New Trustees take part in initial Board meeting

January 20, 2022

Newly elected Trustees Marla Sexson, Bob McGregor, and Brett Bazil took part in their first Board Meetings at Cowley College Tuesday night in the Patrick J. McAtee Dining Center.

During Tuesday’s meeting, the Trustees re-elected Board Chair Gary Wilson and Vice Chairman Glennis Zimmerman. Other officers elected for the upcoming year: Kansas Association of Community College Trustees voting delegate, Brett Bazil; an alternate delegate to the Kansas Association of Community College Trustees, vacant; Association of Community College Trustees voting delegate, Bob McGregor; an alternate delegate to the Association of Community College Trustees, vacant; a trustee representative for professional negotiations, Glennis Zimmerman; a trustee representative designated to open bids received for College purchases, Gary Wilson; a trustee representative to the Cowley College Foundation, Glennis Zimmerman; a trustee representative to the Tiger Booster Club, Marla Sexson; three trustees to serve on the Finance sub-committee Gary Wilson, Glennis Zimmerman, Dr. Steve Abrams; three trustees to serve on the Academic sub-committee, Bob McGregor, Marla Sexson, and Dr. Steve Abrams; three trustees to serve on the Board policy sub-committee, Gary Wilson, Chris Swan, and Brett Bazil.

Also, during Tuesday’s meeting, the Board appointed Tiffany Vollmer to continue to serve as Clerk of the Board, appointed Dr. Rittle to continue as temporary Treasurer of the Board, and appointed David W. Andreas to continue as Attorney for the Board at a monthly retainer fee of $400.

In other matters:

1. Cowley College president Dr. Dennis C. Rittle provided a college update. Dr. Rittle informed the Board of the success Cowley students-athletes had during the fall semester led by the women’s basketball team achieving a 3.53 grade point average. Dr. Rittle also praised the work done by the Cowley admissions team and mentioned each individual by name. He also mentioned the strong housing numbers registered in the Fall and the agriculture storage shed is now up at the Sumner Campus in Wellington. Lastly, spring semester classes and Golden Tigers enrollment started Tuesday.
2. Saw Dr. Rittle present a gift to December Student of the Month Shelby Fuqua of Winfield, KS. “Thanks for all of the opportunities Cowley has given me,” Fuqua said. “It is because of Cowley College that I have found my calling in life.”
3. Dr. Steve Abrams provided the Board with a Trustee Finance Subcommittee update. The Finance Subcommittee approved the Government Affairs Liaison three-year contract with Jessica Lucas of J Squared Communications at a cost of $24,000 annually.
4. Board Chair Gary  Wilson provided the Board with a Trustee Policy Subcommittee update.
5. Approved the Consent Agenda:

  1. Board Minutes of the December 13 meeting.
  2. Financial Report
  3. Bills and Claims. Approved fiscal officers of the College to execute payment of all bills and claims as presented.
  4. Administrative Reports.
  5. The Board held first readings on the following policies: (125.00) Tobacco Use on Campus, and (167.00) Tuition Reimbursement.
  6. The Board approved the following policies: (127.00) Drug-Free Workplace, (165.00) Sick Leave Full-Time Non-Faculty Employees, (166.00) Vacation Full-Time Non-Faculty Employees, and (205.00) Curriculum Development.
  7. The Board approved the retirement of Patty Mugler as assistant to the athletic director, effective April 1. “I have immensely enjoyed my 25 plus years here at Cowley College and appreciate all the great people that I have had the opportunity to work with and some that I am fortunate enough to call my friends,” Mugler said. “I am looking forward to retirement but will miss the great group of people that I have worked for and with.”
  8. Approved the employment of Chase Poovey as public safety officer, effective January 19; approved the hiring of Steve Anderson as custodian, effective January 31.

6. Kristi Shaw, executive director of enrollment management, informed the Board what the College is doing in terms of growing enrollment and let the Trustees know that enrollment is up from this date a year ago.
7. Holly Harper, vice president of finance and administration, provided the Board with a Higher Education Emergency Relief Funds (HEERF) update.
8. Dr. Michelle Schoon, vice president of academic affairs, informed the Board of the successful professional development day event held on December 14. She also provided information on the spring semester and upcoming Golden Tiger events.
9. Paul Erdmann, vice president of information technology, provided an update on projects the information technology staff has worked on over the past month.
10. Kristi Shaw, executive director of enrollment management, provided an enrollment update. Shaw also informed the Board of the recruiting events the admissions representatives have assisted with over the past month and have lined up in the coming months.
11. Debbie Phelps, executive director of institutional effectiveness (IE), informed the Board that the IE Office is currently compiling information for the annual, federal winter data collections. The IPEDS Winter Collection is due for college keyholders on February 9th.
12. Pam Smith filled in for Julie Rhoads, faculty liaison, to provide updates from several Cowley instructors.
13. Jason O’Toole, director of athletics, informed the Board that the turf projects for baseball and softball have been largely completed.
14. Approved the deferred maintenance loan using Winfield Plumbing and Heating at a cost of $370,753 using HEERF funds. 
15. Approved the revisions to the Board book.
16. The meeting adjourned at 7:20 p.m.


Rama Peroo

Director of Institutional Communication & Public Relations
Cowley College
125 South 2nd Street
Arkansas City, KS 67005