Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences at the University of Colorado Boulder

January Monthly Meeting


  • Mistia Zuckerman, CMC chair (NSIDC)
  • Alessandro Franchin, CMC co-chair (CSL) (remote via zoom)
  • Jonathan Kofler, CMC Secretary (GML)
  • Carrie Wall (NCEI) (remote via zoom)
  • Eric Adamson (SWPC)
  • Michael Toy (GSL)
  • Eric James (GSL)
  • Nathan Campbell (CIRES Admin)
  • Lucia Harop (Admin)
  • Andrew Badger (Main Campus)
  • Dawn Umpleby (Earth Lab /NC CASC)
  • Mimi Hughes (PSL)
  • Amanda Morton (Outreach)
  • Thomas Legard (GML)
  • Michael Toy (GSL)

1/14/2019: Location: NSIDC-RL2-155

Pre-meeting discussion:

- future meetings.  Kathmandu on 29th street mall has a room. The Taj is a possibility too.

Meeting called to order at 12:29 pm

CU Family Housing Update

Alessandro reports that he did not prepare a statement to give to Waleed yet, but some work has been done.  Nate started an email with chain to Mike Macfarin, a post-doc on campus who went to extreme lengths to get information including statistics from housing.  The responses were matter-of-fact.  Mike understands the problem limited-term housing creates for some foreign and early career employees and said they are considering changing the term. John Rush provided information about early career pay scale that can be put together with average rent (when that is compiled).  All parties are aware of the problem and no convincing needs to happen.   Results of informal CMC cluster surveys are compiled in a google document and available to CMC members.  Lucia asks if Ale has spoken with Susan Sullivan about this because the issue could affect the diversity of our staff.  He did informally at the beginning, but didn’t follow up, and will loop her back in so that she can provide her input.

Focus Groups

Mistia added this agenda item.  After the culture survey Susan Sullivan introduced focus groups to glean more information than might not have been gleaned in the multiple choice culture survey questionnaire.   She is starting with 3 women focus groups and 3 other focus groups located throughout CIRES to talk about issues specific to those groups.  Lucia raises the question of whether the CMC would want to add focus groups.  Mimi proposes that specific clusters could have their own focus groups.  There could be a focus group for people who are affected by housing.  Concluded that it would be valuable to invite Susan Sullivan to the next CMC meeting.  Action item: Mistia will invite Susan to the next CMC meeting.

2019 Outstanding Performance Awards (OPA) (OPA Chair)

Nate: It is time to send out an email reminder about the OPA’s and test the online application to make sure it is working.  Mimi recommends a contingency plan for if the govt shutdown continues. Discussion: The deadline for application submission could be pushed back if the shutdown continues, but If the deadline gets pushed back, it might be difficult to be able to produce the physical award in time for the Rendezvous, but at least the announcement could be made at the Rendezvous and the award given later.  Carrie Wall: we would like to have some more guidelines such as word count, and examples of good applications from the past (what is expected).  Lucia says that people ask for examples all the time. Mimi: how far back to reach for examples.  Lucia: applications can be resubmitted so that should be considered when choosing examples.  Mimi: If possible ask to include recommendation letters as examples too, which will require permissions. Action item:Carrie Wall will get examples and word counts for field entries to Nate and he will publish it on the website. Mimi: a CIRES person can nominate someone now, but can’t get needed input from the feds.  Verbiage addressing this issue should be included on the application site.  Katy Human.  Action item: OPA chair will send out a draft announcement for approval today with the intention of submitting the approved message to the CIRES message center for distribution on Friday.

2019 Rendezvous

The Rendezvous is scheduled for May 17.  Nate will be meeting on Friday with Dawn and Linda about the rendezvous.  After some discussion it is decided that the gender pronoun labels will be included at the check in table instead of at a separate table. The tent on the terrace will be used as usual for the poster session, unless work is being done on the terrace in which case it will need to be relocated, possibly to the north dining hall.

CIRES Mentoring Program Update(Mimi)

The mentoring program committee met with BJ Thompson.  He is happy with the mentoring committees proposal, but he brought up some things.  He didn’t like verbiage about “receiving help when discriminated against or harassed” in the purpose section.  Should mentors be responders/mandatory reporters?  There is a meeting later today with Nate to discuss construction of website for the program, software for matching of mentees and mentors, and hiring a student to help complete those tasks.  Christine Weidemeyer confirmed that Waleed is still in support of the program and there will be money available to pay a student (once the shutdown is lifted).


MIstia reports that she is working on an onboarding procedure for people starting at NSIDC because some aspects have not worked well in the past.  For example, new employees may not have an email address right away after they start.. She wants to make specific onboarding process for NSIDC, for example a scheduled calendar, and list of items for supervisors. She spoke with CU HR and found out that they are on board with on boarding and BJ would be able help with this.  Nate: BJ is working with the onboarding process for CIRES that has items specific to where they are working (main campus, NOAA, SWPC, etc).  The on campus resources are great if you are on campus, but it may not be relevant at other locations.  Dawn says that Earth lab has an onboarding process in place. Nate: one thing BJ is including in onboarding process is a half day of explaining what CIRES is.  His hope is to make everyone aware of what the various parts of CIRES are.  Lucia likes the idea of that information being introduced at a later date, not right away as new employees may already be overwhelmed with other details in the beginning.  Dawn: Earth Lab - a benefits meeting was helpful.   Many people at her organization didn’t know anything about the CIRES organization as a whole.  Lucia: The onboarding process would be a good opportunity for admin integration.  Action Item: Mistia will add onboarding as a CMC agenda item and invite BJ to discuss that at a future CMC meeting.  

Government shutdown(Mistia)

Discussion ensued about whether guidance communications will be coming out in an email soon, and whether a town hall would be helpful.   Questions were raised about if the shutdown continues, how long will funding and pay continue for different CIRES groups.  Mistia: there is work space available at NSIDC.  Lucia - is there another note admin news coming out? People are expected to work full time. Take trainings.   Feds are forbidden to work.  Jon: for some people whose work requires lab space and equipment to work on, it is very difficult to work because their equipment is on site in the NOAA building. Included in an email resources of places people can work would be helpful.  Amanda:  nobody took them up on office space in the last shutdown.  Q: Are we supposed to use email?    Mistia:  The deadline passed for career track promotion during the shutdown yet Feds are forbidden to work 


Executive meeting: No December meeting

CIRES Fellows Meeting There was a fellows meeting in December, but 
Antonietta is not at the meeting to report on it.

Meeting is adjourned 154 pm.


Monday, January 14, 2019
3:00 pm


  • CMC


  • CIRES employees


  • Meeting