Guidelines for the Selection and Approval of Named Chair Appointments

PDAD&C #052, 1995/96


TO: Principals, Deans, Academic Directors & Chairs
FROM: Adel Sedra, Vice-President and Provost
DATE: June 25, 1996
RE: Guidelines for the Selection and Approval of Named Chair Appointments

Holders of Named Chairs will often be selected from among the senior members of the department or faculty. Although it may not always be appropriate to have an open internal competition, nevertheless the honour of occupying a named chair should be conferred after a transparent process. The department should be informed of the opportunity for a Named Chair, and the Chair of the department should recommend the appointment upon the advice of the departmental executive or appointments committee.

On occasion, funding may be attracted because of the presence of a particular senior faculty member in a department. Even in such cases, however, the department should be informed of the potential Named Chair, and the chair of the department must seek the recommendation of the departmental committee.

The Dean should forward the recommendation to the Provost’s Office with a brief description of the selection process, the c.v. of the candidate, and a draft letter of appointment. The letter should specify the nature of the appointment as Named Chair (it may or may not be for a limited term depending on the agreement), and state that it does not replace the faculty member’s tenured appointment in the department, which remains governed by the University’s normal policies and procedures. The appointment should not be announced publicly until provostial approval has been given.

Where approval has been obtained for a search outside the University to fill a new position, all the standard policies and procedures apply for the selection and approval of these appointments. Advertisements will carry the name of the Chair and a statement of any academic terms and conditions. There will be two separate letters of appointment: the usual letter of appointment as a faculty member at the University of Toronto, and a second letter appointing the candidate to the Named Chair as in the paragraph above.

In all cases, the arms-length role of donors should be clearly defined and well understood from the beginning of the process. While donors may be shown the courtesy of informal meetings with candidates or the proposed appointee, they shall not serve as voting members of the selection committee. Under no conditions shall a donor select or veto the holder of a Named Chair at the University of Toronto.