November 2013

Notes from the November 26, 2013 Board Meeting


The Board of Trustees’ Annual, Workshop and Public Business Meetings were held Thursday, November 21, 2013, on the Lincroft campus.

Please join me in a warm welcome to our two new Trustees – William Dalton of Interlaken and Joseph DiBella of Freehold; they replace Peter Kapsales and Joan Raymond (whose terms have expired) as County appointees on the Board. Trustees Dalton and DiBella were sworn in by Counsel Hoffman and will serve until October 2017.

The Annual Meeting, required by state statute, is the Board’s “reorganization” meeting. The Board elected Brian Butch as Chair, and David Flaherty as Vice Chair, and approved the schedule of meetings and the revised Board Bylaws. In the Workshop session the Board discussed the restructured Board committees; at the December Board meeting they will formally adopt the committee memberships and appoint committeechairs.

Trustee Karcher gave an update on the Information Technology committee held October 21, 2013. The Report of the Finance Committee, led by Trustee Flaherty, included a Fall Semester Financial Forecast and several Financial Indicators pulled from that report. The board also reviewed the Academic Expense Ratios which had been presented in May. Most significantly, the board received a schedule of financial indicators, setting the stage for future fiscal monitoring.

I have mentioned before that I am a bona fide “data geek”; if you ever want to discuss these types of metrics – or any metrics – please feel free to contact me and we can explore further. I welcome your thoughts and ideas about how we can engage the entire college community in conversations regarding the data we collect and our accountability measures.

The Financial and WBJB Radio Audit were on the agenda for approval, but we pulled them earlier this week at the request of Vice President Maureen Lawrence. The Auditors have assured us that there are no material misstatements of findings or any issues at all with our Audits, but their team is still reviewing the support documentation and we wanted to provide ample time for them to do so. The Audit committee will meet in early December and these items will be on the December 19, 2013 Board agenda.

The Public Business Meeting moved next door to Navesink II, which was packed with students from Debbie Mura’s journalism class and the Women’s Soccer Team Region 19 Champions and their friends and supporters. During the public comment on the agenda portion of the meeting, Assistant Professor, Jack Ryan, recounted his history as soccer coach, athletic director and #1 Jersey Blues fan, and made a heartfelt expression of confidence in Coach Katie Miller. It was a wonderful tribute to our athletes and their coaches, and to Jack’s dedication to our students. 

Richard Pfeffer introduced Athletic Director Shawn Noel, who enthusiastically recounted the incredible women’s soccer season. Coach Miller, herself a Brookdale player in years past, and Assistant Coach Sara Shaughnessy, led the very talented students – Erin Kinneman, Kathleen Flannigan, Meghan Begley, Alexa Masino, Chelsea James, Brooke Tartis, Amanda Anastasia, Nicole Rodriguez, Caitlin Fisher, Simone McEnough, Raquel Rodriguez, Ali Maddock, Devon Carney, Caroline Duerr, Keara Homan, and Lauren Bowler, to a 17-1-1 season culminating in their incredible win on November 10th against Mohawk Valley Community College. Caroline Duerr was named Tournament MVP and Erin Kinneman was named Defensive MVP; our own Coach Katie Miller was awarded Coach of the Tournament. This is the first national title for the women’s soccer team and the 4th national title in sports for Brookdale. GO BLUES!! 

Onto the business of the Board: while Super Storm Sandy was over a year ago, many of our friends and neighbors are still affected. At this meeting the Board approved an application and an award for grants to benefit Sandy-related initiatives. It is incredibly gratifying to me to see our College continue to help our community recover and rebuild.

Executive Director of the Foundation Tim Zeiss spoke to the Board about the work of the Brookdale Foundation.

I had a wonderful time presenting the College’s Annual Report to the Board and the audience in an online flip-book format. Please take a few minutes and look through this informative ‘book’ highlighting some of the wonderful things our students, faculty and staff have accomplished over the past year. Director of Communications & Public Relations, Avis McMillon, summed it up nicely when she told the audience ‘that we know how awesome Brookdale is, how talented our faculty and staff are, and how much our students benefit, but to see it in this Annual Report is a great reminder to all of us of the great work we do to help students accomplish their educational goals.”

There were 31 Human Resource actions approved; they included hires, transfers, extensions and retirements of administrative and support staff, adjuncts and coaches. We bid a fond farewell to Mary Young in Mathematics; Ben Ross in Counseling, Georgio Chatzikyriakos in Facilities and, last but not least, Chief Bill Sandford, retiring after 40.5 years on the Brookdale Police Force; we wish you all the best of health and happiness.

During the public comment portion Jack Ryan spoke to the Frank Lawrence matter; student Jeremy Baratta asked for clarification on several items; and Karyn Arnold gave a shout out to some of the talented and committed members of the Administrative Association – Katie Miller, Tom Brennan, Nancy O’Shea, Mary Jo Burkhard, Marguerite Stocker, Dominic Latorraca, James McCarthy, Janice Thomas, Kelli Sanders, Joan Scocco, Bruce Marich, Katie Shea (twice!), Reve Anderko, and Carl Wiltsee. Karyn also asked the Board to “resolve the remaining legal issues” concerning Frank Lawrence, acknowledging the great work Frank is doing with the Sea Bright Rising community group. This issue is in the hands of the attorneys and we hope for a timely resolution.

I know much has happened over the last year–hard things. In this season of Thanksgiving, we need to remember not to be consumed by the anxieties of day-to-day life and take a moment to gather with those we love. I am thankful I will be with family, and I am also thankful to be part of the truly good work of the Brookdale Community College family.

Happy Thanksgiving to all!