Professional Staff Senate

Professional Staff Senate Committees

The work of the Senate is done through several standing and ad hoc committees. Membership on the following senate committees is open to all USM Professional Staff.

Want to join a committee? Please fill out this form to sign up! We'd be happy to have you!

The following is a list of current Committee Members and the committee descriptions.

Executive Committee: Consists of the current year's officers.

  1. Heather Dilios - Chair
  2. Lorrie Spaulding, Vice Chair
  3. Ashley Collins, Co-Secretary
  4. Karen Walsh, Co-Secretary

Responsibilities of the Executive Committee are as follows:

Chair - Conducts monthly ProSen meetings, sets monthly meeting agenda with Executive Committee members, attends monthly Board of Visitors and President's Budget Committee meetings, acts as a liaison and point of contact for other campus committees and Professional Staff members, plans annual retreat agenda with Executive Committee, and presides over retreat activities.

Vice-Chair - Acts as Chair at meetings as necessary in the event of the Chair's absence. The Vice Chair is a member of the Executive Committee that meets once a month to set meeting agendas and discuss outstanding issues and serves on 1-2 additional committees. The Vice Chair also acts as Treasurer for the ProSen and is the coordinator of the New Employee Program.

Co-Secretaries - Schedules yearly retreat and monthly ProSen meetings (this includes finding a time that works for all Senators), books meeting rooms (Portland, Gorham, LAC when necessary), sets up videoconferencing between rooms for scheduled meetings, orders food for retreat, takes minutes at all ProSen meetings, sets monthly meeting agenda with other Executive Committee members and sends out minutes and agenda to Senators each month. Creates and distributes relevant information to all new senators (i.e. New Member binders).

Standing Committees

Professional Development Committee
This committee plans and delivers a minimum of one professional development activity per year. Over the past year this involved guest speakers coming to the first hour of our monthly Professional Staff Senate meetings if the agenda allowed. Membership is open to all USM professional staff.

ProSen Members: Ashley Collins, Helen Gorgas-Goulding, Janis Albright, Karin Pires, Jennifer Hart, Alyssa West, and Jenn White

Professional Recognition and Awards Committee
The committee will examine the feasibility of other recognition vehicles. Membership is open to all USM professional staff.  This committee has merged with the Longevity Award Committee for 2016-2017 session.

ProSen Members: Lorrie Spaulding, John Reed, Judith Ferrante, and Erica Leighton

Election Committee
The Election Committee coordinates and oversees the election process. Only Professional Senate members who are not candidates for the annual election are eligible for membership. 


ProSen Members: Heather Dilios, Michelle Dustin, Ashley Collins, Laurie Spaulding

Ad Hoc Committees

By-Laws & USM Governance Constitution Rewrite Committee (newly combined)
This committee will oversee the By-Laws, proposed amendments, and associated relationship to the University Governance Document. 


ProSen Members: Cindy Hirsch, Melinda Hull

Communications Committee
This committee disseminates information regarding the Professional staff to the University community, which may include awards and recognitions, photos, marketing of upcoming events, and other pertinent information, most likely on the ProSen website. Membership is open to all USM professional staff.

ProSen Members: Heather Dilios, Danielle Vayenas, Karen Walsh, CIndy Hirsch, and Michelle Dustin

In addition to these committees, senate members participate in the work of the larger USM community by representing professional staff on the following University committees:

Longevity Awards: 
This committee consists of several members across the University, including members of the Classified and Professional Senates, to plan for the annual recognition of longevity event held in the spring.

ProSen Members: Heather Dilios, Lorrie Spaulding, Karen Walsh, Judith Ferrante, Karin Pires, Erica Leighton, John Reed

Classified Staff Senate:
Members of this committee attend meetings of the Classified Staff Senate and members serve as liaisons between the Classified Staff Senate and Professional Staff Senate.

ProSen Member: Chris Barr


Faculty Senate:  

Members of this committee attend meetings of the Faculty Senate and serve as liaisons between the Faculty Senate and Professional Staff Senate. A ProSen committee member needs to submit a ProSen report (can be minutes of last meeting) to the FacSen chair and secretary via email at least 3 days prior to an upcoming Faculty Senate meeting. ProSen members on this committee should be prepared to stay late on meeting days because they often run beyond 4:30.

ProSen members: Ashley Collins, Karin Pires

Student Senate: 
Members of this committee attend weekly meetings of the Undergraduate Student Senate and serve as liaisons between the Undergraduate Student Senate and Professional Staff Senate. 

ProSen members: Erica Leighton

USM Board of Visitors:
One ProSen member may attend the monthly meeting of the USM Board of Visitors, a group of volunteers that assists the President of the University in a range of activities that help advance the University, including public relations, government relations and fund-raising.

ProSen Representatives:  Michelle Dustin, Katie Mahoney 

Transportation and Parking Committee: (Inactive)

The Transportation and Parking Committee reviews and recommends policies and practices for the management of traffic, parking and transportation services.  Its purpose is to guide the development of a systemic transportation plan that incorporates health and safety, green and alternative transportation solutions, cost-effectiveness, and fairness to students, faculty, staff and visitors. R

President’s Council on Diversity:

The President's Council on Diversity consists of a cross section of faculty, staff and students that advise the President on issues of equity, diversity, social justice, multiculturalism, and inclusion within the university community. The Council welcomes new faculty members. Council membership is a Presidential appointment.

ProSen Member: Lorrie Spaulding 

President's Council on Climate Neutrality (Inactive): 

The President's council is committed to be a climate neutral institution by 2040, by having a net zero carbon footprint.  The committee's work is based around a Climate Action plan, which has specific goals in regards to climate control and works to develop necessary resources and data to meet the institution's goals.