April 25, 2014

April 2014 APAC News Vol. 7, No. 4

Petition: Supplemental Retirement Benefits

We will update this page regularly with updates on the petition.
Check back often for news!

April 21, 2014 at 10 a.m.: Petition is launched
April 30 at 9 a.m.: Over 1,100 Signatures!

The Petition is Available Here: https://uofi.uic.edu/fb/sec/3250911
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WE ASK you to consider signing our petition in support of University-subsidized supplemental retirement benefits. 

RECENT PENSION legislation, Public Act 98-599, has significantly diminished the retirement benefits for University of Illinois employees. At the January 2014 Board of Trustees meeting, University leaders decided to explore supplemental retirement benefit programs that could help minimize the impact for faculty and staff. The plan being considered will not fully offset the benefits we have lost, but they represent the University’s first and best efforts at repairing the damage.

IF LEGISLATORS do not support our current efforts, we may not be able to secure the supplemental retirement benefits under consideration. It would also set a precedent, making any subsequent effort by the University to secure supplemental retirement benefits that much more difficult.

WE WANT Illinois State legislators to support University efforts to secure supplemental retirement benefits, and we are providing you an opportunity to voice your support for the supplemental retirement benefits by signing our petition. 

YOUR PARTICIPATION in this petition is voluntary. This petition is open to all employees and annuitants who have paid into the State Universities Retirement System (SURS) including Academic Professionals, Faculty, and Civil Servants; as well as their colleagues, family, friends and supporters. If you wish to review and / or sign the petition, please click the link below:



IT SHOULD take about ten minutes or less to review and / or sign the petition. While at work, you may review and / or sign the petition before work, after work, or during any normally scheduled break (such as lunch) using your work computer.

PLEASE NOTE: University and Campus Human Resources, the Office of the Chancellor, and the Ethics Office have all been made aware of the petition. Advocating for support of the University of Illinois and employees is not prohibited by university or campus policies or the State Officials and Employees Ethics Act. Employees should exercise care to ensure these activities do not negatively impact fulfillment of employment responsibilities.

This petition is being coordinated by UIC’s Academic Professional Advisory Committee (APAC).

Stephanie Whitaker to Represent APs in Chancellor’s Search

Stephanie Whitaker will represent APs in the search for a new Chancellor.
STEPHANIE WHITAKER, MPA, Research Program Coordinator in the Department of Political Science, has been named the Academic Professional representative on the Chancellor’s Search Advisory Committee. The committee will choose a successor to Chancellor Paula Allen-Meares, who will step down next year.

“I AM really honored to be selected to serve in this capacity to represent the Academic Professional community on the Chancellor’s Search Committee,” Whitaker said. “Being a 20-plus year AP employee, I believe I share many of the concerns and issues that affect this constituency.  

“DURING MY years of service with the Chancellor’s Committee on the Status of Blacks (CCSB), our AP sub-committee has had strong ties and membership with the Academic Professional Advisory Committee (APAC),” Whitaker continued. “As this search committee works through the process to identify new campus leadership, I hope to be able to impress upon the candidates the voice of Academic Professionals and the important service we provide for the UIC Campus.”

WHITAKER HAS worked for the Department of Political Science the past 12 of her nearly 21 years on campus. Her responsibilities within the department have included overseeing the ongoing procedures, priorities, and organizational structure for faculty research, grants, and programs; managing the day-to-day undergraduate student programs and processes; creating and implementing department development initiatives; and procurement and financial transaction management.

SHE RECEIVED her undergraduate degree in Political Science and her Master in Public Administration from UIC.

WHITAKER FORMERLY was Special Assistant to the Associate Chancellor for Development at UIC, and in addition to her current role, has served the campus community on the CCSB, which she previously Co-chaired; the Provost’s Diversity Advisory Council (DAC); the Liberal Arts and Sciences (LAS) Diversity Committee; the UIC Black Alumni Advisory Council (BAAC); and the Illinois Committee on Black Concerns in Higher Education (ICBCHE). She has received the UIC Award of Merit, the Chancellor’s Academic Professional Excellence Award, and the LGBTQ Ally Award.

APAC Meetings Scheduled

ALL APs are invited to the monthly APAC meeting at 12:30 p.m. on the second Wednesday of the month. Meetings are held either in Room 5175 of the College of Medicine Research Building, 909 S. Wolcott, or Room 2750 of University Hall on the East Campus. Next meeting is May 14 in Room 2750 of UH. For information, call (312) 996-0306.


Editor’s Note: “The Continuing Crisis” is a section of APAC News which links to news pertinent to the State budget crisis and other financial matters as they affect the University and Academic Professionals. These news outlets are not affiliated with or endorsed by APAC.
ECONOMICS EXPERT says most cities and states can restore public pensions to healthy funding levels without big tax hikes or cutting benefits. See Fox Business, April 9, 2014: http://video.foxbusiness.com/v/3446132612001/baker-absolutely-no-pension-crisis/#sp=show-clips.
UNIVERSITY CONSDERING pension supplement. See News-Gazette, April 11, 2014: http://www.news-gazette.com/news/local/2014-04-11/ui-group-looking-pension-supplement.html.
HOW PENSION reform affects you. See The Advocate, April 2014: http://www.surs.org/pdfs/advocate/Tier1AdvocateApril2014.pdf
PENSION ‘REFORM’ typo could cause mass exodus. See Daily Illini, April 21, 2014: http://www.dailyillini.com/news/article_21f858ba-c901-11e3-bb14-0017a43b2370.html.

Vol. 7, No. 4, April 2014

ISSN 1946-1860
Editor: William S. Bike
Staff: Neal Lorenzi, Gail Mansfield, Susan S. Stevens, Monica M. Walk
Chair: Michael Moss
Vice Chair: Ahlam Al-Kodmany
Secretary: Mary Berta
Treasurer: Agnes Kawalec
Web Chair: Jeff Alcantar