Guiding Principles:

The linkage between the Board and Committees

(Approved by the Board 21 October 2010)

As stated in the Board Charter, the Board of Governors role is to approve and support the values, vision, mission, and strategic goals of the University and to monitor progress against the approved goals.

The relationship of the Board to the university is mediated by the president.  The Board and by extension its committees will focus on governance, oversight and policy.  The president and her/his executive team will focus on management, operations and procedures.  The first officer of any committee is the President with other members of the executive team supplying subject matter expertise.  No member of the executive team other than the president formally reports to the Committee or the Board.


The Committees of the Board have a mandate to support and advance the Board’s objectives. The mission, vision, values and strategic goals of the University will form a touchstone for every Committee meeting.

The management of the Committee is in effect a partnership between the President, the Chair of the Committee and the appropriate Senior Manager, who will act as the subject matter expert to the Committee. Together, they determine the work of the Committee including setting the Committee agendas. Matters brought forward to the Committee may emerge from the executive team or from the discussions of the Board.

In bringing forward proposals to the Board or its committees the President asks these questions:

  • Does it involve governance, oversight or policy matters?
  • Does it advance the vision, mission, and strategic goals of the university?
  • Is the proposal justified?

Committees have responsibilities to review, monitor and support progress being made against the strategic goals rather than monitoring the work of individuals or portfolios.

Each committee must have a purpose and good answers for the following questions:

  • Why are we having this meeting?
  • What outcomes are desired?
  • How do these outcomes support and advance the University’s values, vision, mission, and strategic objectives?
  • Is the Committee satisfying its legal obligations?

A Committee’s work is guided by its Terms of Reference.

A Committee organizes its work through an annual work plan that is established by the Committee in discussion with the President and the appropriate senior manager, and approved by the Board.