Meeting Summaries

Summary of Seattle University Board of Trustees Actions June 2 and 3, 2022

June 22, 2022

New Trustees: The Board welcomed new trustees Ryan Sawyer, ’94, and Eva Zhao. Mr. Sawyer graduated summa cum laude from SU in 1994 He received a Rhodes scholarship to attend Oxford University, where he earned an MSt with Distinction in Research Methods in English. Mr. Sawyer served on the Seattle U Board of Regents and currently runs an investment advisory firm. Dr. Eva Zhao was a tenured full professor at Beijing University of Posts and Telecommunications. She relocated to the U.S. in 2015. Dr. Zhao has her Ph.D. in Management Science. Her research focus includes financial engineering, investment management, and risk and decision-making analysis.

Board Acknowledgments: The Board recognized outgoing Trustees Maureen Benoliel, Steve Trainer, and Nicole Piasecki for their service and contributions to the Board of Trustees and Seattle U, as well as EVP Tim Leary for his service and upcoming retirement in June.

DEI Committee: The Trustees, Cabinet, and Deans participated in an interactive development session on Inclusive Excellence facilitated by SU alumna, Dr. Robin DiAngelo, Ph.D., educator, equity advisory, and bestselling author of White Fragility: Why It’s So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism (2018) and Nice Racism: How Progressive White People Perpetuate Racial Harm (2021).

Finance Committee:  The Board heard the FY22 financial forecast, approved the preliminary FY23 Budget, and reviewed the preliminary 5-year financial plan.

Trusteeship Committee: The Board elected Fr. Paul Joseph Fitzgerald, S.J. to the Board of Trustees. Fr. Fitzgerald is the President of the University of San Francisco. The Board also renewed the appointments of Trustees Jeanne Berwick, Maureen Brotherton, Valerie Gorder, Drew Herdener, Jason Oliver, and Chuck Porter.

Academic Affairs Committee: The Board approved amendments to the Faculty Handbook as proposed and approved by the Faculty Handbook Revision Committee and Academic Assembly and recommended by the Provost and President.

Investment Committee: The Board approved an Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) Addendum to the Investment Policy Statement. The ESG Addendum was developed by the Socially Responsible Investment (SRI) Advisory Working Group and recommended by the Board’s Investment Committee.

Audit Committee: The Board approved an Enterprise Risk Management (ERM) Process intended to enhance the University’s ability to identify, understand, and manage institutional risks.

Reigniting Our Strategic Directions: The Board heard an update on the implementation of the Strategic Directions, including the progress of working groups and initiatives.

Statement on Diversity: The Board adopted an update to its 2008 Statement on Diversity to include the ways in which diversity, equity, and inclusion are essential to fulfilling the University’s mission, vision, and values as a Jesuit Catholic institution of higher education.

Redhawk Experience: The Board invited three student-athletes to reflect on the Redhawk Experience, which challenges student-athletes to purposefully engage, reflect, serve, and prepare.

The next meeting of the Board is on September 15, 2022.