The United Academics Constitution and Bylaws establishes eight standing committees, chaired by members of the Executive Council. All full members of United Academics are encouraged to participate on the committees. If you are interested in participating, please email the chair of the committee for information on how to get involved.


Nathan Whalen is the Executive Vice President and the Chair of the Collective Bargaining Agreement. He is excited about bargaining.


Heather Quarles is the chair of the Grievance and Contract Administration Committee [GCAC]. If you have questions about your rights under the Collective Bargaining Agreement or University policy, Heather and the Committee are happy to help. You can click the circle to the right to email Heather. Not all problems or situations fall under the CBA, of course, but our role is to help members determine whether they do have a grievance, to advise members accordingly, and, when appropriate, pursue action on behalf of the member. If you want to know how to file a grievance, you can read about that process here. The Grievance and Contract Administration Committee is charged, through the UA Constitution and Bylaws with many duties:
  • Fields requests by UA members to investigation suspected violations of the CBA by the University of Oregon
  • Connects members with stewards who can represent members and investigate suspected violations of the CBA
  • Helps members secure due process in CBA-related investigations and a fair and impartial hearing by relevant University personnel
  • Interprets the CBA with respect to cases that come before the Committee
  • Recommends next steps in the grievance process based on a review of the case
  • Proposes amendments to the CBA to better serve members with grievance and contract administration


talk with joe small white borderBill Harbaugh is the Chair of the Finance Committee. Bill is also the Treasurer of United Academics. Professor Harbaugh has taught Economics at UO since 1995. His research uses methods from experimental economics and neuroeconomics to study charitable giving and the economic behavior of children. If you have any questions about the UA budget, feel free to click the button above and Bill will be happy to help.


Avinnash Tiwari is the Chair of the Politics Committee.

As always, we are committed to making education in this state and on our campus equitable, especially for those with limited access to resources and opportunities. We will continue to support K-12 initiatives that support teachers and students, ultimately giving young people an opportunity for higher education that won’t be a financial burden that weighs heavily against the benefits of higher ed. 

Of course these dreams require action, and not always direct. For example, this election season we must consider the specific challenges that impact our communities. How could we ever imagine growing the diversity of our faculty and staff in a state where de facto and de jure racial profiling could become all too real for people of color in this state (No on 105)? How could we say we support the women of our University if Measure 106 would drastically cut health care for women (No on 106)? And back locally, we cannot forget (or wish away) our institution’s long history of systemic and institutional power whereby marginalized groups have been and will continue to be under-represented, under-resourced, and under-valued, despite and because of our commitments to both excellence and diversity. 

And as for more direct action, we are continually vigilant on finding ways to bring faculty and student interests forefront in the minds and decisions of our Board of Trustees, as well as fighting for an honest, open, and equitable relationship with the UO Foundation. The long-term engagement with PERS must also continue if we want our University to actually be a home for our current and future generations of scholars.

Especially after the Janus v. AFSCME decision, we are particularly excited that our membership has grown. We hope to strengthen our community even more by forging stronger and new connections with our students, community groups, and of course, all of you faculty. 


Eleanor Wakefield is an instructor in the English department and composition program. She began teaching at the UO in 2010 as a graduate student in English, continuing as a pro tem and now career instructor. During her time as a graduate student and employee, she acted as a steward and VP of Grievances for the GTFF. She has also served a steward from English for UA and chair of the Representative Assembly. Her scholarly work is on poetry and poetics, especially 19th and 20th century American formal verse. 


David Woken is the History and Latin American Studies Librarian at the UO Libraries, building the library's collections for History, Spanish and Portuguese, Latin American Studies, African Studies, and Medieval Studies as well as providing research and instructional support for faculty across these disciplines and programs. He is also the curator of the archival collections on Latinx history housed in UO Libraries' Special Collections and University Archives, particularly the records of the Oregon farmworker union Pineros y Campesinos Unidos del Noroeste (Northwest Tree Planters and Farmworkers United, PCUN). Prior to becoming a librarian he studied Latin American labor history, focusing on the anarchist militants of early twentieth-century Argentina. His professional interests include the use of critical pedagogy with archival collections, open access publishing in the global south, and the history of Oregon's Latinx community.