November 26, 2015 Meeting Summary
Board Members present: B. Cunningham, Chair; A. Giardini, Chancellor; A. Petter, President; D. Azevedo; J. Earthy; J. Francis;
J. Hinchliffe; J. Kim; C. Lewis; E. Luongo; K. McDougall; D. Poole; P. Ruben; P. Sahota
Regrets: F. Robin
A. Finance and Administration
a. The Board noted for information the Year-to-Date Budget to Actual Variance Report as of September 30, 2015.
B. University Relations
a. The Board approved the following actions recommended by Senate:
- the Terms of Reference for the Chair in Technology Innovations for Youth Addiction Recovery and Mental Health; and,
- the Terms of Reference for the Tom Foord Professor of Practice in Entrepreneurship and Innovation.
b. Fundraising Progress Reports: The Board noted year-to-date progress reports as follows:
|Fundraising Progress Report
2015/2016 Year to Date
To September 30, 2015
To October 31, 2015
c. The Board approved the Terms of Reference for the:
- Dr. Rick Iverson Memorial Bursary;
- George Paris Annual Undergraduate Award in Scottish Studies;
- Amrik S. Pooni and Family Bursary;
- David M. Walton Bursary for Youth;
- Hargreaves Endowed Scholarship in Science and Applied Sciences, and,
- Research Award for Women in Applied Sciences.
d. The Board received for information the SFU Strategic Review 2015. The document will be forwarded to Senate for
information before being posted to the University’s website.
C. Governance and Nominating Committee
a. The Board approved that Martin Pochurko be recommended for appointment to the Board of Directors of the SFU
Community Corporation (SFUCC) effective November 19, 2015, replacing Pat Hibbitts who served on the Board of the
SFUCC as a senior officer of the University until her death on June 2, 2015.
b. The Board approved that Bev Park be recommended for re-appointment to the Board of Directors of the SFU
Community Corporation (SFUCC) as External Director for a term of one year from January 1, 2016 to December 31,
c. The Board received for information a minor housekeeping amendment to section 3.2 of Board Policy B10.14 – Evaluation
of the President’s Performance – to reflect the actual time of year when the Executive and Compensation Committee of
the Board (ECC) receives the President’s self-assessment of accomplishments for the previous academic year and
proposed goals, objectives and competencies for the upcoming academic year. To reflect actual practice, these two
documents will be provided to the ECC for its meeting in September, rather than on or before July 7 as was the case in
the past when the Board held a meeting in July.
d. The Board approved Denis Berubé, Mark McLaughlin and Jovica Miodragovic as Trustees of the Pension Plan for
Administrative/Union Staff for terms commencing December 1, 2015 and ending November 30, 2018.
e. The Board approved a new Risk Management Policy GP 42 effective immediately.
f. The Board approved a new University Energy Utilization Policy GP 43 effective immediately.
D. Responsible Investment Committee
a. The Board heard an oral presentation by two representatives of SFU350 in which they made their case for the
University’s divestment from the fossil fuel industry in its investment holdings.
b. The Board approved a 2% or $8 million increase to sustainable investment holdings within the endowment portfolio
and that this be directed to a Socially Responsible Investment fund. A total of 5% which represents approximately $20
million of the endowment portfolio will now be committed to sustainable investments.
c. The Board engaged in a discussion about the preparation of a responsible investment framework.
E. Human Resources Committee
a. The Board received for information the Mid-Year Update of the 2015-2016 Faculty Renewal Plan.
a. Board Chair B. Cunningham congratulated Chancellor Anne Giardini on being recognized with a Lifetime Achievement
Award at the 2015 Western Canada General Counsel Awards.
b. B. Cunningham welcomed Martin Pochurko, attending his first Board meeting since being appointed Vice-President,
Finance and Administration on October 15, 2015.
c. The Board Chair welcomed Mark Roman to the University and to the Board meeting. Mr. Roman became SFU’s new
Chief Information Officer on September 8, 2015.
d. B. Cunningham noted that Terry Waterhouse, Chief Safety Officer, will leave SFU on December 4, 2015 to take up an
appointment as the new Director, Public Safety Strategies with the City of Surrey.
e. B. Cunningham acknowledged the November 30, 2015 departure from SFU of Philip Steenkamp, Vice-President,
External Relations (VPER), who will be taking up an appointment at UBC as Vice-President, External Relations and
Communications. Though P. Steenkamp was not able to attend the Board meeting, the Chair formally extended the
Board’s thanks for the key role he played at SFU and the wise counsel and advice he provided to the Board during his
four years at SFU. B. Cunningham noted that a search is underway for a new VPER, and Associate Vice-President,
External Relations, Joanne Curry will assume the role in an acting capacity while retaining her current position as
Dean pro tem, Lifelong Learning.
f. President Petter commented on the successful October launch of SFU Innovates and opening of the new VentureLabs®
accelerator in the 24,000 square feet of space on the 11th and 12th floor of the Harbour Centre Tower.
g. The President also commented on the October Convocation ceremonies at which SFU hosted four exceptional honorary
degree recipients, including Bill Nye. He informed the Board that in honour of SFU’s 50th Anniversary, twenty Charter
alumni crossed the stage for a second time to receive a special parchment and pin. On October 21, 2015 a fibreglass
replica of Bill Reid’s Black Eagle canoe was installed in the Academic Quadrangle.
h. President Petter reported that both the President’s Annual SFU Surrey Gala Dinner on October 22, 2015 and the 8th
Annual Diwali Gala on November 3, 2015 were well attended, successful events.
i. A. Petter noted that the Faculty of Health Sciences is celebrating its 10th Anniversary in 2015 at a series of events
throughout the fall.
j. The President reported on the success SFU Public Square’s 2015 Community Summit “We The City,” during which 1440
volunteer hours from individuals across 34 SFU units was instrumental in welcoming almost 3,500 participants to 16
events in three communities. Over $300,000 was raised through sponsorship and ticket sales, and thousands more
in-kind contributions received. The Community Summit garnered 44 pieces of earned media, including 12
Vancouver Sun op-eds, 57,000 page views on the SFU website, almost 900,000 Facebook and Twitter impressions, and
the “WetheCity” hashtag trended nationally during the week.
k. President Petter reported on his recent trip to China and Hong Kong to build and strengthen SFU’s relationships with
partners, institutions and SFU alumni. In Beijing an MOU was signed with Hanhai Zihye Investment Management Group
(Hanhai) and partners to create the Hanhai-SFU China-Canada Commercialization & Acceleration Network in support of
innovation and commercialization as part of SFU Innovates, the University’s recently launched innovation and
entrepreneurship strategy. In Hangzhou, the Simon Fraser University-Zhejiang University Joint Centre on Big Data
(JCBD) was established in a Letter of Intent. JCBD will provide a forum for faculty and students to advance big data
science research in Canada and China and connect research with industry applications. An MOU in Global Humanities
was signed with Shanghai Jai Tong University and in Hong Kong SFU’s student exchange agreement with Hong Kong
Baptist University was renewed. In honour of SFU’s 50th Anniversary, receptions in Beijing, Hong Kong and Shanghai
were attended by over 300 alumni and friends, and a number of Advancement meetings held.
l. On the federal government relations side, the President informed the Board that he recently attended the bi-annual
Universities Canada (UC) membership meeting in Ottawa. Prime Minister Elect Justin Trudeau was present at the UC
reception. Provincially, President Petter reported that he recently made another presentation to the all-party Standing
Committee on Finance and Government Services following which the Committee recommitted to the MOU signed with
SFU and the Province on March 10, 2006 to double the size of SFU Surrey from 2,500 to 5,000 student FTEs by 2015.
m. President Petter reported that for the seventh time in the past eight years, SFU earned top spot amongst Canada’s
comprehensive universities in the 2016 MacLean’s Magazine rankings.
n. Joy Johnson, Vice-President, Research provided the Board with a report on recent research achievements and an update
regarding key activities in her Office. She highlighted the Hanhai-SFU China-Canada Commercialization & Acceleration
Network, the launch of the 50 Years of Research & Innovation at SFU website, and the initiative she will lead over the
coming year to recognize and strengthen community-engaged research activities at SFU.
o. 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 2015.
p. The Board reviewed the report from Jon Driver, Vice-President, Academic on a number of activities and developments in
the areas within his portfolio. It included information about preparations underway to seek institutional accreditation
by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU) in 2016 that will involve a site visit by members of
the NWCCU Evaluation Committee from April 6 to 8, 2016, information about recent and planned initiatives to support
undergraduate students, recent enrollment data, and a document titled Building Balance: SFU’s programs for graduate
students that formed part of a nomination package for an award offered by the Canadian Association for Graduate Studies.
A. Finance and Administration
a. The Board reviewed an update on the plan for development of a sustainable neighbourhood district heating system for
SFU Burnaby and UniverCity.
B. University Relations
a. The Board received fundraising progress reports for September and October 2015.
b. The Board reviewed the report from Philip Steenkamp, Vice-President, External Relations on key issues in Government
Relations and Communications & Marketing.
C. Responsible Investment
a. The Board engaged in a discussion about what “Responsible Investing” means.
b. The Board engaged in a discussion about SFU’s divestment from fossil fuel industry investment holdings and expressed a
desire to receive additional information from University management: 1) an evaluation of the divestment policies of The
University of British Columbia, McGill University and the University of Toronto; 2) how the University of Ottawa is
assessing the carbon footprint of the companies in which they are invested; and 3) receive qualitative and quantitative
information on educational institutions that have already contemplated divestment from the fossil fuel industry. In
addition SFU will establish Environmental, Social and Governance investment goals.
D. Human Resources
a. Faculty Appointments
The following academic appointments were approved and have been accepted:
- Dr. Isabelle Côté, reappointed as University Professor, Biological Sciences, 1 Sep 15 – 31 Aug 20
- Dr. Richard Lockhart, appointed as University Professor, Statistics and Actuarial Science, 1 Sep 15 – 31 Aug 20
- Dr. Eugene McCann, appointed as University Professor, Geography, 1 Sep 15 – 31 Aug 20
- Dr. David Kaufman, appointed as University Professor, Education, 1 Sep 15 – 31 Aug 20
- Dr. Judy Zaichkowsky, appointed as University Professor, Beedie School of Business, 1 Sep 15 – 31 Aug 20
- Dr. Andrew Wister, appointed as University Professor, Gerontology, 1 Sep 15 – 31 Aug 20
- Dr. Carole Gerson, reappointed as University Professor, English, 1 Sep 15 – 31 Aug 20
- Dr. Mehrdad Moallem, appointed as University Professor, Mechatronic Systems Engineering, 1 Sep 15 – 31 Aug 20
- Dr. Jiangchuan Liu, appointed as University Professor, Computing Science, 1 Sep 15 – 31 Aug 20
- Dr. Eleanor Stebner, reappointed to the J.S. Woodsworth Chair in Humanities, 1 May 15 – 30 Apr 20
- Dr. Jeffrey Reading, Professor w/tenure, Health Sciences, 1 Jan 16 and First Nations Health Authority Chair in Heart Health
and Wellness at St. Paul's Hospital, Health Sciences, 1 Jan 16 – 31 Dec 20
- Dr. Hwee Cheng Tan, Assistant Professor, Beedie School of Business, 1 Mar 16 – 31 Aug 20
b. The following administrative appointments were approved and have been accepted:
- Dr. Alexander Dawson, Director, International Studies, 1 Sep 16 – 31 Aug 19
- Dr. Nancy Hawkins, Chair, Molecular Biology & Biochemistry, 1 Jan 16 – 31 Dec18
The Board approved:
- A 20% modified appointment in the School of Resource and Environmental Management, 2 Nov 15 – 31 Dec 15
- A 50% modified appointment in Linguistics, effective 1 Sep 15
d. The Board approved mandatory amendments to the Pension Plan Text and a Funding Policy for the Pension Plan for
Academic Staff as required by changes to the legislation governing Pension Plans in British Columbia. These changes will
not affect pension benefits.
e. The Board approved a Funding Policy for the Pension Plan for Administrative/Union Staff as required by changes to the
legislation governing Pension Plans in British Columbia. The Funding Policy will not affect pension benefits.
f. The Board received for information a Governance Policy for each of the above named Pension Plans.
g. Other matters were discussed.
E. Audit, Risk and Compliance Committee Report
a. The Board received for information the external Audit Plan for 2015/16.
b. The Board received for information the Enterprise Risk Management Plan Annual Update.
c. The Board received for information an Interim Report on the Emergency Planning and Operational Continuity Project.
d. The Board heard a report from Audit, Risk and Compliance Committee Acting Chair J. Kim about other matters dealt
with by the Committee at its meeting of November 17, 2015.
a. The Board reviewed the report of Cathy Daminato, Vice-President, Advancement and Alumni Engagement on the
recent activities, developments and achievements in each of the areas within her portfolio.
b. The Board received the President’s Activities Report for September and October 2015.
c. President Petter informed the Board that the second annual Research Universities’ Council of BC (RUCBC) report
“Putting Degrees to Work” will be released early in December 2015.
d. Other matters were discussed.
a. The Board approved the establishment of a new Associate Vice-President, Human Resources position that will report to
the Vice-President, Finance and Administration.
b. The Board approved the appointment of Rummana Khan Hemani as Registrar (pro tem) and Executive Director
Enrollment Management until such time as the position is filled on a continuing basis.
c. Other matters were discussed.
The next Board of Governors meeting will be held at 8:00 a.m. on Thursday, January 28, 2016 in Strategy Room 320, The Morris J. Wosk Centre for Dialogue, 580 West Hastings Street, SFU Vancouver.