Who appoints members of the OSU Board of Trustees?

Appointing members of the OSU governing board is the role of the Governor. The Governor makes a nomination, which must then be confirmed by the Oregon State Senate.

What is a trustee?

Trustees are public officials who hold a fiduciary responsibility for the university. Fiduciary responsibility is often thought of as financial management, but it is much more than that. It is about overall management, oversight, and sustainability of the institution. Trustees are not compensated for their work on the Board. The number of trustees authorized by law ranges from a minimum of 11 to a maximum of 15, and the actual number of trustees within this range is fixed or changed by the Governor.

The OSU Board of Trustees consists of the following members:

  • The president of the university serving as an ex officio, nonvoting member;
  • A student enrolled at the university serving a two-year term as a voting member;
  • A member of the faculty serving a two-year term as a voting member as set by the Governor;
  • A non-faculty employee (commonly referred to as a staff trustee) serving a two-year term as a voting member as set by the Governor;
  • The remaining trustees serve “at-large” with terms of four years.
  • Trustees may not be appointed to serve more than two consecutive full terms; reappointment must be approved by the Governor and the legislature.

How does one apply?

If you wish to apply, an application must be submitted to the Governor’s Office. The application consists of three parts: an interest form (available on the Governor’s boards and commissions website), a resume or CV, and a bio. This packet should be submitted to executive.appointments@oregon.gov. If you have any questions about how to apply, Governor Brown’s executive appointments staff is available at that same email address, or you can reach out to the OSU Board Office.

Are there endorsement processes for these positions?

A number of groups at OSU have processes for making recommendations to the Governor on potential candidates that she might consider. For example, the OSU Board has a process for recommending candidates to fill at-large vacancies. The OSU Faculty Senate has a process for recommending candidates to fill any vacancy anticipated for the faculty trustee position. The Associated Students for OSU and the local SEIU chapter each have a process for making recommendations for the student and staff positions, respectively. The various processes are announced by the groups and distributed to their respective stakeholders.

When making recommendations for the at-large positions, the Board’s Executive & Audit Committee is guided by the Board’s policy Recommending Candidates for At-Large Board Positions and conducts its process over the course of two publicly noticed meetings – the first meeting is to assess the current composition of the Board against criteria identified in its policy to help guide the identification of potential candidates and the second meeting is to review potential candidates.

Where can I get more information about serving on the Board?

Please reach out to the OSU Board Office by emailing trustees@oregonstate.edu. Staff are happy to answer any questions.