April 2021 Meeting Minutes

April 2021 Meeting Minutes

Board of Trustees

08 April 2021

The North Arkansas College Board of Trustees met in regular session on Thursday, 08, April in JPH conference center. Chair Miller called the meeting to order at 3:00 p.m. Trustees Debbie Johnson, Linda Pledger, Pam Henry, Chris McNew, Kevin Cheri, Don Tomlinson, R.G. Earnest, and Sarah Newman were present.

North Arkansas College personnel attending included Richard Stipe, Micki Somers, Aaron Bueg, Ryan Hoffman, Ricci Dillon, Nell Bonds, Dr. Josephine Kershaw, Tavonda Brown, Dr. Rodney Arnold, Rick Massengale, Brandon Cone, John Gripka, and Dr. Laura Berry.


Approval of Agenda

Chair Miller asked if there were any changes to the agenda as presented. There being none a motion was made, unanimously approved.


Regular Reports

Finance Report—Richard Stipe shared E&G and Auxiliary budget activities through March 2021.

In the E&G fund, Richard Stipe noted the operating budget revenue was at $11,628,000 of anticipated annual revenue leading a positive trend. Year-to-date expenditures were $10,749,271 of expenses from this point last year. Richard stated the revenue and expenditures are trending slightly higher to previous years.  

Auxiliary: Revenue for year-to-date was at $1,107,250 and Expenditures was at $1,054,384. Auxiliary net operating gain year-to-date totaled $52,863.


President’s Report—Dr. Esters stated registration for summer and fall semesters were open. Northark will offer online, live online, hybrid, and face-to-face or site-to -site to students. Northark will add an eSports team this fall and currently looking for a part-time coach. Dr. Esters stated the Center for Robotics and Manufacturing Innovation is moving forward and exploring options for funding. He mentioned Governor Asa Hutchinson announced a $14.7 million Ready for Life Initiative that targets to strengthen Arkansas’ workforce.  Dr. Esters congratulated the Northark IT program for being ranked number one in the nation by the NSF National Convergence Network.

A student vaccination clinic will be held on campus on April 14,2021 and current students and those who have been admitted are eligible to receive the vaccine. National Signing Day will be held virtually April 15, at 9 a.m. and will be broadcasted on Northark’s YouTube channel.


Consent Agenda

The Consent Agenda included the March Regular Meeting Minutes, Policy: Statement of Anti-Discrimination. Technical Certificate in Turf Management, Technical Certificate in Insurance Risk Management, Technical Certificate in Artisan Professional, Associate of Science in Information Technology, Associate of Applied Science in Risk Management.  Chair Miller asked for a motion to approve the Consent Agenda. A motion was made by Trustee Earnest seconded by Trustee Newman, and unanimously approved.


Monitoring Report

Aaron Bueg presented the Enhance the use of technology & innovation; ensure quality (technology infrastructure report. Aaron stated the CARES Act funding helped purchase 100 student laptops, 130 employee laptops, and a new Virtual Desktop lab that allows IT students to access labs remotely. He reported twelve new servers, security cameras, and twelve Zoom rooms were additions of improvements.


Executive Session

Chair Miller asked for a motion into Executive Session. Trustee Cheri made a motion, which was seconded by Trustee Johnson. Trustee Cheri motioned for the Board to reconvene in regular session, which was seconded by Trustee Earnest. No action was taken.

Once in Regular Session, Chair Miller noted that Trustee Newman had chaired the President’s Evaluation and Compensation Committee and that the Executive Session had been held to discuss those results.

The Board recommended giving Dr. Randy Esters a 2.2% raise and extending his contract an additional year. Trustee Newman said, “We appreciate everything everyone have done during this past very difficult year, that appreciation extends to how you have continued to pursue excellence at every level.” She continued to say, “We are very aware of how many times our proposed salary increase has been refused unless it was exactly the same increase as the staff.” Trustee Newman made a motion to approve the raise and extension of Dr. Ester’s contract, seconded by Trustee Cheri, and unanimously approved.


New Business

FY2021-2022 Budget- Richard briefed the board the 2021-2022 Operating and Capital Budget. This included Educational, General, and Auxiliary operating funds. The total projected income is $17,089,487 with a total expenditures and net transfers of $16,905,266. This leaves a projected net gain of $184,221.

FY2021-2022 Tuition, Mandatory Fees, and Miscellaneous Fees- Richard stated there will be no increase to tuition or student fee rates.




Recommendation of Awards Committee- Chair Miller asked for a report of the recipients of this year’s commencement awards. Dr. Esters will present North Arkansas Regional Medical Center for their partnership with the vaccine clinics with the President’s award this year. Trustees will present former Trustee Bill Lovell with the Board of Trustees award.



Trustee Newman moved to adjourn the meeting. Trustee Earnest seconded the motion, which was unanimously approved.