Established in 1970 by Emory University president Sanford S. Atwood, the Employee Council facilitates communication between Emory employees and university administration and serves as an advisory body to the president. These are the by-laws of the Employee Council. The Employee Council represents the perspective of employees to the administration, recommends change when appropriate, and facilitates communication between the administration and employees at all organizational levels regarding university policies, practices, and programs. The Council fosters closer working relationships between organizational areas and groups of employees.

Article I. Authorization and Purpose

The Employee Council is authorized by the president of the university as an organization through which employees of the university can participate responsibly and meaningfully in the governance of the university community. While the Employee Council is not a decision‐making body in regard to university policy, it shall provide information and ideas to those in decision making positions. It shall seek to represent an employee perspective to the administration and shall support that perspective for the betterment of the university community. Specifically, the

Council shall:

  1. Address issues of common concern involving the life of the university;
  2. Communicate with employees at all organizational levels regarding the various policies, practices, and programs of the university;
  3. Seek to foster closer working relationships between the organizational areas and groups of employees at Emory by endorsing and promoting community‐building programs and activities;
  4. Deliberate on policies and programs proposed by the Department of Human Resources, by Council representatives, or by members of the faculty and staff, and when appropriate, make recommendations to the appropriate authorities of the university; and
    1. Support the principles of equal opportunity based upon the principle of Affirmative Action.

Article II. Membership

Section 1. Representation

Members of the Employee Council shall be full‐time employees of Emory University and shall be selected from all organizational areas and employee levels throughout the university as follows:

Class A (48)

ACADEMIC AFFAIRS (Emory Schools) (25)

  • Emory College (2)
  • Laney Graduate School (1)
  • Oxford College (1)
  • School of Business (1)
  • School of Law (1)
  • School of Medicine (13)
    • Emory campus (9)
    • Grady campus (4)
  • School of Nursing (1)
  • School of Public Health (2)
  • School of Theology (1)
  • Yerkes (2)


  • Athletics & Recreation, Barkley Forum, Career Center, Center for the Advancement of Student Agency and Advocacy, Counseling Center, Dobbs University Center/Campus Life Center, Food Services Admin, Greek Life, Health Promotion, Housing, Play Emory, Residence Life, Student Conduct, Student Success Services



  • Business Office, Emory Photo/Video, Government & Community Affairs, Health Sciences Communications, Marketing & Communications, Media Relations



  • Campus Services (5)
  • Executive Vice Presidents
    • Academic Affairs/Provost (2)
      • Carlos Museum
      • Undergraduate Admissions, Office of Financial Aid, Emory Continuing Education, Universityi Registrar, International Student & Scholar Services, EVP/Provost Office, Student PeopleSoft, Disability Services, Ethics Center, Office of Compliance, Institutional Research, Equal Opportunity, Academic Planning, Global Strategy & Initiatives, Equity & Inclusion, Research Initiatives
    • Health Affairs (2)
      • Winship Cancer Institute & Winship Clinical Trials
      • Office for Clinical Research, EVP Health Affairs Office, WHSC Communications, Spiritual Health, CARES, CEPAR
    • Business & Administration not represented elsewhere (1)
      • Business Practice Improvement, EVP for Business & Administration Office, General Counsel, Internal Audit, Investment Management, Mail Services, Sustainability Initiatives
  • Human Resources (2)
  • Office of the Vice President for Finance (1)
    • Controller Office, EmoryCard, Finace Systems & Data, Grants & Contracts, Payment Services, Payroll, Procurement, Strategic Sourcing, Student Financial Services, Treasury & Debt Management
  • Research Administration (1)

Class B (6)

  • Center for Women (1)
  • Office for Racial & Cultural Engagement (RACE) (1)
  • Office of LGBT Life (1)
  • Office of the President (University Secretary, Deputy to the President) (1)
  • Vice Provost, Equity and Inclusion (Employee Council sponsor) (1)
  • "Emory Report" reporter (1)

Section 2. Selection of Representatives

Organizational heads shall be responsible for the selection of Council representatives and alternates from their areas. The Council's Membership Committee shall be responsible for informing organizational heads of selection procedures.

Section 3. Term of Office

Representatives shall serve a two‐year term. New representatives will begin their terms in September. A Class A representative may serve as a Council representative for an unlimited number of terms, though no more than three (two‐year terms) consecutively. A Class B representative is ex‐officio and may serve for an unlimited number of terms at the discretion of the person appointing them.

Section 4. Duties of Council Members

It shall be the responsibility of the Council members to attend the monthly meetings of the Council, to serve on a standing committee, and to distribute information regarding the Council to their constituents. The Council members shall also bring issues of concern from their constituents to the Council. Council members shall abide by university procedures. For example, no Council member shall involve the Council in legal matters without direct approval of the Office of General Counsel and the Vice President of Equal Opportunity Programs. In the event that a Council representative cannot be present at a meeting, he or she shall send an alternate. It shall be the responsibility of said Council representative to brief his or her alternate on Council issues. Representatives are responsible for notifying the membership committee chairperson of absences prior to meetings so that they can be noted as excused in the minutes. If neither the representative nor their alternate is present at the monthly meeting, this will count as an unexcused absence for the representative.

Section 5. Unexpired Term

In the event of the resignation, inability to serve, or expulsion of a Council representative, the procedures set forth by the Membership Committee shall be followed in selecting a replacement to complete the term.

Section 6. Dismissal of Representatives

Upon recommendation of the Membership Committee, the Executive Committee may dismiss representatives for excessive absences from regularly scheduled meetings. Three unexcused absences shall result in review by the Executive Committee. Before taking action, the Executive Committee shall notify the representative that dismissal is being considered so that he or she may respond. If dismissal occurs, the president of the Council will notify the representative and his or her organizational head so that a replacement may be selected for the constituency affected.

Section 7. Alternates

For every member, there shall be an alternate, selected from the same unit of the university, who shall attend the Council meetings in the event the member must be absent. Alternates may also attend regular meetings, but do not have voting privileges.

Article III. Officers

Section 1. Officers and Elections

The officers of the Employee Council shall be: President, President‐elect, Immediate Past

President, Secretary, Secretary‐elect, Parliamentarian, Treasurer, and Historian, Membership Coordinator, and Hardship Fund Coordinator. President, Secretary, Treasurer, and Historian are elected by the Council body. Parliamentarian, Membership Coordinator, and Hardship Fund Coordinator, are appointed by the President.

Nomination forms should be submitted at least one month prior to elections. Nominees need an opportunity to submit biography descriptions. The membership needs an opportunity to submit bylaw amendments. And the membership needs an opportunity to review the biography descriptions and proposed amendments. Elections should be completed by April. Elections will be coordinated by the Membership Coordinator.

Officers shall serve terms of one year beginning in May of the same year. A simple majority vote of Council members present is required for election. In the event of a tie vote for an office, the President shall cast the deciding vote, according to Robert's Rules.

Section 2. Duties of the President

The President shall preside at all meetings of the Council, shall be an ex-officio member of all committees, shall serve as an ex-officio representative of the University Senate, shall serve as a member of the Senate Executive Committee, and shall serve as chair of the Employee Council Executive Committee. The President shall appoint ad hoc committees as needed. Upon assuming office as President, the person elected shall become an ex-officio member of the Council, and the organizational head of his or her constituency shall select a representative to serve during his or her term as President. The President shall be responsible for reviewing and maintaining the bylaws. Following the President's term of office, and provided that such term of office is the President's last year on the Council, the President shall remain on the council as Past President (ex-officio) for one year for purposes of completing the President's duties on the University Senate.

Section 3. Duties of the President‐elect

The President‐elect shall assist the President in performing his or her leadership responsibilities as appropriate, shall serve as chairperson of the Special Issues Committee, shall preside over Council meetings in the absence of the President, shall serve as an ex‐officio member of the University Senate, shall serve as a member of the University Senate Executive Committee, and shall assume the responsibilities of the President at the end of the officers' annual term. Upon assuming office as President‐elect, the person elected shall become an ex‐officio member of the Council, and the organizational head of his or her constituency shall select a replacement representative to complete his or her unexpired term.

Section 4. Duties of the Secretary

The Secretary shall keep the minutes of Council meetings and shall maintain records of all papers pertaining to Council business for the current year. The Secretary shall give said records to the Historian for archival purposes.

Section 5. Duties of the Secretary-elect

The Secretary‐elect shall assist the Secretary in performing his or her duties as appropriate, keep the minutes of Council meetings in the absence of the Secretary, and assume the duties of Secretary at the end of the officer’s annual term. In addition, the Secretary‐elect shall serve as Secretary of the Executive Committee, shall keep the minutes and agendas of the Executive Committee, and notify its members of meeting dates and locations. The Secretary-elect shall give the minutes and agendas of the Executive Committee to the Historian upon completion of the current year.

Section 6. Duties of the Parliamentarian

The Parliamentarian will enforce parliamentary procedure as specified in Robert's Rules of Order. He or she will counsel the President, Executive Committee and Council members on the governing documents of the Council and parliamentary procedure as requested. He or she will maintain the time limit of debate as determined by the Council.

Section 7. Duties of the Historian

The Historian shall maintain files of the Employee Council, archival and active, and keep records of all activities of the Council. At the end of the Council year, the Historian will transfer all records to the Rose Library. The archival records will include, but are not limited to the official minutes and agendas of both the Executive Committee and the Council. The Historian will also maintain the website for Employee Council. This will include, but not be limited to, updating the Home page for the upcoming year, as well as the membership roster, and by-laws. The Historian will also be responsible for setting up and recording virtual access to regular Council meetings, with a special emphasis on recording the annual Town Hall meeting. Recordings will be included in the archival records submitted to the Rose Library.

Section 8. Duties of the Treasurer

The Treasurer shall manage expenditures and monitor ledgers for Council expenses and prepare annual budget projections for Council activities and related costs. The Treasurer will also work with the President and the Executive Committee and submit a formal budget proposal to the Office of the Provost for the succeeding Council year.

Section 9. Duties of the Membership Coordinator

The Membership Coordinator will chair the Membership Committee. The duties of the membership coordinator should be spread throughout the committee. Duties include updating roster and contacting appointers prior to September of each year, keeping attendance and contacting any individuals not in compliance with attendance guidelines in accordance with Employee Council Bylaws, maintaining listserv, and running elections.

Section 10. Duties of the Hardship Fund Coordinator

The Hardship Fund Coordinator is the main point of contact of funding efforts for the Emory University Hardship Fund. This person may have a team to assist upon request. The Hardship Fund Coordinator will keep the council updated of funding efforts and account information. The coordinator also sits on the Hardship Fund review committee to review and approve new fund requests.

Section 11. Unexpired Term of Elected Officers

In the event that the President or Secretary is unable to complete his or her term of office, the President‐elect or Secretary‐elect shall assume the respective vacant office for the length of the unexpired term. The President‐elect in his or her capacity as President shall then appoint a Council member of the Special Issues Committee to assume the chair of that committee until the next President‐elect is elected. In the event that the office of President‐elect or Secretary-elect becomes vacant, a special election shall be held in order to fill the vacant office for the remainder of the term. A simple majority of members present shall be sufficient to elect.

In the event of the resignation of any other elected officer, a special election shall be held at the next scheduled Council meeting. Prior to this election, nominations will be collected by the membership committee, and a nomination list will be distributed to Council members.

Section 12. Transfer of Records

All papers pertaining to current Council business shall be transferred from outgoing officers to incoming officers. Past records of the Council shall be transferred annually to the Rose Library.

Section 13. Dismissal of Officers

The Executive Committee may dismiss officers for excessive absences from regularly scheduled executive committee meetings. Three absences shall result in review by the Executive Committee. If dismissal occurs, the president of the Council with either appoint a replacement for appointed officers (Parliamentarian, Membership Coordinator, and Hardship Fund Coordinator), or recommend a special election for elected officers (President-elect, Secretary-elect, Treasurer, and Historian). If the current President or Secretary is dismissed from the Executive Committee, the President-elect or Secretary-elect will assume the vacated position.

Article IV. Committees

Section 1. Executive Committee

The Executive Committee shall consist of the President, President‐elect (the Special Issues Committee Chair), immediate Past President, Secretary, Secretary‐elect, Historian, Treasurer, Parliamentarian, Membership Coordinator, and the Hardship Fund Coordinator.  The Executive Committee shall consider all matters presented to it by the President, the Council, or an individual Committee member and make appropriate recommendations for action, shall assist the President in setting the agenda for Council meetings, and shall annually review the purpose and membership of each committee to assure that it is functioning as intended by the Council. The Executive Committee shall meet one week prior to the Council meeting and may be called for special meetings as needed.

Section 2. Membership Committee

The Membership Committee shall 1) maintain a current membership roster, 2) maintain attendance records of all meetings, 3) oversee the selection of Council representatives, and 4) annually review the Council's membership structure to assure that all areas of the university are appropriately represented.

Section 3. Communications Committee

The Communications Committee shall 1) plan at least one Employee Information Fair at which university employees can meet Council representatives and learn about Council activities, 2) plan a Town Hall Meeting with the university president, normally to be held in the spring, 3) work with Emory Report to publicize the Council and its activities, and 4) support other efforts to increase awareness throughout the university community of the Council's purpose and activities.

Section 4. Special Issues Committee

The Special Issues Committee shall consist of the President‐elect as chairperson and ad hoc subcommittees appointed by the Committee chair to address issues identified by the Council President, the Executive Committee, or the Council. Subcommittee members shall serve until their subcommittee has fulfilled its charge as determined by the Council. At such time they may be appointed to another subcommittee.

Section 5. Hardship Fund Committee

The Hardship Fund Committee shall be responsible for creating awareness and soliciting donations for the Emory University Hardship Fund.

Section 6. Committee of Past Presidents

Past Presidents shall assist the Council in an advisory capacity as needed.

Section 7. Senate Representative Committee

The Senate ex‐officio members (President, President‐elect, and immediate Past President), selected representatives, and Senate Committee members shall comprise the Senate Representative Committee of the Employee Council. This Committee shall be chaired by the immediate Past President of the Employee Council and shall be convened as needed.

Article V. University Senate Representatives

The President, President‐elect, and immediate Past President of the Council shall serve on the University Senate as ex‐officio members. The Council shall select six additional representatives from the following organizational areas: four from Academic Affairs (Emory Schools) including one from Oxford College; one from university administration; and one from combined areas of Campus Life, Carlos Museum, Carter Center, Libraries & Information Technology Services, and Office of Development and University Relations. The term for serving on the Senate is two years and coincides with their Council term. This term will be shorter if the representative is serving an unfilled term for another Council member. The Council shall select representatives to each of the following Senate standing committees for two‐year terms: Fringe Benefits (2 members) and Campus Development (1 member). These representatives shall report to the Council about Senate committee activities and shall voice Council concerns to the respective committees as appropriate. Senate committee members do not hold seats on the Senate, unless they are elected chairs of the committee on which they serve.

Article VI. Meetings

Section 1. Regular Meetings

Regular meetings of the Council shall be the 4th Monday of each month, September through May. In the event that this date must be changed, the President will notify members of the change as soon as possible. The September meeting shall serve as an orientation for new members.

Section 2. Special Meetings

Special meetings of the Council may be called at any time by the President or a majority of the membership of the Council.

Section 3. Quorum

One third of the Council membership shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business at any meeting. A simple majority vote is required for passage of motions brought before the Council, unless otherwise specified in the Bylaws.

Section 4. Procedure

The order of business in any meeting shall be determined by the President in consultation with the Executive Committee. The latest edition of Robert's Rules of Order, as enforced by the Parliamentarian, shall govern the conduct of meetings.

Section 5. Visitors

Regular Council meetings are open to all employees of the university and to unaffiliated individuals who are sponsored by a council member in good standing, unless an issue of a particularly sensitive nature is being deliberated, and a majority of Council members vote to close the meeting. A guest speaker may request that attendance during his or her portion of the agenda be limited to Council representatives only. If an employee who is not a Council representative wishes to address the Council directly, they should contact the president of Council or their representative and ask to get added to the agenda.

Section 6. Distribution of official business records

Official minutes and committee reports shall be distributed to each Council member. These documents may be disseminated to a representative's constituency provided that they have been approved by the Council.

Article VII. Amendments to the Bylaws

These bylaws may be amended at any meeting of the Council by two thirds vote of those present, provided that notice of any proposed amendment has been given at a preceding meeting and/or circulated in writing at least two weeks prior to the meeting in which the proposed amendment is to be voted upon. The requirement of advance notice may be waived only by unanimous consent of members present.