President’s Annual Report
FNBFA Annual General Meeting
April 29th, 2010
Mount Allison University
Executive Committee 2009-2010
President: Linda Lequin
Past President: Rick Hudson
Vice-President: Dennis Desroches
Secretary-Treasurer: Jack Vanderlinde
Executive Director: Gilles Allain
This year, besides our lobbying efforts, the executive’s mandate was to examine the role and
function of FNBFA, from its communications strategies to its governance structures.
1. How we started
A complete analysis of our association, including its objectives, mission, policies and
operations started with the very first meeting of the board in August, the first day long
meeting to begin the process of reforming our Federation. At the second meeting, in
September, the Federation’s priorities for the year were determined.
A Media Relations workshop for member associations was held in October of 2009.
Representatives from all of the province’s Faculty Associations attended. Thanks to
David Robinson of CAUT, who moderated the session, and to the Executive Director
for organizing it.
In November, the FNBFA held a day and a half long governance and policy workshop,
moderated by Lori Morinville of the Confederation of Alberta Faculty Associations.
Since then, all the board members worked on the policies.
We also examined the committees of the Federation. The Status of Women has been
eliminated and two new committees were created: Equity and Workplace Issues. Our
internal committees are as follows:
2.1 Communications Committee
Chair: Dennis Desroches
Peter Brown (MAFA), Miriam Jones (UNBSJ) and Gilles Allain
Michèle Caron (ABPPUM)
2.3 Workplace Issues (Health, Safety, and Collective Bargaining)
Collective Bargaining: Susanne Prior (FAUST)
2.4 Legal Defence:
Chair: Jon Thompson (AUNBT)
Gary Long (ABPPUMCE) and Jeannette Gaudet (FAUST)
2.5 Semeluk Scholarship Selection Committee
Chair : Jeannette Gaudet (FAUST)
Annie-Hélène Boudreau (ABPPUMS), Linda Lequin (ABPPUM)
2.6 Nicole Raymond Award
Chair : Jean Sauvageau (FAUST)
Rick Hudson (MAFA) and Michel Cardin (ABPPUM) and Linda Lequin (President)
We established a web redesign sub-committee consisting of our Vice President,
Dennis Desroches, Peter Brown of MAFA and our Executive Director, Gilles Allain.
They have already vetted seven proposals and have chosen Kiers Marketing Group to
redesign the website. The English version of the Website has been updated while the
French version is undergoing revisions.
Besides Gilles Allain, our Executive director, we welcomed Jenelle Sobey to the
Federation in January. Her research will enrich the content of the Federation’s website,
as well as helping to fulfil the Federation’s key goal of keeping member associations
apprised of recent developments in PSE in New Brunswick.
5. Internal and external communications
I am happy to say that the English version of the Website has been updated. We
established a web redesign sub-committee consisting of our Vice President, Dennis
Desroches, Peter Brown of MAFA and our Executive Director, Gilles Allain. They
chose Kiers Marketing Group to redesign the website. During the coming year, the
French version will be revamped.
We have decided in favour of an electronic format for our newsletter, which represents
significant cost savings. In this format, it will be available on the new website, and
perhaps in electronic format distributed to the member associations. The federation
hired a Research and Analysis assistant, who will assist the Executive in compiling the
crucial data necessary to inform the Federation’s members of developments in PSE in
New Brunswick. We welcomed Jenelle Sobey to the Federation this January. Her
work will contribute to keeping member associations apprised of recent developments
in PSE in New Brunswick. She has already prepared the information for at least three
The Communications Committee has already prepared briefs and press releases. One
of them discusses the federal and provincial government’s decision to fund expansion
of Crandall University, a private university that has inexplicably received public
funding. We submitted a brief to the provincial government in advance of their
December budget, call for better, and more sustained, funding for Universities in New
Brunswick. And we have responded to various Telegraph Journal editorials, one in
particular calling for an end to tenure. The TJ has not published the FNBFA’s
response, but it did see circulation among the province’s Faculty Associations.
Our Secretary-Treasurer, Jack Vanderlinde, prepared a revised budget cutting $ 60,000
from the 2008-2009 budget. The savings went directly to our member associations.
The board was able to reduce the .mil rate from 2.4 to 1.9. Unfortunately, that led to
our not being able to have any administrative/secretarial help for our Executive
7. Member Associations
The FNBFAs’ meetings have always helped the representatives to better understand
what is happening on the different campuses, so that all can prepare for what might
come up, especially with our dealings with the university administrators. The
Executive decided this year that representatives from two member associations should
be able to attend CAUTs’ francophone conference entitled: « Francophones
minoritaires et syndicalisme dans l’éducation postsecondaire: de la défense des droits
à la pleine reconnaissance». This workshop is to be held in Ottawa in June 2010.
The Executive director and myself have had the pleasure of meeting several
association members since I accepted the presidency. We met with the professors at
UNBSJ in mid-September, and with the professors of the Shippagan in October. In
December, we attended a special MAFA meeting at Mount Allison University and
addressed our AUNBT colleagues during their semi-annual meetings in Saint John and
Fredericton. In April, attended MAFA’s Annual General Meeting, and the day before
the FNBFA AGM, we will again meet with UNB professors at UNB Saint John.
8. Government Relations
A group of faculty from New Brunswick (Michel Cardin, ABPPUM, Dennis
Desroches, FNBFA Vice President and myself) along with the FNBFA Executive
Director met with the federal New Brunswick Liberal caucus while attending CAUT’s
semi- annual meeting in Ottawa in November.
We discussed in detail the injustices caused by the new government policies
concerning the transferring of funds to the provinces. With the new policy in place
today, we stand to lose 235 million dollars between 2007 and 2014. It was agreed at
this meeting to attempt to coordinate a series of press releases and other lobbying
activities between the FNBFA and the federal New Brunswick Liberal Caucus
Mandatory retirement was always a priority for the FNBFA. We are pleased to see that
2010 saw the end of mandatory retirement for all university professors in the province.
The Executive Director and I were able to take part in the day of lobbying held in
Fredericton on December 17th 2009. I was able to address important issues to Premier
Shawn Graham and the Minister of Education, Hon. Donald Arsenault. Regardless of
what happened at that meeting, that they respect professors’ right to strike, a
Conciliation Board was named in the negotiations at UNB. We sent a letter urging the
minister not to name a Board, but the decision was already made. The Federation will
intervene in this matter so that it doesn’t happen again.
In the meantime, at the CAUT Council meeting in April 2010 I asked Larry Hale
(President of the Defence Fund) and Peter Simpson (CAUT) to examine our
province’s unique situation with the Conciliation Board process and pay the invoice
sent by the ABPPUM.
Apparently, no one on the Board wanted to take the decision without going through
the entire membership. After discussion, they both decided that since the other
provinces have a right to reimbursement for conciliators before strike action is
declared, the Defence Fund will reimburse lawyer’s fees for the ABPPUM’s
Conciliation Board. I will bring up the unique situation in New Brunswick at the next
Defence Fund’s annual meeting so that UNB and all other universities in the province
who have to experience this trying ordeal not have to pay out of their own pockets.
In June, the Federation participated in the second annual meeting of the ACCFA, the
Atlantic Canada Council of Faculty Associations. Many of the issues facing PSE in the
Atlantic region demand that we develop an interprovincial strategy of solidarity, and
so our participation in this Council affirms our solidarity with other Atlantic region
faculty associations and federations. The FNBFA also hosted a breakfast for ACCFA
at CAUT Council in November, where it was agreed that ACCFA should endeavour to
meet with Mike Savage, the federal liberal critic for Social Development and Post
Secondary Education, and we are in the process of coordinating this meeting with
other Atlantic Provincial Associations. The ACCFA’s next Annual General Meeting is
scheduled for June 2010 in Moncton.
At CAUT, the FNBFA was represented by the Executive Director, the Vice President
At our first meeting the Board decided that the Executive committee and the Executive
Director should be kept up to date on the subject of the provincial faculty’s pension
plans, their rights as well as those of the community college teachers. We are keeping
very close watch on the province’s policies around the right to strike in the Education
sector, and on the questions of operating grants for our universities. The Executive
Director is well equipped to face these challenges and he regularly briefs the Executive
Committee. Our actions concerning our priorities are documented in this report and in
the Executive Director’s report.
In April 2010, the Prix Nicole Raymond Award was awarded to two recipients.
I am pleased to announce that the 2009 award was given to Suzanne Prior (FAUST)
for her excellent leadership and involvement in her association.
The 2010 award is given to Miriam Jones (UNBSJ) for her involvement in
postsecondary education. Her blog, Living in Interesting Times, is a great source of
information for all of us.
10. Final Words
I want to thank some marvellous people who helped me through this year as President:
David Bell, for reminding me what is truly important in our Federation;
Michele Caron, for her strong stand on important issues, her judicious remarks and her
Dennis Desroches, who is wise beyond his years and witty;
Rick Hudson, for his insight and great sense of humour in the face of adversity;
Jack Vanderlinde, for his efforts and time and even more time to do the treasurer’s
and last, but not least, Gilles Allain, for all of his sacrifices.
President of the FNBFA