Faculty Senate


The mission of the Faculty Senate at North American University (NAU) is to recognize faculty interests, needs and responsibilities, and to advocate to the administration, trustees of the university, and community stakeholders. The Faculty Senate at NAU is committed to the principles of shared governance and promoting the continued improvement of work environment to ensure that academic freedom is encouraged and protected. The Faculty Senate acts as an advisory body to the NAU President and a liaison between faculty and administration.   

Faculty Senate Constitution 


Mindful of our centrality to the missions of this university and with the support of the President, the members of the faculty of the North American University have come together as a community of scholars in order to consider their responsibilities and needs, represent them to the administration and trustees of the university, and provide advice to the President.  The faculty members are committed to the principles of shared governance (inclusive and transparent decision-making, open communication among all members of the NAU community, accountability and mutual respect and trust) and recognize the interdependencies of all governance entities of the university as essential to achieving the defined mission, vision, values, goals, and objectives of the university.  For these purposes, we adopt this constitution of the faculty and its representative senate.

Faculty Senate Standing Rules 

  1. Monthly meetings of the North American University Faculty Senate are held on second Friday of every month, or as needed, from September through April, as scheduled by the President in consultation with the Senate. The scheduled meeting dates of the Senate for the current academic year shall be published with the September agenda. 
  2. Separate seating shall be provided for voting senators and for non-voting senators and visitors. 
  3. Election of the Senate officers shall occur on the agenda of the first meeting of the academic year.   
  4. All motions pending at the conclusion of the last regular Senate meeting shall be carried over to the next academic year. 

The Purpose of Faculty Senate 

In order to foster an environment at North American University which promotes continual improvement toward excellence, the Faculty Senate has as its basic purposes: 

  • advocating for faculty viewpoints on all issues in which faculty perceive themselves as stakeholders 
  • promoting communication between faculty and other groups on campus 
  • making recommendations on university policy and governance issues of concern to faculty 
  • soliciting faculty perceptions, suggestions, and recommendations 
  • seeking accurate data for use in advocating positions taken by faculty 
  • improving faculty salaries and working conditions 
  • facilitating budgetary education and assuring the opportunity for faculty participation in fiscal planning and decision making 
  • assuring appropriate faculty participation at all levels of university governance 

 The Faculty Senate of North American University is organized to encourage the cause of education, to encourage communication and understanding between the Board of Trustees, the Administration, and the Faculty, to achieve the most possible degree of professional relations, and to assure procedures to allow members to have a voice in all matters of Faculty interest. 

Rule 1: Name of the corporation  

This Corporation shall be called the North American University Faculty Senate, hereinafter referred to as the Senate. 

Rule # 2: Membership  

The Faculty Senate will be a representative body of the University Faculty. It will consist of the following voting members: one from each academic department, one librarian, three at-large members.  The President, the Provost, and one representative from Student Government are ex officio, non-voting members. No person shall concurrently hold more than one Senate seat. Administrators at the level of chair or above may not stand for election to the Senate.  

Membership of the Senate shall include the following:  

  1. The Faculty Senate shall consist of one member from each academic department, the library, and three at large representatives. The three at large seats will be filled by election of regular full-time faculty from across the University.  
  2. Representation to the Faculty Senate requires that a faculty member be a regular full-time faculty member. One member is to be, and elected by, faculty holding a primary academic appointment (on nine or twelve month contract) in the Business Administration Department. 
  • One member is to be, and elected by, faculty holding a primary academic appointment (on nine or twelve month contract) in the Computer Science Department. 
  • One member is to be, and elected by, faculty holding a primary academic appointment (on nine or twelve month contract) in the Education Department. 
  • One member is to be, and elected by, faculty holding a primary academic appointment (on nine or twelve month contract) in the GLS. 
  • The Librarian 
  1.  The at large seats will be elected with one opening each year for three years. 
  2. Each member is elected for three-year terms and can serve up to two consecutive terms. 

Rules # 3Organization 

Section 1  

The officers of the Senate shall be the President, Vice‐President, Secretary, and Parliamentarian.  

  1. Officers of the Senate shall be elected by a majority of the membership voting. Only members classified as full‐time Faculty members are eligible to be elected officers.
  2. Officers of the Senate shall hold office for three years, and officers may succeed themselves by election.
  3. Nominations for elected positions can be made by any member. Members nominating themselves for office must notify the President before the spring faculty meeting of the previous year. The elected officers of the Senate shall be elected by a simple majority at the scheduled meeting. If more than one person is running for office, a secret ballot will be held. The Secretary of the senate shall notify all university employees of the results. The term of office shall begin on the first day of the academic year.   
  4. The President shall preside at all regular and special meetings of the Senate. The President shall appoint all ad hoc committees of the Senate and shall be responsible for all communications sent out in the name of the Senate. The President shall be an ex officio member of all standing and ad hoc committees of the Senate.  
  5. The Vice‐President shall perform the duties of the President in the case of absence, removal, or resignation.  
  6. The Secretary shall record the proceedings of the full Senate meetings and after consultation with the President and distribute the minutes within one week of the meetings. 
  7. The President shall conduct meetings in accordance with Robert’s Rules of Order with advice of the Parliamentarian.  

Section 2  

The President has the authority to appoint any eligible faculty member to a vacancy to serve until the next election. Department representatives should be replaced immediately by department selection.  

Section 3 

No dues shall be assessed for purposes of membership in the Senate.  

Section 4  

Any Senate Faculty officer shall be removed from office upon a vote of no confidence. A vote of no confidence shall be initiated by a petition signed by at least one‐fourth of the full‐time Faculty members and presented to the Senate. The Senate shall determine a date for a vote of no confidence to be held between 15 and 30 days of receipt of said petition. Upon a vote of no confidence by two‐thirds of the full‐time Faculty members, the officer shall be immediately removed from office. The no‐confidence vote shall be conducted by secret ballot. 

Rule 4: Meetings Section  

 Section 1 

The full Senate shall meet at least once in the fall semester and once in the spring semester, or as needed if called into session by the President.  

Section 2 

A quorum of the Senate Faculty will be defined as more than 50% of the permanent members. 

Section 3  

Except as directed by this Constitution, all meetings of the Senate and the committees shall be conducted in a manner deemed appropriate, following Robert’s Rules of Order, by the presiding officer.  

Section 4  

An agenda for each meeting of the Senate shall be prepared by the President. The agenda shall be distributed to the Senate members before the meeting is to be held. Senate members have the right to have any item placed on the agenda.  

Section 5 

All meetings of all Senate committees shall be open to all employees of NAU, with prior permission of the President. 

Rules # 5: Constitution Revisions  

Section 1  

Any portion of this Constitution may be changed without having to add amendments. 

Section 2 

Proposed changes to this Constitution shall be approved by a majority vote of the full Senate.  

Section 3  

To be ratified, changes to this Constitution must be approved by a two‐thirds simple majority vote of the Senate. 


Members contact information