Board Election Rules
The Board of Governors and Senate are the governing bodies at Simon Fraser University constituted under the University Act. The Board of Governors is vested with responsibility for the business of the University.
ELECTION RULES (“RULES”)
A. Elections for the Board of Governors
1. That subject to approval of appropriate rules covering nominations, elections, and voting:
a) The nomination and election of members to the Board of Governors under the University Act be undertaken in the Spring academic term, and completed by April 15th.
b) The normal date of assumption of office in regular elections to the Board of Governors is June 1st.
c) In order to be nominated, the individual must be eligible to hold the position being sought.
d) Terms of office for students, Eligible Faculty Members (as defined below), Staff Members (as defined below) are as set out in the University Act. As of the date of these Rules, the term of office for student members is one year; the term of office for Eligible Faculty Members is three years; and the term of office for Staff Members is three years. Elected members of the Board of Governors are eligible for re-election, provided that no elected member may hold office for more than six consecutive years (See University Act, Sections 20(1), 20(2), and 21).
e) For greater clarity, the student, Eligible Faculty Member, and Staff Member positions on the Board of Governors are ex officio positions. As such, if any such member of the Board ceases to be eligible as a student, Eligible Faculty Member, or Staff Member under these Rules during their term of office, they will immediately cease to be a member of the Board, and the resulting vacancy will be addressed in accordance with Article H. of these Rules.
1. All nominations of candidates for membership on the Board of Governors as Eligible Faculty Members shall be signed by not less than five Eligible Faculty Members entitled to vote in the particular election.
2. All nominations of candidates for membership on the Board of Governors as an undergraduate student shall be signed by not less than five undergraduate students entitled to vote in the particular election.
All nominations of candidates for membership on the Board of Governors as a graduate student shall be signed by not less than five graduate students entitled to vote in the particular election.
3. All nominations of candidates for membership on the Board of Governors being elected by and from Staff Members shall be signed by not less than five Staff Members entitled to vote in the particular election.
4. The nomination paper must be signed by the candidate who shall state that they are eligible to hold office; they are willing to permit their name to stand in the election; and confirm that they understand and, if elected, will abide by (a) Section 19.1 of the University Act, which states that members of the Board of Governors must act in the best interests of the University and (b) Section 4.1 of the Board Rules, which states that each member of the Board of Governors, regardless of how they become a member, must act in the best interests of the University and must function primarily as a member of the Board of Governors, not as a member of any particular constituency.
5. Each candidate for election to the Board of Governors shall be requested to provide a short curriculum vitae and a statement of interest on the candidate's views on related matters falling under the jurisdiction of the Board as laid down by the University Act. The combined information is limited to one page of single spaced copy. Photos will not be included.
C. Students and Student Association
1. For the purposes of nominating, voting and standing for office in the election of students to the Board of Governors:
a) i) the Simon Fraser Student Society is the undergraduate student society, and
ii) the Graduate Student Society at Simon Fraser University is the graduate student society
(See University Act, Section 19(1)(e))
b) "undergraduate students" means those who are members of the Simon Fraser Student Society and who also:
i) are in good academic standing and are registered in at least one credit course in the academic term in which nominations are due, or
ii) are registered in a co-op work term in the academic term in which nominations are due, or
iii) are designated by the Registrar and reported to Senate as an undergraduate student; and
c) "graduate students" means those who are members of the Graduate Student Society at Simon Fraser University and who also:
i) are duly registered as graduate students in the academic term in which nominations are due, or
ii) are designated by the Registrar and reported to Senate as a graduate student.
2. Undergraduate students are eligible to be nominated and stand for election as one of the two student members of the Board of Governors.
Graduate students are eligible to be nominated and stand for election as one of the two student members of the Board of Governors.
3. Throughout the one-year term of office as a student member of the Board of Governors, undergraduate students and graduate students:
a) must maintain registered status, as described in sections C.1.b. and C.1.c. above, at the University,
b) must not withdraw, or be required to withdraw, from the University.
D. Faculty Members
1. For the purposes of nominations and elections to the Board of Governors by and from faculty members, only those holding the following appointments shall be entitled to nominate, stand as candidates and to vote in the pertinent faculty member elections to the Board (“Eligible Faculty Members”): instructor or laboratory instructor; lecturer; senior lecturer, or university lecturer; assistant professor, associate professor, or professor; department chairs; associate deans; practitioner faculty; term faculty (also known as limited term faculty or non-continuing faculty); and librarians and archivists (librarian or archivist 1; librarian or archivist 2; librarian or archivist 3; librarian or archivist 4; division heads; library associate deans; and the university archivist).
For greater clarity, this does not include members of any other employee group that has standing at the university or any employees that are Excluded staff, such as (without limitation): Faculty Associates and Program Coordinators; visiting or adjunct faculty members; teaching assistants; tutor markers; non-faculty employees who are assigned overload teaching contracts or who teach courses on an add-pay basis; sessional instructors; non-credit contract instructors; post-doctoral fellows; research assistants; research associates; Associate Members who are not otherwise members of the Simon Fraser University Faculty Association; and faculty members with post-retirement appointments.
E. Staff Members
1. For the purposes of nominations and elections to the Board of Governors by and from employees of the University who are not Eligible Faculty Members, all persons employed by the University who are not Eligible Faculty Members (as described in section D above, whether part-time or full-time) shall be entitled to nominate, stand as candidates and to vote in the pertinent elections (“Staff Members”). This includes members of employee groups that have standing at the University and Excluded staff.
For certainty, this does not include individuals who are not employed by the University, such as (without limitation): contractors; Faculty Associates or Program Coordinators seconded from school districts; post-doctoral fellows who have secured funding from an external funding organization or a fellowship program which is external to the university and whose salary is paid wholly from such funding; and individuals for whom the University acts as employer of record.
F. General Regulations Covering Nominations and Voting
1. The due date for nominations shall be not earlier than 10 days and not later than 15 days following the date of the call for nominations in the case of elections by and from Eligible Faculty Members, by and from students, and by and from Staff Members.
2. The 'date of election' shall be interpreted to mean the last date on which valid ballots are due.
3. The period for casting online ballots shall be not less than two days nor longer than four days in the case of elections by and from Eligible Faculty Members and by and from Staff Members. The period for casting online ballots shall be not less than two days nor longer than five days in the case of elections by and from students.
4. In regular elections to the Board of Governors, balloting is to be completed no later than April 15th in any year.
G. General Regulations
1. a) When elections are being held for the Board of Governors and for Senate a qualified candidate may accept nominations to run for office in both those elections.
b) Candidates may not run for a seat on the Board of Governors from more than one constituency.
2. In the election of an Eligible Faculty Member to the Board of Governors, the Eligible Faculty Member with the highest numbers of votes shall be elected.
3. In the election of a Staff Member to the Board of Governors, the Staff Member with the highest numbers of votes shall be elected.
4. In the annual election of students to the Board of Governors, there shall be one undergraduate student elected by undergraduate students and one graduate student elected by graduate students. In the election of an undergraduate student to the Board of Governors, the undergraduate students with the highest number of votes by undergraduate student shall be elected. In the election of a graduate student to the Board of Governors, the graduate student with the highest number of votes by graduate students shall be elected.
5. If there is a tie vote between two candidates for one position, the winner shall be determined by a toss of the coin conducted by the Registrar at a time set by the Registrar and in the presence of the affected candidates or their representatives. Where there are more than two candidates tied for one position there shall be an additional ballot to choose between the persons concerned.
6. At the end of the balloting period, the Registrar shall, at the place, day and hour fixed in the notice of election, be responsible for opening printed ballots, or for downloading online ballot results and, in the presence of the candidates or their official representatives, attend the counting/tabulation of votes for each candidate.
7. The Registrar shall state the name of the persons elected. Recount of printed ballots or complaints concerning electronic ballot tabulation may be requested/submitted within 10 days of the announcement of the results to the candidates. The ballots/electronic data shall be destroyed after 10 days following the recount period. All candidates declared elected are to be recorded in the Minutes of the Board and reported to Senate. The Registrar is to inform all candidates of the number of votes cast for each candidate.
8. These Rules are intended to be in accordance with the University Act, as amended from time to time. In the event of any conflict between the University Act and the Rules, the University Act will prevail.
9. These Rules will be reviewed periodically, and in any event, at least once every five (5) years.
1. Where a vacancy arises in the case of an elected Eligible Faculty Member, an elected student member, or an elected employee of the University who is not an Eligible Faculty Member to the Board of Governors, a by-election will be held under the same principles as pertain to the regular election provided there is at least four months remaining in the unexpired term at the time for call for nominations.
I. The Senate Electoral Standing Committee oversees the conduct of elections to the Board of Governors.
Recommended by the Board of Governors – January 27, 2022
Approved by Senate – April 4, 2022
Amendment to University Act, section 23(1)(g) - Board of Governors for Information January 24, 2019