ANR Employees
University of California
ANR Employees

Humiston introduces new Staff Assembly and Principles of Community

ANR employees at Kearney Agricultural Research and Extension Center participate in the town hall by teleconference.
UC ANR now has its own Staff Assembly and Principles of Community, announced UC ANR vice president Glenda Humiston at a town hall in the ANR Building in Davis on May 20, which was broadcast at ANR facilities and offices throughout the state. The two new initiatives are direct results of the Work Environment Assessment (systemwide campus climate study) conducted in 2012 and UC ANR's Work Environment Assessment workshops in 2015.

“I'm especially pleased to be able to bring this announcement to you,” Humiston said. “Principles of Community and staff assembly are milestones in the history of the Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources.”

Late last year, Humiston appointed a committee to draft the Principles of Community and she appointed a committee to develop the process for forming the statewide ANR Staff Assembly.

“I want to offer my sincere thanks to the members of these committees for their commitment and their work,” Humiston said.

Both committees completed draft documents, which are now on the web for review and input. Staff Assembly bylaws are on the Staff Assembly website. The Principles of Community are on UC ANR's main website. Forms for submitting questions and comments are available for both documents.

Matt Baur, chair of the Staff Assembly committee and associate director of the Western Region IPM Center, introduced the new Staff Assembly framework at the town hall meeting. He said all staff in ANR are part of the Staff Assembly, including all appointment types and county employees.

“Everyone needs to participate in the assembly for it to function properly,” Baur said. “We want to offer opinions and recommendations to leadership on policies, processes and programs, and to channel information from leadership back to the staff. It's a two-way information flow.”

Part of the assembly's mission will be offering learning opportunities, career training and professional development to ANR staff to further career advancement. Humiston said the Staff Assembly joins Academic Assembly as equally important pieces of shared governance for UC ANR.

Two members of the Staff Assembly committee will represent ANR at the statewide meeting in June of the Council of UC Staff Assemblies. In the fall, winter and spring, ANR Staff Assembly plans to hold regional meetings around the state to engage staff in the organization.

The Principles of Community were outlined at the Town Hall by committee chair Terri White, executive assistant for Communication Services and Information Technology. She said the committee started its work with 31 pages of comments from the environmental assessment workshops. They looked for commonalities to identify workshop participants' suggestions for creating a welcoming and inclusive workplace.

“With our group, we determined that fairness, trust, respect, physical and emotional safety and security were important. That was what we felt our target was,” White said. “We vetted our early draft with 12 academics and staff and introduced it to leadership in March. Now we're looking to all of you for input.”

The principles outlined in the document are:

  • Ensure open communication
  • Work together to achieve common goals and mutual understandings
  • Value the contribution and worth of all members
  • Appreciate and celebrate differences and diversity
  • Foster a sense of belonging and emotional safety
  • Practice mutual respect
  • Demonstrate ethics and integrity
  • Invest in all members
  • Recognize that all members are important

In closing the town hall session, Humiston noted that the larger vision of the Division is outlined in the Strategic Vision 2025 and that the existing Strategic Initiatives will continue for at least another five years.

“As we're working together, that's our vision of where we are and where we are going as we implement the Principals of Community and utilize the Staff Assembly to get us there,” Humiston said.

View the 27-minute video of the town hall below.

Posted on Tuesday, May 24, 2016 at 12:21 PM
  • Author: Jeannette Warnert

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