2016 Elections

This year, we will elect a Vice-President/President-Elect and a Secretary. The nominees for each office are:

  • Dawn Kenney (Vice-President/President-Elect)
  • Mark Leany (Vice-President/President-Elect)
  • Brittany Esswein-Rice (Secretary)
  • Kay Cooley (Secretary)

Candidates’ statements are below.

Both positions serve three-year terms; the Vice-President succeeds to President in the second year and Immediate Past President in the third. The duties of the officers can be found in section 5 of the bylaws. There are no restrictions on who can serve, including past officers, except that the current Past President is not permitted to be elected as Vice-President. Officers take office following the annual business meeting.

Ballots are available online. Ballots must be submitted by 11:59 PM MDT on October 7, 2016 to be valid. Under the RMAIR bylaws, a quorum is “at least 20 RMAIR members from five of the eleven Rocky Mountain states or provinces.” The board may extend the as necessary to ensure a valid election result. The Past President will informally notify the winners and announce the results as soon thereafter as possible, and officially report the results of the election at the annual business meeting.

Nominees for Vice-President/President-Elect

Dawn Kenney, Associate Director of Institutional Research, Central New Mexico Community College
I have been a member of RMAIR for 20 years and have seen a lot of change. RMAIR has afforded me a great opportunity with professional development, networking, and friendship. You all were the first ones I met after I joined Institutional Research. As President I would like to keep RMAIR the open group they are as well as see us embrace new thought and change in Institutional Research. Of course we do this already as we are RMAIR — and are awesome!

Mark Leany, Senior Research Analyst, Utah Valley University
My name is Mark Leany, and I am running for Vice-President/President-Elect.

My education includes a B.S. in Statistics/Computer Science, an M.A. in Communications, and continued education in courses such as Business Intelligence tools and computer programming. I have many years experience as a programmer, computer specialist, analyst, and have also won awards as a writer and innovator. I have been a Senior Research Analyst at UVU for 9 years. As a member of RMAIR (and AIR) since 2008, I have taught workshops and presentations at the annual forums of both organizations over the years (including co-presenting last year’s RMAIR Best Presentation, which my director and I repeated at the recent AIR conference).

As a RMAIR officer, I would work to continue the networking and other benefits of the organization, and also seek out opportunities to better communicate what RMAIR does. One specific issue would be to identify and provide advance communication of dates and deadlines which would be of interest to the RMAIR community (including RMAIR, AIR, and other issues helpful to our membership).

Also, as institutional researchers, the tools we use (Excel, Argos, Tableau, etc.) can be extremely helpful in helping us get our message across to our audiences. In addition to teaching Tableau workshops at the forums, Tim Stanley and I are working with the AIR administrators to provide other educational opportunities for members throughout the year in the form of smaller videos. I believe that RMAIR can work with AIR to promote access as well as to influence and create content.

I do ask that you vote for me but, even if you don’t, at least vote in the upcoming election. I look forward to seeing you at the RMAIR Conference in October.

Nominees for Secretary

Brittany Esswein-Rice, Associate Director of Performance Improvement & Decision Support, Central New Mexico Community College
I have been in Institutional Research at Central New Mexico Community College for five years. I was a member of the team that developed the 2013 RMAIR strategic plan. As secretary, I would make sure that all meetings are documented to the fullest, in a manner that is easy to read and accessible to the membership. I will also work to maintain accurate records of current RMAIR membership, allowing for the organization to foster more participation in conferences and voting. Additionally, as secretary, I will work to maintain historical records of membership and activities.

Kay Cooley, Planning and Improvement Assistant, Western Wyoming Community College
Because my chosen field is Administrative Assistant and I’ve been serving in that capacity for 20+ years, I feel I am qualified to serve as RMAIR Secretary. I attained my “Certified Administrative Professional” certification from the International Association of Administrative Professionals (IAAP) in 2006. In the past, I’ve served as secretary for multiple boards/committees, including the Colorado, Montana, Wyoming Division of the International Association of Administrative Professionals, Western Horizon’s Chapter of IAAP, and Western Wyoming Community College Paraprofessional Association, to name a few.

Four years ago, Institutional Research duties were added to our office. Since that time, I’ve been functioning as the Data Collection Specialist. During the last four years, I’ve been trained on our campus reporting tool, I’m the IPEDS keyholder for our institution, and I’ve taken a course from the AIR Data and Decisions Academy. As part of my duties, I complete national, state, and on campus reporting projects.

Because I’m fairly new to the field of Institutional Research and RMAIR, my main focus for the year would be to educate myself on how RMAIR functions and to help promote the organization and its annual conference. The annual conference has been instrumental in helping me navigate and understand the world of IR. I’ve learned very valuable information at the RMAIR conferences that I haven’t gotten anywhere else. I’ve also networked with other IR professionals and value that connection.

In short, I would be honored to serve as Secretary for the RMAIR organization this next year.