To be eligible for the Staff Senate you must be a regular, full time staff member (FTE of 0.75 or greater).


  • Monthly Senate Meeting (2nd Thursday of each month)
  • Monthly Committee Meeting (as needed by your assigned committee)
  • Participation in other various events based on availability

The nomination period runs from April 1-26, 2019.  All prospective candidates must self-nominate by completing the online nomination formNominations must be received no later than 4:30 p.m. EST on April 26, 2019.

You may begin to campaign for office following an e-mail verification of eligibility from the Staff Senate confirming receipt of all required materials. Platform statements will be available on the Staff Senate Website beginning May 6, 2019.  


  • Nomination Period – April 1-26, 2019
  • Elections – May 6-24, 2019
  • Election Results – Announced via UKNow June 3, 2019  

Term: July 1, 2019 through June 30, 2022


Candidate David Melanson

Platform Statement

For the past 15 years, the University of Kentucky has been my professional home. I became the University’s first Presidential speechwriter in 2004 where I wrote for then-President Lee T. Todd, Jr. I then worked at the UK College of Pharmacy, helping to tell that College’s rich story of educational, service and research excellence. I now work for the UK Center for Applied Energy Research – a place that is committed to discovering the new technologies and innovations that will power our Commonwealth and the world in an environmentally-responsible manner for generations to come.

There is one common ribbon that has tied my UK experience together: staff.

The people who work for this University have been mentors and friends. But most important: They challenged me and forced me to think differently.

Over the past three years, I have had the distinct privilege of representing UK staff as the Staff Representative to the UK Board of Trustees. Each and every day, I am reminded of our shared commitment and values and all we do to improve lives across the Commonwealth of Kentucky.

At every Board meeting and Trustee function, I share that collective voice with my Board colleagues. I tell our amazing story, pointing out what we do each day to ensure UK can be the University this state needs it to be. If elected, I will partner with you to help ensure that this University will be a better place tomorrow than we are today.

The Staff Representative to the Board of Trustees serves a three-year term. To be eligible to run and serve as Staff Representative to the Board of Trustees, one must be a regular, full time, 1.0 FTE staff member with no relatives working at the University of Kentucky and have served for at least one year of continuous employment at the University.

The nomination period runs April 4-18. Each prospective candidate must submit a completed nomination form (download by clicking "Nomination Form" button above) by 6 PM ET/5PM CT on April 18 to qualify to run. A signed statement from the supervisor, including approval to allow the employee to stand for election and allowance of sufficient time away from normal work duties (approximately 25%) to perform Staff Trustee duties, if elected, must accompany the form. The department of the elected candidate will be compensated for time spent on Trustee business. The petition must contain at least 25 signatures of regular staff with an FTE greater than or equal to .75. Candidates may not sign their own petitions. Each candidate must also submit a platform statement of no more than 250 words, including his/her function within the university and goals. Return completed documents to 203D Main Building or email to Denee.Wilson@uky.edu.

You may begin to campaign following an e-mail verification of eligibility from the Staff Senate confirming receipt of all required materials. Platform statements will be available on the Staff Senate Website beginning May 6, 2019.  


  • Nomination Period – April 4-18, 2019
  • Campaign Period – May 6-24, 2019
  • Candidate Debate at Staff Senate Meeting – May 9, 2019
  • Elections – May 10-24, 2019
  • Election Results – Announced via UKNow June 3, 2019  

Do Staff Senators need to be paid for attending Senate meetings and committee meetings?

A note from T. Lynn Williamson, Deputy General Counsel, University of Kentucky Office of Legal Counsel:

"It continues to be my interpretation of University policy that attendance at meetings of the Staff Senate and committees of the Staff Senate is work time; therefore, that time is paid work time. 

The Staff Senate is a creation of a Governing Regulation (GR V). In that sense, it is no different than the University Assembly or the University Senate (GR IV). It is unquestionable to me that meetings of the University Senate are (paid) work time. All faculty who attend the University Senate meetings, as well as Senate Council meetings, are on paid time. 

Similarly, meetings of committees of the Staff Senate (and the University Senate) are paid work time. 

With that said, all aspects of employment, and, in particular, the job responsibilities and the flexibility of staff employees and faculty employees are quite different. Faculty employees decide to run for election to the University Senate without seeking permission of the department chair or the dean. Faculty employees freely decide their schedules and attend University Senate meetings and Senate committee meetings without seeking approval from their department chair or dean. However, Staff Senators are required to have the permission of their supervisor to run for or serve on the Staff Senate. 

GR V.B.6. states as follows:

“A Senator who serves as an officer or serves on University and campus wide committees has additional responsibilities that may require additional release time from normal work duties. In advance of assuming such duties, Senators must discuss with his or her supervisor the impact on the unit’s ability to meet service responsibilities.”

I think that section of the GR further verifies the opinion noted above. By giving a staff employee permission to serve, the supervisor is acknowledging that attendance at Staff Senate meetings is paid time. It is IMPORTANT to highlight the GR’s provision that a Staff Senator MUST “…discuss with her/his supervisor the impact on the unit’s ability to meet service responsibilities.”       

Staff Senate meetings are set weeks (perhaps months) in advance. It is the Staff Senator’s responsibility to inform her/his supervisor as far in advance as possible the schedule of the Staff Senate meetings. Committee meetings are more problematic and there may be occasions in which a particular Staff Senator cannot serve on a particular Staff Senate committee because that committee’s meetings are inconsistent with the responsibilities of the unit. 

There may be different levels of supervisor’s approval depending on whether the employee is exempt or non-exempt. If there is a possibility that a non-exempt employee, while performing her/his regular duties and performing duties of a Staff Senator, e.g., Senate and committee meetings, will be in a pay status for over 40 hours in any week, the non-exempt employee MUST also have approval of the unit supervisor/administrator who is authorized to approve over-time pay. The unit official who is authorized to approve over-time may or may not be the employee’s immediate supervisor. Thus if overtime hours/pay may be needed in order for the non-exempt employee to serve on the Staff Senate, an employee may need approval/permission from two University officials.       

Advance notice is the responsibility of the Staff Senator.

An attempt to accommodate and to be flexible are the responsibility of the supervisor of the Staff Senator."