Office of the Chancellor

2014-15 Annual Report

Section 1

2014-15 Annual Report

Aug. 6, 2015


  • Chancellor Howard Gillman
  • Associate Chancellor Ramona Agrela


  • Ken Janda, Dean, School of Physical Sciences, CACS Faculty Co-Chair, February 2014 – present
  • Natalie Schonfeld, Executive Director, Academic Senate; CACSS Staff Co-Chair, August 2012 – present

2014-15 Annual Report

University of California, Irvine staff members are an integral part of the institution and make vital contributions to the success of our university. They ensure that our campus runs efficiently and provide invaluable support to our educational and research missions. In order to preserve and strengthen these contributions, UC Irvine established the Chancellor’s Advisory Committee on the Status of Staff (CACSS) in 2001; in 2014, the committee was renamed the Chancellor’s Advisory Committee on Staff (CACS).

CACS is charged with advocating for staff by facilitating communication between staff and the chancellor, with the larger goal of promoting career development, mitigating problems and creating a positive work environment. Members are carefully selected so that they bring the skills, knowledge, and experience necessary to the effectiveness of this active working group. CACS co-chairs communicate regularly with the chancellor, which includes providing the chancellor with an annual written report detailing its activities and efforts in response to the committee’s charge.

Following our meeting with Chancellor Gillman soon after his appointment, CACS began collecting data about staff and documenting institutional changes as part of an effort to develop a “staff scorecard” detailing who staff are, identifying key areas of pride and concern, and developing recommendations for initiatives that support our strengths and address those areas in need of attention.

As a result of transitions in the campus leadership and the committee’s desire for greater direction and clarity about its charge, CACS did not meet from November 2014 to May 2015.

In late April 2015, Associate Chancellor Ramona Agrela met with the CACS co-chairs to discuss and reinvigorate the role and charge for CACS. Since that time, CACS has met twice to discuss and act on its new charge: to serve as an advisory committee on Human Resources matters and practices with the goals of improving engagement, contributing to the creation of a performance management culture, and strengthening the alignment of and connections among the medical school, UCI Medical Center, and the general campus.

I. Membership and Structure

      The CACS membership from July 2014 through June 2015 included Dahlia Aguirre (Ex-Officio, Staff Assembly), Sophia An, Gwen Kuhns Black (Ex-Officio, OEOD), Sharon Block, Louise Borda, John Daly (Ex-Officio, Human Resources), Eric Esajian, Gerson Gomez, Ryan Hoadwonic (Ex-Officio, Institutional Research), John Mouledoux (Ex-Officio, Strategic Communications), David Naimie, Greg Rothberg, Benedicte Shipley, Susi Takeuchi (Ex-Officio, UCIMC), Jason Valdry, Desiree von Haag (Ex-Officio, Chancellor’s Office), and Ashley Vikander.

Until November 2014, CACS members were organized into three workgroups to address issues related to diversity, employee development, and CACS outreach and communication. In light of the committee's new charge, this organizational structure will need to be evaluated.

II. Activities and Accomplishments

The following is a summary of the activities sponsored by CACS since the last annual report was submitted in July 2014:

    • CACS’ Employee Development workgroup, in collaboration with Strategic Communications, produced five videos that highlight individual career stories and the diversity of UCI’s staff. The videos may be viewed on the CACS website: or on UCI’s YouTube playlist for UCI Staff videos.
    • CACS collected 10 years’ worth of data detailing the changes in student, employee, and patient counts. As detailed in the tables at the end of this report (PDF), from 2004 to 2013, the student population (both undergrad and graduate) increased by 19%, the faculty population by 10%, the general campus staff by 6%, the UCIMC staff by 36%, and the aggregate patient counts have remained nearly the same.1 During this same time period, UCI has experienced significant changes in campus leadership, processes, policies, student population, academic programs, and physical plant. Some examples of these include the centralization of our financial systems, changes to benefits and retirement, the growth in international and out-of-state students, the opening of the law school, and the construction of new buildings including UC Irvine Douglas Hospital. The limited growth of campus staff, in light of the growth both of other populations and the campus in general during that time period, raises significant concerns for CACS.

      1 While the aggregate patient counts have not increased, the number of ER visits from 2005 to 2014 increased by 29%.

III. Goals and Recommendations for Future Work

As we look to the future of CACS, we seek to better understand the needs, experiences and expectations of staff and to effectively communicate these with the associate chancellor and chancellor. We look forward to continuing to contribute and give voice to the staff experience as we grow into our new role and charge.

With this in mind, our goals for the upcoming year are as follows:

    • Communicate the role and charge of CACS to the campus.
    • Advocate for the inclusion of staff and staff issues in the strategic planning process and plan.
    • Make recommendations to the chancellor and associate chancellor about strategies to better meet staff needs and expectations.
    • Work with the associate chancellor to clarify how CACS and Staff Assembly can contribute in unique and complementary ways to the staff experience.

Based on our activities during the 2014-15 year, our primary recommendation is as follows:

    • Recognize the work of staff and their significant contributions to the campus. The data we collected and reviewed suggests that the growth of the staff has not been commensurate to the growth of the campus. Having this recognized by both senior administration and unit leaders would be well-received by staff and could positively contribute to the staff morale and engagement.

We thank you for reviewing this report and look forward to discussing it with you.