Faculty Handbook
July 1999

Appendix C Bylaws of UT Memphis Faculty Senate

Revised September 14, 1993

Amended February 11, 1997

Amended April 13, 1999

Article I Name

The name of this organization is the Faculty Senate of The University of Tennessee, Memphis (hereafter called Faculty Senate).

Article II Purpose

The Faculty Senate exists to represent the faculty as its sole elected body and to provide a systematic means for faculty participation in the affairs of The University of Tennessee.

Article III Members

Section 1. Membership Categories

The two categories of members are voting elected and nonvoting ex officio. Ex officio members are the President of The University of Tennessee; the Chancellor of the University of Tennessee, Memphis; the Chief Academic and Student Affairs Officers or the equivalent; Deans of all colleges or the equivalent; and presidents of the faculty organizations of the colleges or the equivalent.

Section 2. Eligibility for Membership

Faculty members with regular full-time, part-time, or emeritus appointments are eligible to be senators. The number of senators representing a department or the equivalent is based on the total number of faculty with primary appointments in the department, excluding those with volunteer, affiliated, and emeritus appointments. Each department or the equivalent has one elected senator for every fifteen full-time faculty members or fraction thereof. In each department or the equivalent, the total number of full-time faculty members equals the number of regular part-time faculty members multiplied by the mean percentage effort of part-time faculty in the relevant college or the equivalent plus the number of regular full-time faculty members.

Each college or the equivalent has at least eight elected senators. A college with fewer than eight departments or the equivalent elects the additional senators as members at large.

No more than one departmental chairperson may be elected from a college or the equivalent. Each college or the equivalent may elect one chairperson as an additional member at large. Administrative faculty members above the level of chairperson are not eligible for election to the Faculty Senate.

Faculty at the Graduate School of Medicine, Knoxville and the Chattanooga unit each have two senators elected as members-at-large.

Faculty of The University of Tennessee College of Social Work, Memphis Location have one senator elected as a member at large; this senator has all the rights and privileges of a voting member, except eligibility for election as an officer or a member of the Executive Committee.

Section 3. Election of Senators and Term of Office

Senators are elected at least one month prior to the annual business meeting of the Faculty Senate for a term of three years beginning one month after the regularly scheduled date of the annual business meeting of the Faculty Senate. A senator can serve no more than three consecutive terms. Each college must stagger elections so that no more than half its senators are elected annually.

Section 4. Penalties

A senator who is absent from three consecutive meetings without appointing a substitute may be removed from the Faculty Senate. For this purpose, a substitute is defined as a faculty member from that senator's electoral unit who actually attends the Faculty Senate meeting.

Section 5. Vacancies

In case of a vacancy in the Faculty Senate due to resignation, leave of absence, or other cause, the appropriate department or college faculty elects a successor to serve as senator for the unexpired term.

Section 6. Senators Outside Shelby County

Unless their presence is specifically requested, senators based outside Shelby County are not required to attend Faculty Senate meetings.

Article IV Officers

Section 1. Titles and Responsibilities

The four officers of the Faculty Senate are the President, President-Elect, immediate Past President, and Secretary-Treasurer. Their responsibilities are as follows:

  1. Presides at all meetings of the Faculty Senate.
  2. Is the chief spokesperson and representative for the Faculty Senate and faculty of the University of Tennessee, Memphis.
  3. Serves as an ex officio member of all committees of the Faculty Senate.
  4. Presents the annual report at the annual business meeting of the Faculty Senate.
  5. Oversees the budget and, together with the Secretary-Treasurer, may authorize expenditure.
  1. Acts as President in the absence of the President.
  2. Prepares the budget of the Faculty Senate for the succeeding year.
  3. Maintains current copies of the bylaws and procedures manual.
  4. Presides over meetings of the Executive Committee when the Executive.
  5. Committee deals with grievances.
Past President

Serves as an advisor to the President and the Executive Committee.

  1. Prepares and distributes meeting notices and agendas for Executive Committee and Faculty Senate meetings.
  2. Prepares, distributes, and maintains the minutes of all actions taken by the Faculty Senate and the Executive Committee.
  3. Prepares the annual report and other reports as appropriate.
  4. Maintains current lists of senators and committee members.
  5. Together with the President, may authorize expenditures.
  6. Assists the President-Elect in preparing the succeeding year's budget.
  7. Records attendance at Executive Committee and Faculty Senate meetings.
  8. Distributes updated copies of the bylaws or procedures manual to the senators whenever appropriate.

Section 2. Nomination, Election, and Term of Office

Candidates for President-Elect and Secretary-Treasurer are nominated by the Executive Committee of the Faculty Senate approximately one month prior to the annual business meeting of the Faculty Senate. The slate of candidates is submitted to all faculty senators at least ten days before the election. Nominations are also accepted from the floor prior to the election. Officers are elected by majority vote in a secret ballot at the annual business meeting of the Faculty Senate. Term of office for the four officers is for one year from the annual business meeting of the Faculty Senate.

Section 3. Restrictions on Holding Office

The President and President-Elect cannot be from the same college. For this purpose, faculty in the basic science departments and in the clinical medicine departments of the College of Medicine are regarded as being in separate colleges.

Section 4. Vacancies

If the office of President becomes vacant, the President-Elect fills this vacancy. If the office of President-Elect becomes vacant for this or other cause, the Executive Committee nominates replacement candidates, and an election is held at the next meeting of the Faculty Senate. If the office of Secretary-Treasurer becomes vacant, the Executive Committee appoints a replacement to serve as acting Secretary-Treasurer until confirmation as Secretary-Treasurer by the Faculty Senate. Only elected Senators or current officeholders can be elected or appointed to office.

Article V Meetings

Section 1. Regular Meetings and Annual Business Meeting

The Faculty Senate holds a business meeting for the election of officers and at least five regular meetings annually.

Section 2. Special Meetings

Special meetings of the Faculty Senate are called by the President or Executive Committee or by written request of ten senators. A minimum notice of three days must be given for a special meeting except in an emergency. The purpose of the meeting must be stated in the call, and the meeting must be limited to the stated purpose.

Section 3. Voting and Quorum

Voting at meetings of the Faculty Senate is by show of hands or voice unless the majority present request a vote by secret ballot. All elections are conducted by secret ballot. A quorum comprises twenty elected members of the Faculty Senate. If a senator cannot attend a meeting, the chosen substitute has all the rights, powers, and privileges of the absentee member, including voting rights.

Article VI Executive Committee

Section 1. Members

The Executive Committee is comprised of the elected officers of the Faculty Senate and at least one representative from each of the colleges or the equivalent. A college or the equivalent with more than fifteen departments elects an additional representative for each additional fifteen departments or fraction thereof. The Executive Committee elects as their chairperson either the immediate Past President or the President of the Faculty Senate. The President of The University of Tennessee and the Chancellor of the University of Tennessee, Memphis are ex officio members.

Section 2. Responsibilities

The Executive Committee nominates officers for the annual elections of the Faculty Senate, recommends and reviews assignments to standing committees with the consent of the Faculty Senate, and establishes special committees. It represents the Faculty Senate in meetings with the administration and other campus and off-campus groups and handles emergency and interim business between Faculty Senate meetings. Specific responsibilities of the Executive Committee are as follows:

  1. Faculty Senate bylaws, goals, committee assignments, and reports.
  2. Faculty Senate liaison to the administration.
  3. Interaction with the state legislature and lobbyists.
  4. Faculty Handbook of The University of Tennessee, Memphis.
  5. Faculty grievances. (Counsels, arbitrates, or intercedes on behalf of faculty, as described in the Faculty Handbook.)
  6. Assistance in recruiting and screening administrators for campus or system appointments. (Lends its counsel to the development of criteria and procedures for recruiting and screening candidates and assists in the selection of its faculty representatives on search committees.)

Section 3. Election and Term of Office

Each Executive Committee member representing a college or the equivalent is elected for a term of one year at a meeting of the faculty senators who represent the pertinent college or the equivalent. This election should be held during the month preceding the annual election of Faculty Senate officers.

Section 4. Vacancies

Vacancies on the Executive Committee occurring during the term of office are filled for the unexpired portion of the term by election at a meeting of the faculty senators who represent the pertinent college or the equivalent.

Article VII Committees

Section 1. Standing Committees

The Executive Committee of the Faculty Senate appoints the members of the standing committees for confirmation at a regularly scheduled meeting of the Faculty Senate. All members of the standing committees are elected faculty senators.

Section 2. Special Committees

The Executive Committee appoints special committees when the need arises.

Article VIII Parliamentary Authority

Section 1. Parliamentarian

A Parliamentarian is appointed annually by the President and approved by the Faculty Senate.

Section 2. Reference for Rules of Order

The rules contained in the current edition of Robert's Rules of Order Newly Revised govern the Faculty Senate in all cases to which they are applicable and in which they are not inconsistent with these bylaws and any special rules of order the Faculty Senate may adopt.

Article IX Amendment of Bylaws

These bylaws may be amended by a vote of two-thirds of the elected members of the Faculty Senate present at any regular or special meeting. Proposed amendments must be distributed in writing to the faculty senators at least ten days in advance of the meeting.

Enabling Resolution

The enabling resolution for the Faculty Senate of the University of Tennessee, Memphis was passed by the Board of Trustees of The University of Tennessee in September 1971. This enabling resolution represents the constituting document under which the Faculty Senate was established and currently operates.



Whereas the separate Faculties of The University of Tennessee Medical Units have exercised through faculty meetings and committees of the several colleges certain functions related to the development of the educational policies of the University;

Whereas these functions can be more effectively performed through a smaller, more formally organized group than the Faculty as a whole; and

Whereas a need exists for more effective channels through which the Administration may seek the counsel and judgment of the Faculty about matters of concern to the University;

It is therefore resolved that a Faculty Senate of The University of Tennessee Medical Units be organized, subject to the following stipulations:

  1. That the Senate operate in accordance with the bylaws which are hereby approved;
  2. That the Senate include authorized administrative officers of The University of Tennessee Medical Units and of its various academic divisions;
  3. That the Senate include elected representatives from each academic division, to be elected in such numbers and by such means as are set forth in the Bylaws.
  4. That the Senate may consider any subject pertaining to interests of the Medical Units and make recommendations to the Chancellor and the Board of Trustees in regard thereto. Decisions of the Senate with respect to matters within its jurisdiction shall constitute the binding action of the Medical Center faculties. Jurisdiction over academic policies shall reside in the faculties of the several schools and colleges; but, insofar as actions by these several faculties affect Medical Center policy as a whole, or schools or colleges other than the one in which they originate, they shall be brought before the Senate.
  5. That the Senate shall elect annually a Committee on Committees which shall make nominations for elective members of such educational committees as the bylaws may provide and such other committees as the Senate may authorize, and that following such nominations the Senate shall elect such committees;
  6. That the Senate shall have no management or administrative functions either in itself or through its committees, administrative matters being expressly reserved to the Chancellor of the Medical Center and the President of the University, as delegated by the Board of Trustees;
  7. That a copy of this resolution be appended to the Bylaws, and be considered a part of the constituting document of the Faculty Senate of The University of Tennessee Center for the Health Sciences.