The Clerk of the Faculty sets the agenda and presides at faculty meetings. They also work with the Recording Clerk on minutes of the Faculty Meeting. The term is one year, with a possible one-year extension.
Terms in early years are not clear. It appears that until 1980 the clerk assumed office in winter term/semester. Thus Warren Staebler, for example, became clerk in January 1963 and concluded his term in December 1964. This was changed in 1980 so that terms coincided with the academic year. Before 1967, some clerks served three years.
See here for a list of all Recording Clerks of the Faculty since 1956.
Prior to 1956, Faculty Meeting had a “Chairman” and “Secretary” instead of a Clerk and Recording Clerk. The Chairman was the President of Earlham up until around 1952, when the Academic Dean, David E. Henley, took over the role.
During the November 14, 1955 Faculty Meeting, the faculty decided, “On an experimental basis for the remainder of this [academic] year … to place the conduct of faculty meetings under a ‘Presiding Clerk’, with a ‘Recording Clerk’, after the manner of traditional Friends Meeting." Part of the justification was that the change would "expedite business and free the Dean [David E. Henley] to speak for or against proposals without the responsibility of also conducting the meeting."
The first Clerk was James Thorp, and the first Recording Clerk was James McDowell.*
*Faculty Meeting Minutes, November 14, 1955
*Helen Hole became Earlham's first Provost in 1970.
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