UNIVERSITY CORPORATION FOR ATMOSPHERIC RESEARCH
of Trustees Meeting
duly convened meeting of the UCAR Board of Trustees was held
at the National Science Foundation in Arlington, Virginia. Present
for all or portions of the meeting were:
Board convened in Executive Session from 8:00-9:00am. (The minutes
are kept in the corporate offices.)
1. WELCOME AND AGENDA REVIEW
The Board convened in Regular Session. Chairman of the Board Otis Brown welcomed NSF hosts, Trustees and guests. He reviewed the agenda and subsequently asked for adoption. It was moved, seconded, and passed to adopt the agenda as presented.
2. CHAIRMAN'S REPORT
As follow-up from the last Board Meeting, Chairman Brown said that NCAR Director Tim Killeen will discuss the new NCAR Strategic Plan a copy of which each of the Trustees received in the mail before the meeting. He also reported that the website for recruiting students to the atmospheric sciences is in development and should be ready for review late summer or early this fall; that UCAR will continue the graduate student survey; and that an article on the recent trends in graduate student applications and admissions by Rick Anthes, Gabor Vali, Dennis Thomson, and David Houghton has been submitted to The Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society (BAMS). Leo Donner, Chairman of the Personnel Committee, announced that in Executive Session held earlier in the day, the Trustees approved the appointments of Gerald Meehl (CGD/NCAR) and Anne Smith (ACD/NCAR) to Senior Scientist positions. Congratulations to both of them!
3. SECRETARY'S REPORT
Secretary Ronald Smith presented the minutes of the February 2001 Board of Trustees' meeting and asked for approval. It was moved, seconded, and passed to approve the minutes as written.
4. TREASURER'S REPORT
Treasurer Patricia Woodworth presented the report of the Consolidated Statement of Funding and Expenditures for the first seven months of FY2001. She reviewed the program funding and expenditures/commitments noting that NCAR's NSF base is up 4.6% over last year, and a decrease in NOAA funding, primarily for COMET. Woodworth also reported that revenues and expenses were "pretty much as expected" but that market volatility makes it difficult to project UCAR investments, which are holding steady at about the same value as one year ago. It was regularly moved, seconded, and passed to accept the report of the Treasurer.
5. AUDIT AND FINANCE COMMITTEE REPORT
Woodworth reported on the committee meeting held the previous day. She reported that the 1991 and 1996 Series revenue bonds will be refinanced to extend the maturity date and provide UCAR with a lower interest rate. The committee also discussed the UCAR investment policy in light of the downturn in the stock market, recommending modifications to permit greater flexibility in our investments. The committee also heard that the UCAR Business Continuity plan is being tested in November, and that the Risk Assessment has been completed and there are no surprises.
It was regularly moved, seconded, and passed to accept the report of the Audit and Finance Committee.
6. PERSONNEL COMMITTEE REPORT
Personnel Committee Chairman Leo Donner reported on the meeting of the committee held the previous day. He reported that the committee had received an update on UCAR's response to the APS report on the status of women scientists at NCAR last year. Some of the response actions include: creation of an early career scientist forum, increased emphasis on mentoring, and the development of 5-year career plans for all staff. He also said that UCAR is examining the day-care facility issue. Donner also reported that the committee reviewed the new employee recognition policy and approved the changes, which include establishing new categories for recognition of achievement. The Trustees have copies of that policy in their materials. He said the Committee heard an exciting report on the planned hiring of a number of new career scientists at NCAR, and on the salary increases coming in slightly under the 4% approved salary budget cap.
It was regularly moved, seconded, and passed to accept the report of the Personnel Committee.
7. NSF REPORT
Cliff Jacobs, Head-UCAR and Lower Atmospheric Facilities Oversight Section, reported on the status of the NSF budget and the NSF Review of NCAR. He reported that the NSF budget request for FY02 is smaller than expected with decreases in the Research and Related, and MRE accounts, but increases expected for biocomplexity, nanotechnology, ITR and Learning for the 21st Century. He reported that the HIAPER airplane acquisition is proceeding with estimated costs to be in the $80M range.
Jacobs reported on status of the NSF Review by saying that the mail reviewers have been selected and have received the review materials prepared by the NCAR divisions. He said there will be "selected" disclosure of the review panelists' names since there may be some overlap between mail and on-site reviewers. He said the divisions will not be required to answer the summaries of the mail reviews in writing, but that these issues will form the core of the on-site panel visits.
8. UCAR PRESIDENT'S REPORT
UCAR President Richard Anthes reported to the Trustees on a number of issues, including the following.
He reported in depth on plans for a new building to be built adjacent to the Foothills Lab #3. He outlined the current situation of high lease costs for the Pearl Street facility that houses the offices of Finance and Administration, and the lack of room for any growth at the NCAR Mesa or at the existing Foothills campus. He further noted prohibitive costs and the physical impossibility to fully modernize and met all safety standards for chemistry labs at the Mesa; to provide for growth in SCD and RAP; and to accommodate the needed 35,000 sq feet if we are to vacate the present leased space at Pearl Street when the lease expires in 2004. He told the Trustees that there are "many hoops to jump through" regarding approval from the City of Boulder, bond issuance details, and NSF approval and that he will keep them well-informed at each of the upcoming meetings, and will bring it for Trustee approval as the plans to build become more firm.
Other matters: Anthes thanked Kelvin Droegemeier for his very able leadership as Chairman of the URC since 1998. Droegemeier's term on the Committee expires this coming year. Anthes also reported briefly on the NSF reviews of NCAR divisions beginning in September and commencing in November with the UCAR and NCAR Management Reviews.
9. NCAR DIRECTOR's REPORT
NCAR Director Tim Killeen reported on current NCAR Activities and briefed the Trustees on the new NCAR Strategic Plan.
He noted that he had been the Director now for almost full year, and outlined the activities during that time including the following: instituting a new internal NCAR budget review process showing sources of, allocations, and uses of funding for each of the divisions; the creation of the Education and Outreach Strategic Plan; development of the NCAR Strategic Plan; the review of the HIAPER project; development of the NCAR review documents. He outlined observing and computational needs noting the NCAR Advanced Research Computing System (ARCS) procurement which he hopes he will be able to report on in detail the fall. He asked the Trustees to take a look at the 2000 Annual Scientific Report, which is a comprehensive look at divisional accomplishments over the past year. He reported on recent hiring of 10 scientists into Scientist I positions. Killeen said that this new incoming group of young scientists will help to re-balance the demographics of the scientific staff, which in recent years has shifted toward senior-level scientists. He reported on the new NCAR Advisory Council comprised of university and business leaders who will meet once a year to advise him on NCAR matters and provide an opportunity for greater outreach to the private sector.
Killeen outlined the draft of the new NCAR Strategic Plan which describes "NCAR as Integrator" focusing on traditional core strengths and new strategic interdisciplinary initiatives developed by the scientific staff. The Trustees were sent copies of the document in advance of the meeting. Comments from the Trustees included: need to articulate more clearly the connections with the universities, and how UCAR and the universities can work more closely together; need a stronger statement of how NCAR sees itself fitting within the greater atmospheric and related science community, and on NCAR as integrator of what aspects of the science.
10. ADVOCACY PRIORITIES AND UPDATE ON THE FEDERAL FY02 BUDGET.
Jack Fellows, VP for Corporate Affairs, detailed the revised UCAR advocacy strategy taking into account the Trustees remarks at the February Board Meeting. He noted that the highest advocacy priority remains: to double the NSF budget. He reported on the "very effective" Hill Briefings and visits to Congressional staffers, OMB and OSTP in recent months
Cindy Schmidt, Director, Office of Government Affairs, outlined actions taken by the OGA office in support of the Federal Science Budgets, including Action Alerts, Rick Anthes' testimony to Congress, and visits by policy makers to UCAR. She announced that the 2nd AMS Congressional Fellow, Ana Unruh, has been chosen from an outstanding group of applicants.
April Burke, Lewis-Burke Associates, presented an analysis of the 2002 Federal Science Budget, noting that "prevailing wisdom" has it that, in the final analysis, NSF's MRE and R&R accounts will increase. Mark Burnham also from Lewis-Burke outlined NOAA and NASA budgets saying that in general there will be allocation increases in FY02, but warned of FY2003 as a year of uncertainty.
11. NSF DEPUTY DIRECTOR REMARKS
Joseph Bordogna, NSF Deputy Director, joined the Trustees for discussion of topics of common interest. Bordogna spoke on the pressure to spend MRE funds to build "cyber infrastructures" --distributed instruments beyond collaborative tools and high band width connectivity. He spoke of the importance of integrating research and education and on building partnerships between industry and academe and between academe and K-12 education.
12. NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE (NWS) UPDATE
Jack Hayes, Director of the Office of Science and Technology at the National Weather Service, updated the Trustees on NWS activities. He outlined the Science and Technology goals of integrating S&T into NWS operations and spoke of plans to work with ongoing programs at NOAA and other labs--e.g., OAR, NESDIS, and NCAR to solve the nation's forecasting needs. He talked about a "joint institute test bed" to address on forecasting issues. Otis Brown noted that it was a very "pleasant surprise" to see new policies to encourage integration of operations, basic research, and development.
13. US HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES' APPROPRIATIONS COMMITTEE STAFF VISIT
Frank Cushing, staff member to the House of Representatives Appropriations Committee, joined the Trustees for discussions on the FY02 budget for science and other items of common interest. He said that he doesn't see any major differences in the recent chairman shifts from Republican to Democrat, but noted that the reorganization of the Senate is somewhat delaying the budget process. Cushing also said that he would be very surprised to have a budget bill finished and signed by 1 October.
Discussion with the Trustees included questions on the amount of "pork" in the budget. Cushing said it was indeed fat with "pork"--as of today (June 2001), there are 2500 requests totaling $49B, more in the whole of last year.
14. NASA EARTH SCIENCES DIRECTOR REMARKS
Jack Kaye, Director of NASA's Earth Science Research Division summarized the program and the budget for his office. He noted a significant drop, about $200M in the FY02 budget, and noted the impact on the university Earth System Science programs. In general, he said he is concerned about the future of some programs funded by NASA if the budget isn't preserved.
Discussion centered on the importance of coordinating climate modeling work among the agencies, and the importance of the observation and modeling communities working together to improve the models, predictions, and impacts of natural disasters.
15. EDUCATION AND OUTREACH STRATEGIC PLAN
Anthes presented the E&O Strategic Plan for approval, noting the extensive discussion with the Board in February. He summarized the E & O Office and outlined the final plan as presented today. He noted that there is nothing substantively new in the plan from the last time the Trustees reviewed it and asked that the Board approve it formally. Comments, in general, centered around what the priorities are and how to measure success. Anthes will keep the Board informed as to the progress of the Education and Outreach activities and implementation of the new strategic plan.
It was moved, seconded, and passed to approve the Education and Outreach Strategic Plan.
The Board convened in Executive Session from 4:00-5:15pm. (The minutes are kept in the corporate offices.)
Wednesday, 13 June 2001
16. UCAR OFFICE OF PROGRAMS STATUS REPORT
Jack Fellows, Director of UOP, outlined current activities within the following programs:
COSMIC. The COSMIC program is on track, Fellows said, with the launch vehicle contract with NSPO in Taiwan expected to be signed in July, and work on the satellite system beginning in mid-August. The launch is scheduled for March 2005.
SuomiNet: The demand for monitoring stations is greater than expected; there are now 13 sites committed to the system across the country, and one in Finland; three are operational and 10 soon will be.
Unidata: Fellows announced the success of the THREDDS proposal to NSF. THREDDS (Thematic Real-time Environmental Distributed Data Services) is a prototype system to publish, locate, analyze, and visualize a wide variety of environmental data for research and classroom use.
DLESE. DLESE has been awarded funding of $27M over the next 5 years. The Program Center resides at UCAR, the Community Center at Carleton College, and the Collections Center at Montana State University.
JOSS. Fellows reported on the success of the ACE-ASIA field program during March through May of 2001. The Aerosol Characterization Experiments (ACE) are designed to increase our understanding of how atmospheric aerosol particles affect the Earth's climate system. These experiments integrate in-situ measurements, satellite observations, and models to reduce the uncertainty in calculations of the climate forcing due to aerosol particles and improve the ability of models to predict the influences of aerosols on the Earth's radiation balance. Fellows noted that the data products are being used extensively already.
COMET. There has been a 120% increase in COMET's web site useage in the last 6 months, primarily due to the new modules recently created for web use. And COMET is developing a teletraining session on flash flood forecasting to be delivered in late June.
VSP. Fellows noted that 23 Post-doc appointments have been made in VSP recently. VSP has also begun planning for the 2002 NOAA Summer Institute 2002 with Richard Somerville (Scripps) named as scientific leader, and the WOCE Young Investigators Workshop in 2002.
17. UCAR FOUNDATION
Jeff Reaves, Vice President of the UCAR Foundation, brought the Trustees up to date on recent Foundation activities, introduced an updated UCAR Intellectual Property Revenue Distribution method and sought re-election of Gene Keluche to the UCAR Foundation Board.
Reaves outlined the new company--Intelligent Weather Solutions--which is being created by the Foundation using IP developed at UCAR (models, 4D "weather engines," data bases, data base management systems, new observing capabilities) to provide advanced weather and climate information to customers in energy transportation, agriculture, construction, etc.
Reaves explained that revenue flows to the Foundation through license fees, royalties and the sale of equity positions and that a portion of Foundation proceeds is returned to UCAR for the advancement of its scientific, technical and educational programs. In addition, a portion of Foundation proceeds is returned to employees who developed patented technologies.
For Trustees' information, he presented a new distribution plan for revenues from IP patents which will provide revenue more equitably to the inventors, scientific divisions, and the entity (NCAR, UOP, EO), UCAR, and UCAR Foundation.
And one final Foundation matter: It was planned to introduce a resolution to re-elect Gene Keluche to the UCAR Foundation Board. However, unexpectedly, there was not a quorum present on the second morning of the meeting, thus the resolution re-electing Gene Keluche to the UCAR Foundation Board was unable to be introduced. Therefore, after the meeting concluded, a written consent of resolution was executed unanimously, as required, by the full Board and in writing to re-elect Gene Keluche to the UCAR Foundation Board. That consent of resolution and the signatures of the Trustees are attached to these minutes.
18. NOAA OAR DIRECTOR REMARKS
David Evans, Director OAR/NOAA, joined the Trustees to discuss NOAA research issues and funding situation. Evans, in acknowledging Jack Hayes' (NWS) energy and enthusiasm, noted how important it is for operational and research divisions to work together to provide better weather services to the nation..
19. UNSTRUCTURED DISCUSSION
Tim Killeen mentioned that he welcomed the Trustees' input on the strategic plan. He asked them to feel free to visit him or call with comments, provide advice, etc. as the next draft is developed.
In Otis Brown's absence, Vice-Chairman Leo Donner announced the next meeting dates:
8-9 October and 13-14 February 2001 in Boulder, and 12-13 June at the NSF in Arlington, VA.
The meeting adjourned at noon.
End of Minutes