Chapter 1 – The Board of Regents
Article III of the Constitution of the State of Iowa vests the legislative authority of the State in the General Assembly (G.A.). It delegates broad authority to the G.A. to "provide for the educational interest of the state in any . . . manner that to them shall seem best and proper" (Article IX, Section 15), and it establishes a state university -- the University of Iowa (Article IX, Section 11). In executing its delegated authority, the G.A. established a Board of Trustees (now the Board of Regents, State of Iowa) to govern the State University. It also adopted Iowa Code Chapter 262, which charges the Regents with governing the State University of Iowa, the Iowa State University, the University of Northern Iowa, the Iowa Braille and Sight Saving School, the State School for the Deaf, the Oakdale campus, and the Center for Disabilities and Development (formerly the University Hospital School).
The Board of Regents consists of nine members, one of whom must be a full-time student enrolled at one of the three state universities at the time of appointment, who are appointed by the Governor and subject to confirmation by the Senate (IC 262.1). The officers of the Board include the president and the executive director (BRPM 1.1). The staff of the board, headed by the executive director, are responsible for providing staff assistance to the Board, reviewing and analyzing institutional proposals, and preparing recommendations to the Board (BRPM 1.8).
The members of the Board are:
- Michael Richards, MD, President (2016–21)
- Patty Cownie, President Pro Tem (2015–21)
- David Barker (2019–25)
- Sherry Bates (2017–23)
- Nancy Boettger (2017–23)
- Milt J. Dakovich (2019–25)
- Nancy Dunkel (2017–23)
- Rachael Johnson (2015–21)
- Jim Lindenmayer (2019–25)
Addresses, telephone numbers, and biographical information are available from the Board of Regents website.
The Board is responsible for the unique role of the Regents universities to provide stewardship for quality teaching, research, and service to the citizens of Iowa, including undergraduate, graduate, and professional programs in a variety of fields. The Board is responsible for ensuring quality programs for the deaf and visually impaired at the pre-collegiate level. In all areas of responsibility, the Board is responsible for appropriate and effective articulation with other sectors of postsecondary, secondary, and elementary education in the state. In addition, the Board's responsibilities include ongoing coordination between and among the Regent institutions, and between the Regent institutions and other organizations and agencies responsible for related educational functions. Together with other boards and agencies responsible for aspects of education, such as the Department of Education and the Iowa College Aid Commission, the Board of Regents is responsible for inter agency coordination and overall planning for postsecondary and special education in the state. The Board establishes and coordinates the missions and visions of each Regent institution and strives to enable that they, in concert with Iowa's other educational institutions, meet the educational needs of Iowans. The Board challenges its institutions to become the best system of public education in the United States through the unique teaching, research, and outreach programs established for each.
In its role as the Board of Trustees for the University of Iowa Hospitals & Clinics (UIHC), the Board is responsible for reviewing periodic reports on planning, programs, operation, and finance, and for governing the UIHC (IC 262.7). As provided in the bylaws approved for the UIHC, the Chief Executive Officer of the UIHC shall submit through the President of the university reports to the Board of Regents in its capacity as the Board of Trustees for the UIHC at least quarterly. (See also BRPM 1.2).
The powers and duties of the Board include: developing Regent-wide strategic plans and legislative programs; approving institutional missions, institutional strategic plans, educational policies, academic programs, institutional budgets, personnel policies, and tuition and student fee rates; for each university, electing a President, Treasurer, and Secretary, professors, instructors, officers, and employees, and fixing their compensation; making rules for admission to and for the government of, the institutions under its control; managing and controlling the property belonging to the institutions under its control; granting leaves of absence; making rules relating to the classification of students as residents or non-residents; and performing all other acts necessary and proper for the execution of the powers and duties conferred by law upon it (IC 262.9; IAC 11.1(7)). (See also II-32 Office of Government Relations.)
For the purpose of implementing and administering collective bargaining pursuant to Chapter 20 of the Code of Iowa, the Board acts as the exclusive representative of the state with respect to faculty, scientific, and other professional staff employed by institutions governed by the Board (IC 8A).
While the overall authority to govern the Regent institutions is fully vested in the Board of Regents, the Board has delegated appropriate authority to the chief executive officer of each institution. Institutional governance structures have been developed, with Regent oversight of operations and management. The Board has delegated authority to approve agreements and contracts to the Chief Executive Officer, and authorized further delegation of this authority (IAC 8.2(3), 12.5). (See also V-6.1 Contracting Authority.)
As a state agency, the Board of Regents has statutory authority under the Iowa Administrative Procedure Act (IC 17A) to make policy through adoption of administrative rules in furtherance of its statutory mandate to govern the state's universities. These administrative rules are published for public comment in the Iowa Administrative Bulletin, and, once adopted, they become part of the Iowa Administrative Code. The other source for Regent policies is the Board of Regents Policy Manual.