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University Counsel

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Related Procedures
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This procedure sets forth the requirements and process for nominating a person for designation as a SUNY Associate. The State University of New York (University) Board of Trustees approved the creation of the title of SUNY Associate to recognize the indispensable voluntary (and uncompensated) labor on behalf of the University by persons who provide extensive services, which support the official duties of the campus presidents and the chancellor.

The requirements include: limitation of the authority to nominate, which is placed solely in the hands of the campus presidents and the chancellor; a statement of specific justification to accompany the nomination, including duties to be assigned by the campus president or chancellor and performed by the nominee; a description of the benefits to the campus or the University’s system administration from those services; and approval by the chancellor (or by the Board of Trustees for a chancellor’s nominee).


General Considerations

I.              Source

All nominations for SUNY Associate to the president must originate in the office of the president on each campus. A nomination for SUNY Associate to the chancellor must originate in the chancellor's office.

Nominations may not be submitted by the nominee or by other persons associated with a campus or the University’s system administration.

II.            Timing

For any person (spouse, family member, or community member) involved for the first time in volunteering significant services for the office of president/chancellor, it is recommended that a nomination as SUNY Associate be deferred at least two months. This delay is intended to provide time and opportunity for potential nominees to determine if they desire to be SUNY Associates and, if so, how they expect typically to serve in this role. The documentation expected in a letter of nomination will also be enabled by this delay.


For a person who has performed such services voluntarily in a similar capacity at another campus and who both knows and can document the pattern of service intended, a two month deferment may not be needed.

III.           Process

A descriptive letter of specific justification signed by the campus president must accompany each nomination for SUNY Associate to the president. The letter may be shared with members of the campus community or the campus council at the discretion of the president.

A similar letter signed by the chancellor must accompany a nomination for SUNY Associate to the chancellor and may be shared with the Trustees, if desired.

When completed, the letter of nomination from each president should be forwarded to the chancellor for appropriate action; a letter of nomination from the chancellor should likewise be forwarded for action to the chair of the Board of Trustees.

SUNY Associate Nomination Form (Form A) that may be used for nomination letters is provided below.

IV.         Supporting Documentation

Documentation will vary greatly as a result of the support services needed by each president and the services each nominee wishes to volunteer in relation to this need. Some or all of the following four elements may be incorporated in a letter of documentation.

A.            Typical Services

      There are standard, recurrent services customarily performed insupport of the office of president/chancellor. Services typically and frequently performed to assist the office of president/chancellor may include:

1.       Organization, coordination, and hosting of campus functions:

a.       Such functions are various but may include: welcomes to new faculty and students; convocations of alumni or parents; testimonial events for distinguished students, faculty, outside lecturers or campus contributors; meetings of faculty officers, faculty organizations, student committees, staff associations, and faculty/staff spouse groups; and functions that bring together the campus and community.

b.       Organization for these functions may include specification of a guest list; preparing invitations and receiving responses; ordering and/or preparing food; ordering and/or arranging flowers; errand running to secure the materials, such as food, linen, and flowers required for events; supervising or performing all prior cleaning and set up, such as silver polishing, table setting, and determination of table seating; hiring, directing, or supervising staff at the event; and supervising or performing all post event clean up.

2.       Assistance in campus fund raising

3.       Assistance in alumni relations and alumni activities

4.       Assistance in general public relations initiatives

5.       Supervision related to the official residence and its grounds

B.            Unique Services

There are unique services for the office of president/chancellor, which are more specific to individual campuses. In general, these occur in response to particular campus needs, occur thus less frequently than typical services, but often have critical campus significance. Unique services may include such activities as serving as the president's representative on a campus committee; coordinating or assisting in a major campus project, such as establishment of a permanent arts or hospital volunteer support group; hosting an official campus guest which may involve pick up, touring, and accommodating special requests in the community or campus; hosting a conference; giving a speech or testimonial in the president's stead; and serving as a campus representative at national meetings.

C.            Time Volunteered

         These are the hours typically devoted per week or per month in volunteering the services described above. If the nomination is to specify time spent, this estimation of time should relate to services provided and not to event attendance. Event attendance may be separately recorded if desired.

D.            Impact

         This is the effect on the campus of the services performed.  Descriptions of how a campus is impacted by the services of a particular spouse will vary so greatly by individual circumstances that generic examples are not readily identifiable. One illustration, however, is providing preparations for biweekly meetings of faculty from various disciplines at the president's official residence that result in increased interdepartmental communication and a refocusing of joint undergraduate programs. Another example is organizing a dinner to thank key contributors that results in renewed gifts to the campus, some at a higher level.


Form A - SUNY Associate Nomination Form

Related Procedures

There are no related procedures relevant to this procedure.

Other Related Information

SUNY Associate, Designation of


State University of New York Board of Trustees Resolution 91-195, adopted on October 16, 1991


Memorandum to presidents from the office of the chancellor dated January 27, 2004 regarding SUNY Associates.

Memorandum to presidents from the office of the senior vice chancellor for administrative affairs, 91-6, dated December 31, 1991 regarding the policy and guidelines for the designation of SUNY Associates.

The State University of New York Board of Trustees Resolution, 91-195, adopted on October 16, 1991.


There are no appendicies relevant to this procedure.