With the new academic year starting, Austin Community College will talk to the incoming 2020-21 employee association presidents. We will ask each of them a few questions to learn more about them professionally and personally.
The 2020-21 Full-Time Faculty Senate President is Dr. Wayne Butler, Business, Government & Technical Communications department chair and professor.
When did you start working at ACC and in what role?
I started as an adjunct in Business, Government, and Technical Communications in summer 2003. I became full time fall 2017, and department chair spring 2018.
What additional role(s) at the college have you held (if any)?
Member: Faculty Center for Teaching and Learning Advisory Group
Liberal Arts Faculty Coordinator: Summer 2015 - Summer 2017
What inspired you to run for president?
I was asked to run as a result of my work on the FCAG and Pathways Faculty Coordinator. I accepted the opportunity as a way to "give back" as I near the end of a long career in education. I am a fan of Theodore Roosevelt's quote: "It is not the critic who counts; ... The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena." Of course, today, I'd revise the quote to reference "all" in the arena!
What are your goals for this year in your role as president?
My goal as FTFS president is to ensure the full-time faculty voice plays a significant role in scripting the future for our students, ACC, and ourselves. We strive to strengthen our influence at the current tables we're at via Shared Governance, get seats at more tables, and leverage the power of those seats at the tables to drive student success and pursue ACC's strategic goals, all while protecting the primacy of faculty in student success and professional autonomy. We have a challenging year in front of us, and the number one goal is to work in partnership with ACC leadership to ensure student success during these challenging times.
Where did you grow up? What was it like?
I was born in New York City and reared in the suburbs north of NYC near West Point in the Hudson Valley. I lived in a subdivision built by a Texas developer. All the streets were named after Texas cities or landmarks. My home was in Alamo Court, so little wonder I ended up in Texas. As a typical teen, of course, I wanted nothing more than to get the heck out of there. In retrospect, I now recognize the central benefit of growing up in the NYC suburbs was the access to the best the world had to offer. You could wake up and within an hour or two ski the Catskills, eat a 5-star meal at a gourmet bistro or the best "dirty water dog" or "slice" in the world, get lost among the skyscrapers in awe of humankind's ambition, see world-class entertainment on and off Broadway, catch rock concerts at The Garden (Zeppelin '77 was epic), take in games at the cathedral of American baseball — Yankee Stadium, or be on a beach at the Jersey Shore.
What do you "geek out" about?
Genealogy. I've discovered family lines going back to the Pilgrims, 10+ generations of ancestors in Wales, Scotland, Ireland, and England, as well as early 20th-century immigrants from Puerto Rico, Cuba, Spain, and the Canary Islands. My passion is driven by the desire to connect the dead with the not yet born, to situate those ancestors in history, and to add life to shoeboxes full of black and white dog-eared photos by documenting their stories, their struggles, and their triumphs. What makes me a "geek" are the family road trip Google maps I make of ancestral addresses to guide us around the City, sort of a ground-level view of New York how the ancestors experienced it.
Do you have a motto, mantra, or personal philosophy?
"Leave it better than you found it."