Kong, A. Petter also met with Hanhai Zhiye Investment Management Group about the China Canada Commercialization Acceleration Network to
             further cement the University’s ongoing innovation partnership.  The President informed the Board that he returned to Canada for the November 8th
              Strategic Infrastructure Fund Announcement at SFU Surrey, while the SFU delegation went on to Jakarta and Singapore where a number of productive
              meetings were held with Canadian diplomats and University partners, and Advancement opportunities pursued.

i.          Joy Johnson, Vice-President, Research and International provided the Board with a report on recent research achievements and an update regarding
             key activities in her Office.  She highlighted 1) a number of multi-institutional applications, led by SFU, for infrastructure funding from the Canada
             Foundation for Innovation; 2) the recent establishment of the SFU Innovates Advisory Committee on which former Board Chairs Evaleen Jaager Roy
             and Lynda Brown-Ganzert serve; 3) a $1.86 million Foundation Grant from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research awarded to Professor
             Carlo Menon, Engineering Science, for his “Wearable technology to assist with hand and finger function” project; and, 4) $50,000 2016 Impact Award
              given to Dr. John Willinsky of the Publishing@SFU program on November 22, 2016 by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council.

j.          The Board received a report from Martin Pochurko, Vice-President, Finance and Administration, summarizing the major activities and initiatives in
             the departments within his portfolio as of November 2016.  He drew the Board’s attention to the Sustainable Energy and Environmental Engineering
             Building project at SFU Surrey that is proceeding well and on schedule, and the successful open house on November 16, 2016 hosted by Corix Utilities |
              as part of the public consultation process for the biomass heating plant project.

k.         The Board reviewed the report from Peter Keller, Vice-President, Academic and Provost on a number of activities and developments in the areas
             within his portfolio. It included data on international student enrolment trends broken down by nationality. Attached to his report were data for the
             period 2007 to 2016 for international undergraduates, graduates and total.  Also shown were data for increases in international student fees using
             2006/07 as a base year, including actual cost when factoring in exchange rates for selected markets.  Finally, data were provided for investment
              growth in international student financial aid and awards.


A.        Finance and Administration

a.         The Board approved a one-year extension of the Best Services Pro contract for janitorial services.

b.         The Board received a report from the University about the 2016/17 RFP process for Dining Services at SFU Burnaby.

c.         The draft minutes of and excerpts from the report to the Investment Advisory Committee meeting of September 23, 2016 were received by the Board
            for information.

B.         University Relations

a.         The Board received fundraising progress reports for September and October 2015.

b.         The Board reviewed the report of Mike den Haan, Vice-President, Advancement and Alumni Engagement on the recent activities, developments and
             achievements in each of the areas within his portfolio.

c.         The Board reviewed the report from Joanne Curry, Vice-President, External Relations on key issues in Government Relations and Communications &

d.         The Board received for information a report prepared for SFU by PGL Environmental Consultants regarding an evaluation of the health and safety risks
             to the SFU community arising from the expansion of the Kinder Morgan tank farm on Burnaby Mountain as part of the proposed TransMountain
             Expansion Project.  The Board supported President Petter’s request to send a copy of the Consultant’s Report to the Federal Minister of
             Natural Resources, with a letter reiterating the University’s concerns and objections with respect to the unacceptable health and safety risks to the
             SFU community resulting from the tank farm expansion.
e.         The Board reviewed the results of the Brand Reputation Research study conducted in early May 2016.

f.          The Board received for information a one-page information circular on SFU’s current major priorities.

C.        Governance and Nominating

a.         The Board reviewed the current Terms of Reference of the Governance and Nominating Committee and no changes were recommended.

D.        Responsible Investment

a.         The Board reviewed the process leading to the selection of the investment manager for the University’s Socially Responsible Investment Fund.

E.         Audit, Risk and Compliance

a.         The Board received for information the external Audit Plan for 2016/17.

b.         The Board received for information an Update on the Treatment of Key Risks in the Enterprise Risk Management Plan.

c.         The Board received for information an Operational Continuity Planning Report.

d.         The Board heard a report from Audit, Risk and Compliance Committee Chair M. Cordoba about other matters dealt with by the Committee at its
             meeting of November 15, 2016. This included the Internal Audit Progress Report for the period April 1, 2016 to October 31, 2016, and six other
             financial and audit reports.

F.         Human Resources

a.         Faculty Appointments

The following academic appointment  was approved and has been accepted:

  • Dr. Amal Ghazal, Associate Professor with tenure, History, 1 Sep 17

G.        Other

a.         The Board received the President’s Activities Report for September and October 2016.

b.         The Board received for information and discussed an Interim Report on the development of SFU’s Sexual Violence and Misconduct Policy.


a.         The Board received for information Government’s draft 2017/18 Mandate Letter for Public Post-Secondary Institutions.

b.         Other matters were discussed.


The next Board of Governors meeting will be held at 8:00 a.m. on Thursday, January 26, 2017 in Strategy Room 320, The Morris J. Wosk Centre for Dialogue,
580 West Hastings Street, SFU Vancouver.