Faculty Senate Elections and Voting

2024-25 Faculty Senate Candidate Statements

Candidates for Chair-Elect

Kimberly D. Acquaviva, PhD, MSW, CSE, FNAP
Betty Norman Norris Endowed Professor
School of Nursing

Hi! My name is Kim Acquaviva and I’m a faculty member in the School of Nursing.  Since joining the Senate, I’ve served on EXCO and the Academic Affairs Committee, co-chaired the Finance Committee, and represented the Senate on the Faculty Salary Study workgroup.  If elected, I’ll bring to the role a robust set of leadership and organizational skills in addition to five core values that guide me in everything I do: honesty, forthrightness, kindness, curiosity, and service.

One of the responsibilities of the Faculty Senate is to “advise the President and the Rector and Board of Visitors concerning educational and related matters affecting the welfare of the University.”   As tensions surrounding free speech, free inquiry, academic freedom, and DEI continue to mount, the Chair will need to build relationships with people across the political spectrum so the Senate can engage in constructive dialogue with the President, Rector, and BOV about these issues. I care deeply about undertaking this work.

Leading the Faculty Senate require a substantial time commitment in addition to solid organizational and leadership skills.  I have the time and skills needed to:

  • Plan and run Senate and EXCO meetings;
  • Work behind the scenes with EXCO and Senators to address issues;
  • Meet 1-on-1 with every Senator;
  • Make myself available 24/7;
  • Attend President’s Cabinet and leadership meetings;
  • Attend meetings with the Provost and his team;
  • Attend Chairs Summit meetings; and
  • Do whatever else is needed to ensure your voice is heard!

I appreciate your support and your vote. Thank you!

Jeri K. Seidman, PhD
Paul Goodloe McIntire Associate Professor of Commerce
McIntire School of Commerce

The Faculty Senate serves UVA and its faculty in many ways, from approving degree programs to providing Senators to serve on various committees. However, in my mind, these can be boiled down to two main purposes. First, we are an engine that advances faculty interests in quiet times. Second, rarely but importantly, we serve as both governance and a source of input for the University’s leaders in times of controversy or turmoil. Though one could easily argue that our roles during difficult times are our most important, I think the faculty we serve most appreciate us when we are able to use our collective power to make their everyday work lives better.

No job in the world is perfect. Whether it’s long hours, low pay, expectations that feel unreachable, lack of recognition, bureaucracy, or some other “rub,” every one of us has some part of our job we don’t love. Faculty Senate provides our faulty an avenue to change the university for the better. Through our collective and intentional listening, pain points become recognized as widespread problems rather than just isolated grumblings. With our collective energy talking with University leadership, widespread problems can be addressed more quickly. As a collective, we are able to initiate change in a way that individuals cannot.

While I am prepared to serve in the governance and advisory role should circumstances demand, I relish the possibility of leading us as we identify and advance ideas that make the work lives of our colleagues better. Bio

Candidates for EXCO At-Large Members

Election for 2 EXCO At-Large Members (seven at-large members elected from the Senate who serve for a three-year term) (no more than three members from the same school can serve as elected members for EXCO.)


Kay Neeley, PhD
Associate Professor
School of Engineering

The most significant assets I would bring to the executive committee of the Faculty Senate are forty-four years of experience as a member of the faculty, multifaceted appreciation of the University, and a commitment to building intellectual community. I have spent most of my career in the Department of Engineering and Society in the School of Engineering and Applied Science, where I have participated in interdisciplinary engineering research teams and taught courses in engineering ethics, communication, and cultural contexts of science and technology.  My research focuses on humanistic education for engineers and knowledge integration as a way of connecting academic expertise to concerns that arise outside of disciplinary contexts.

I have been a senator from 1998-2002 and from 2017 to the present, been a member of the Executive Committee for most of that time, and currently serve as co-chair of the Grievance Committee. I have been involved with several organizations and initiatives across Grounds, including Phi Beta Kappa, the Honor System Faculty Advisory Committee, the Raven Society, the Jefferson Scholars Program, and numerous University-wide assessment and planning committees. These experiences and my time as a Visiting Scholar at Cambridge taught me the value of intellectual community. The Faculty Senate is distinctively positioned to promote intellectual community as a means of transforming individual achievements into institutional strengths. I see service on the Executive Committee as an opportunity to both maintain the integrity of our academic mission and leverage our intellectual resources for the collective benefit of the University.

Andrew S. Pennock, PhD
Associate Professor of Public Policy
Batten School of Leadership and Public Policy

A proactive and productive faculty senate is a requirement for UVA to succeed in developing responsible citizen leaders and professionals; advance, preserve, and disseminate knowledge; and provide world-class patient care.

We need a faculty senate that advocates for faculty needs and perspectives, that stands with students and staff on important issues, and that works with the administration. Sometimes working with the administration means providing a faculty perspective, sometimes it means leaning in together on a shared problem, and sometimes it means pushing them. I want to be a part of an ExCo and faculty senate that can do all three. I’m running to serve on ExCo to help with sustain this work.

Over the last nine years I worked on a number of university wide committees and initiatives: the last three years on ExCo, six years on the AAC.  I have also served on the previous COACHE working group and co-chaired the Generative AI taskforce on teaching and learning.

In my work on the Senate and on the AAC, I’ve worked alongside faculty from every school. My experiences in LAM, training medical students with URiM (Under Represented in Medicine), and my experiences as a parent and patient at UVA-Health have given me an appreciation for the medical center’s role at UVA and the challenges faculty face there.

Over my tenure at UVA, it has been a joy to work with so many faculty members pursing our shared mission.  I hope you will consider voting for serve on ExCo.

Eric M. Ramírez-Weaver, PhD
Associate Professor of Medieval Art History
College of Arts and Sciences

In a polarizing world, the UVA Faculty Senate stabilizes discourse, promotes new programs, advocates for all bodies, encourages difference, and finds a path to compromise. These fundamental forms of measured collegial interaction define us as a body. I would continue to uphold these socially responsible political virtues if elected an EXCO Member at-large. Since I joined the Faculty Senate in 2021, I have served alongside many of you as the Chair of the DEI Committee. In that role, our committee has championed the interests of disenfranchised students, brought faculty and administrators together to forge new directions, and opened novel fora for public debate in which we learned from one another. EXCO plays a vital role in the interpretation of policy, liaises directly with the administration, and brings experts to share factual information on the Senate floor. As a result, thankfully, we may collectively assess our common goals, forge a positive vision, and address our needs or concerns with complete transparency. My pledge above all is to listen, and ensure that your voices are heard, so that we may all learn from you. In the coming months and years, diverse political opinion will continue to make us strong. If elected EXCO Member at-large, I will work with each of you to transcend the boundaries of our discrete Schools and individual specializations, promoting your opportunity to share your expertise with one another.

James D. Savage, PhD
Professor of Politics and Public Policy
College of Arts and Sciences

My name is James Savage, I am a professor of Politics and Public Policy, and I ask for your support to reelect me to EXCO.

My ambition for the Senate is that it should increasingly address the issues directly affecting the faculty, especially matters of financial compensation and support for research.  During my second term on EXCO, I cochaired the Senate’s Finance Committee.  Provost Ian Baucom met with us to review how UVA’s Financial Model affects all academic units.  If reelected, I will continue to serve on Finance to advocate for UVA’s support for faculty research and compensation, especially for women and minority faculty.  As a member of EXCO, I will make every effort to ensure that these matters are at the forefront of the Senate’s agenda for the coming academic year.

I support a representative Senate that promotes robust channels of communication between faculty and UVA administration. 

During my five years as chair of the College’s Budget & Development Committee, I called upon then-Dean Baucom to strengthen the College’s research competitiveness.  He responded by funding additional staff for the College’s research office, who assisted faculty in submitting federal grant applications.

My service to UVA includes ten years as Executive Assistant to Presidents Casteen and Sullivan for Federal Government Relations, and five years as Assistant Vice President for Research and Federal Relations.  During these fifteen years I successfully coordinated UVA federal government relations, thus resulting in increased federal funding for research and student financial aid.

Thank you for your consideration.

Jessica Sewell, PhD
Associate Professor, Urban & Environmental Planning
School of Architecture

My name is Jessica Sewell and I am a first-year senator. I would like to join the Executive Committee to further the project of enriching shared governance and making the university a more democratic and 21st-century institution. I have been engaged in this work within the School of Architecture, where I have been involved in drafting the school’s bylaws, revising general faculty policy, and writing the school’s DEI plan. There are several reasons why I will be a good addition to EXCO, beyond my passion for strengthening the university and the role of faculty within it.

I am a general faculty member and will bring an important point of view to EXCO. The experiences and concerns of general faculty overlap with those of TT faculty, but are not the same. In addition, I represent the A-School, which is important as policies created in the context of the College are often translated into our school without regard to our particularities. As the Faculty Senate represents all faculty, having an EXCO member who can speak to the particular concerns of general faculty and express the POV of a small school is important.

I have been a faculty member and an administrator at other institutions both in the US and overseas, which provides me with a breadth of understanding about how universities can operate. I found during my tenure on the A-School’s faculty council that experience in diverse institutions was essential to creating bylaws that made the school more democratic and inclusive.