An Appreciation: Teresa Miller
By Past-President Gwen Kay
In the before times (before SUNY System Administration), Teresa “Teri” Miller was on faculty at University of Buffalo’s law school. In addition to teaching, she was an advocate for those imprisoned. Her work for social justice and equity led her to administrative work, serving as vice president for diversity before every campus was required to have such a position.
Teri first came to SUNY System Administration to serve as former Chancellor Kristina Johnson’s chief of staff. In this position, she was able to leverage her commitment to diversity with Johnson’s. PRODiG – Promoting Recruitment, Opportunity, Diversity, Inclusion and Growth – was part of her portfolio. The goal of the plan was, and is, to increase representation of historically under-represented faculty at all of our campuses. From her work at University at Buffalo, Teri understood that cohorts and community helped recruitment and retention of faculty, so she pushed for cluster hires as a key part of PRODiG.
When the former SUNY Chief Diversity Officer, and head of the Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion announced his retirement, Teri was the logical person to step up to that role. She continued her work with PRODiG, making tweaks and improving the program each year. She organized SUNY’s Diversity conference, and had a day just for the PRODiG faculty, to continue to build community across our many campuses.
Teri helped campuses, and their chief diversity officers, respond to challenges and crises. Her commitment to engage, and willingness to listen first enabled her to offer support and guidance in a non-threatening, but very effective way. She reached out to faculty governance, both UFS and FCCC, as an active partner for task forces, and for on-the-ground help with campus incidents. In response to Chancellor Malatras and the Board of Trusees, she worked with many partners to create a Diversity Action Plan.
In Teri, UFS had an ally and partner for our goals around equity, around social justice, around inclusion, and around diversity. She was quick to respond to our queries, always willing to talk with us about ODEI initiatives and PRODiG progress updates. We have truly lost a friend and partner in DEI work with her loss.
"Teresa A. "Teri" Miller, 59, promoted diversity as UB provost, SUNY executive", Buffalo News, 1 September 2021
"Longtime UB faculty member, diversity advocate Teresa Miller dies at 59", University at Buffalo Campus News
Scholarship established to honor Teri Miller
On August 6, a tremendous loss was felt across the SUNY family with the passing of Teresa Miller, our friend, colleague, and leader of the Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion. We received many calls and emails from members of our SUNY family expressing an overwhelming wish to be able to honor Teri. It is with that feedback in mind that we want you to be aware of our support and efforts to fund The Professor Teresa A. Miller Memorial Scholarship Fund. We are working closely with the University at Buffalo School of Law, which established the scholarship fund.
The scholarship fund serves as a permanent memorial to Teri and all that she believed in and accomplished in her life—through scholarship and support for a student pursuing a law degree at UB’s School of Law. In order to build upon Teri’s legacy, preference will be given to talented students from underrepresented minority communities who, like Teri, are focused on civil rights and social justice legal-based pursuits. When fully funded, every year, the endowment will provide a merit–based, full tuition scholarship to a deserving student of color through all three years of their law school study.
Through this link, you can designate any amount, and for those who may wish to consider a NYS tax credit for donations, please contact Marianne Hassan at Marianne.Hassan@suny.edu or 518-320-1865 for this option through the SUNY Impact Foundation. For any donation, please indicate that you are giving as a part of the SUNY System Administration family’s donation in honor of Teresa Miller. With any questions about the scholarship unrelated to the SUNY Impact Foundation, please contact Kendra Cadogan at Kendra.Cadogan@suny.edu or 518-320-1137.
Thank you so much for your helping in honoring Teri. We will continue to follow up with you as further information is available regarding plans for a memorial service celebrating her life. In the meantime, we want to share this New York Times piece from earlier this month. With each story, we get another glimpse at a life well lived.
On August 18th, the Executive Committee in special action bestowed on Norm Goodman the Ram Chugh Senate Outstanding Service Award.
As described in the text of the resolution, this award to Norm is well deserved and long overdue, given his long service to the Senate: his advocacy for restoring the role of faculty determining the curriculum, following unilateral implementation of a general education framework by the Board of Trustees in the late 1990s; his long leadership of the Undergraduate Committee; his work in publishing the Bulletin; his stint as Vice President / Secretary; among other aspects of his service. Norm was also the inaugural recipient of the Carl P. Wiezalis University Faculty Senate Fellow Award.
Norm was already a long-established leader of the Senate when I joined nearly a decade ago as freshman Senator from Purchase College. I will always appreciate Norm welcoming me as a new member of the Senate; his tenacity in debating the issues that came before the body; and his ability to provide much needed perspective on the history of the Senate. I am glad that one of my first actions as President of the UFS was to shepherd this award for Norm through the Executive Committee.
Norm's contributions to Stony Brook (and to the UFS) were recognized in a virtual celebration (Norman Goodman: 56 years a Seawolf) organized by his colleagues in the University Senate and Sociology Department there. And in the story in Stony Brook News (University Senate, Department of Sociology Celebrating Norman Goodman’s 56 Years as a Seawolf). Although as Norm was quick to point out, that should be 57 years as a Seawolf.
Norm - you leave behind huge shoes to fill....
The following documents have been distributed to campus Presidents and CAOs, from the office of the Chancellor:
In addition to these documents, the Chancellor shared the following press release from the FDA on its final approval for the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine:
July 2021 SUNY Online Digest
This month's updates from SUNY Online:OSCQR rubric. If your campus has increased your offering of distance education classes long-term as a result of responding the pandemic, this is a topic that someone on your campus will probably be interested in. Showing how distance education courses on your campus meet this requirement for regular and substantive student/instructor interaction will need to be a part of any campus accreditation self-study going forward.
SUNY Online is also looking for exemplar online courses that can be used as models for observation by instructors who are new to online course design and teaching.
Here's the final word on COVID guidance from System to campuses, for this summer and upcoming Fall Semester:
Welcome, and Thanks
TL/DR: Thank you to Gwen Kay, Phil Glick, James McLean, Bruce Simon, Jennifer Redinger, and all of you for electing me UFS President for the next two years.
(Also, I meant the special election in June, not April.....)
(Transcript follows the "Read More" link)
News and reflections from the desk of UFS President