January 3, 1962
Regarding your inquiry of December 20, the President's Administrative Advisory Conference on April 13, 1956 agreed that
"1. Barriers should not be placed in the way of staff members wishing to run for elective public office in the status of private citizens but the University should seek only to protect itself from involvement in partisan politics.
2. Faculty members should be permitted to become candidates for elective public office while holding active salaried status, providing they can demonstrate that such candidacy will not in any way interfere with their University duties and that every precaution will be taken to avoid involving the name of the University in the campaign. However, leave of absence must be taken if candidacy results in serious interference with University duties during either the primary or final stages of campaigning. The Conference agreed candidacy cannot be undertaken while a faculty member is on sabbatical leave of absence.
3. A faculty member who wins election to public office should be granted the usual privilege of leave without salary for one year, with a possibility of renewal for one year, where such leave is clearly in the interest of the University and the individual's duties can be discharged adequately by others on a temporary basis. It would be expected, however, that if a faculty member were elected to a full-time job he would resign his University position unless the above circumstances existed."
Although the President did not then endorse and proclaim the advice given him, it still seems sensible to me, and I should be ready to endorse it now if we need an official policy.
Regarding the special problem of a faculty member serving in the State Legislature, there would, in my judgment, be a "conflict of interest" sufficient to make such concurrent service unwise, and perhaps even illegal. It would be in the best interest of the institution for one thus elected to resign from the University, his resignation to be accepted "without prejudice" to reappointment upon termination of his legislative office.
Replying to your last question leaves of absence do not affect the tenure of faculty members, nor do they affect their retirement privileges, except, of course, that The Regents do not make retirement contributions when they are not paying salary.