University of California Hastings College of the Law benefits from the involvement of three separate bodies of elected or appointed board members. Almost all of the members of these boards are our own alumni. They are among the most engaged of our graduates. Allow me to introduce the three boards at UC Hastings with which I am honored to work.
The Board of Directors is the governing authority of the institution. All institutions of higher education have a body of this nature. As the governing authority, the Board of Directors has fiduciary responsibility for UC Hastings and sets policy. It selects and evaluates the Chancellor & Dean, delegating to him or her the tasks of day-to-day management.
UC Hastings has a unique status. It is the original law department of the University of California. It continues to be affiliated with the UC system. UC Hastings does not come under the jurisdiction of the UC Board of Regents, which oversees the remainder of the system. Our Board is the equivalent of the UC Board of Regents, functioning independently of the Regents.
The Governor of California appoints members to the Board of Directors, the state Senate confirms them, and they serve as volunteers for a twelve-year term. In addition to the Chancellor & Dean, the Chief Financial Officer and the General Counsel also report to the Board; the General Counsel serves as Secretary to it. Both the Chief Financial Officer and General Counsel have a dual reporting line: to the Board of Directors and the Chancellor. The Board acts as a body, and, as is true of the best practice of governing boards in general, individual Directors are not typically regarded as autonomous. One Director is always a direct, lineal descendant of our founder, Serranus Clinton Hastings, the first Chief Justice of California, or a family designee. The Board of Directors holds quarterly meetings open to the public. Its standing committees hold additional meetings.
The UC Hastings Foundation (formerly the 1066 Foundation) is a separate 501(c)(3) non-profit entity created to lead fundraising for the College. Pursuant to its By-Laws, the Foundation provides an organization for individuals who are dedicated to advancing UC Hastings. It offers a means for soliciting, making, and receiving donations, financial and otherwise (such as time and expertise) to the school. Trustees are expected to make an annual contribution.
The Foundation has its own Board of Trustees, half of whom are selected by the Board of Directors. The current Chancellor & Dean serves as a voting Trustee as well.
The College and the Foundation have entered into an Operating Agreement that sets forth their relationship in greater detail. Pursuant to the Operating Agreement, the Chancellor & Dean works with the Foundation. Together they prepare short- and long-term fundraising goals. The Chancellor & Dean also consults with the Foundation on strategic planning. Fundraising by UC Hastings is undertaken in the name of the Foundation or is characterized as such.
The Assistant Dean for Institutional Advancement serves as the Executive Director of the Foundation. The Board of Trustees meets three times per year.
The UC Hastings Alumni Association has a Board of Governors with 50 members. The Board meets three times per year, usually on the same day as the Foundation Board. It coordinates outreach efforts for the College to alumni and students. The mission of the Alumni Association is to strengthen and nurture bonds between UC Hastings colleagues and the law school by providing outstanding opportunities for personal and professional growth. The Governors have an active partnership with ASUCH leadership to bring alumni mentors to student organizations and get together with students in small group outings. One example of this activity is “Six@Six:” an alumnus hosts six students at six p.m. for dinner.
Faculty and student input in decision-making is welcomed. The Chair of the Faculty Executive Committee, elected by the faculty on an annual basis, is invited to all meetings of the three Boards. The President of the Associated Students of UC Hastings (ASUCH) also is invited, and they participate in discussions. The Faculty Executive Committee and ASUCH representatives also meet regularly with the Chancellor & Dean. The Provost & Academic Dean appoints members to various faculty committees, and ASUCH selects representatives to most of the committees.
As Chancellor & Dean, I benefit from the advice and counsel of our board members, and the institution benefits from their support. Together, UC Hastings continues moving forward toward a great future.
Updated June 3, 2013.