Faculty/Staff Work/Life

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The Chancellor's Advisory Committee on Work and Family (CACWF)

Formerly the Chancellor's Advisory Committee on Dependent Care, CACDC

CACWF Committee Charge

The mission of the Chancellor's Advisory Committee on Work and Family is to promote an environment for faculty, staff, non-Senate academics, post docs, and students that enhances their ability to meet their responsibilities to the University and their responsibilities to children, elders, partners and others. CACWF does this by advising the Chancellor and other campus administrators on strategies, practices, programs, policies and benefits that further this goal.

Contacting the Committee

To reach the Chancellor's Advisory Committee on Work and Family, please contact the Co-Chairs at cacwf_chair@berkeley.edu, or see below for current Co-Chairs' contact info.

CACWF History and Accomplishments

This committee (formerly called Chancellor's Advisory Committee on Dependent Care) was formed in 1989. Over its history, CACWF has been effective in creating programs which support dependent care needs (e.g. the Elder Care program and CALcierge Office). CACWF has also advocated in support of the campus’s Early Childhood Education Program (ECEP) and made significant improvements on academic and staff personnel policies, as well as a wide range of other issues that affect family responsibilities.

In recognition of the fact that dependent care responsibilities of faculty and staff are not limited to child care, the Committee's charge was expanded in 1991 to include advising campus administration on broad issues of dependent care, including the care of ill or disabled family members and friends and aging parents. In the summer of 2013, The committee formally expanded its purview to include the work/life concerns of student parents, and the name of the committee was changed to Chancellor's Advisory Committee on Work and Family to reflect the broader range of issues that it focuses on.

Since its creation, the Committee's numerous accomplishments have had a wide impact on the well being of University employees. The Berkeley campus has received many awards for its efforts in addressing work/life issues.

Other Committee accomplishments include:

Academic Calendar

The Committee provides comments on proposed academic calendars each year in hopes of coordinating the start of the fall semester, President's birthday, and spring break with K-12 academic schedules. The President's birthday is now consistent with K-12 schools and the fall semester is commencing closer to Labor Day.

Academic and Staff Personnel Policies

A variety of academic and staff personnel policies have been improved over the last several years. These relate to paid and unpaid leave for pregnancy, parenting, and caring for ill family members. On the academic side these include tenure clock stoppage and active service/modified duties and flexible part-time positions. On the staff side, policies on sick leave have been expanded to include care for family members. A catastrophic leave-sharing program allows staff to donate vacation leave to those coworkers facing serious health problems, their own family's, requiring time off. FMLA has been implemented and is helpful to those requiring time off for their own or family's health problems, including paternity leave.

Backup Care Program for Faculty

UC Berkeley has partnered with Bright Horizons to offer all ladder rank faculty members and lecturers SOE back-up care when they need to be at work and their regular child or adult/elder care is unavailable. UCB ladder rank faculty and lecturers SOE are eligible to use up to 60 hours of back-up care per fiscal year (July 1 - June 30th). The current contract goes through June 30th, 2013.

Backup Care Program for Graduate and Undergraduate Students

Beginning Fall 2013, UC Berkeley has partnered with Bright Horizons to offer the Backup Care Advantage Program to undergraduate and graduate students when they need to be at work or school and their regular child or adult/elder care is unavailable. UCB undergraduate and graduate student are eligible to use up to 60 hours of back-up care per fiscal year  (July 1 -June 30th).


New mothers can retain some of their sick leave (if they have more than 22 days available) until after delivery while still qualifying for disability income pre-birth of a child. The Committee's additional advocacy efforts to OP have included support of the now available longterm care insurance and domestic partner benefits.

Breastfeeding Support Program

Lactation rooms have been established in various sites on campus, equipped with hospital grade breast pumps for nursing mothers to pump during the work day. In addition, individual breast pumps are sold through University Health Services/Health*Matters at below market value and a lactation consultant offers a training session to moms at least once a year.

Child Care

A campus survey and report with recommendations was published and approved in 1989. The Committee continues to address the recommendations not yet completed. Child Care Services and the Institute of Human Development sponsor a full-day, year-round pre-school program for 24 children of faculty and staff at the Harold E. Jones Child Study Center. This was expanded to 48 children of faculty and staff in 1996. With the support of the Space Assignments and Capital Improvements (SACI) Committee, this Committee has worked with Deans and Directors to identify space and develop plans for infant and toddler childcare programs in existing campus buildings and in buildings with planned renovations. In 1999, at the Chancellor's initiation, an infant/toddler center for 24 faculty and staff children opened. The University has matched Office of the President's funding towards the development of a new early childhood education facility, opening January 2007, to serve 74 children of faculty, staff and students.

Counseling, Referrals, Workshops, Support Groups, Brown Bag Lunches

CARE Services for Faculty and Staff provides all of the above for no charge. The topics include parenting and adult dependent care/elder care.

Elder Care/Adult Dependent Care

In conjunction with Professor Andrew Scharlach of the School of Social Welfare, the Committee conducted a major needs assessment survey of faculty and staff adult dependent care/elder care in Spring 1992. The Committee issued 23 policy and program recommendations on the basis of these survey results which were in turn accepted by the Chancellor. In 1997 an elder care counselor in CARE Services was funded to provide counseling, information, referral, workshops, groups and other programming to faculty and staff caregivers. In addition, an elder care e-mail digest was started in 1998 for sharing of resources and support by caregivers in the campus community. The elder care program received funds from the Academic Geriatric Resource Program for a special series on dementia in 1999-2000, and for additional activities in 2002.

Flexible Work Arrangements, Including Telecommuting

In April 1991,  Chancellor Tien sent a memo to Deans, Directors, Department Chairs, and Administrative Officers promoting the use of alternative work schedules to ease conflicts between work and home responsibilities. Since that time, the campus personnel office has conducted a series of forums on Flexible Work Arrangements for managers and staff. As of 1997, the campus adopted a specific telecommuting policy. Flexible work arrangements have been supported by Chancellor Berdahl as indicated in his introduction to the Guide and in other memos he has sent to campus.

Fundraising for New Child Care Facilities and Scholarships

In 1993, proposals were submitted to the Campus Development Office for the expansion of campus child care facilities for faculty and staff and for underwriting the operating costs of this quality child care to make it affordable. Though not accepted into Campaign 2001, efforts are still underway to seek scholarship funding for children in the infant /toddler and pre-school programs.

Parental Leave policy for baby bonding

Effective June 1, 2010, UC staff will be allowed to use up to 30 days of sick leave to care for and bond with a newborn, adopted or foster child under a new leave provision. CACDC and CAC-LGBT were long-time advocates for this policy, which is part of the updated Absence from Work policy that consolidated several existing leave provisions into a single, comprehensive absence policy.

Recognition for Efforts

The Berkeley campus has received many awards for its efforts in addressing the work/family conflicts. Included are awards from One Small Step, the Bay Area employer work/family organization and the US Department Of Labor- Women's Bureau. The Excellence in Management Awards in 1998 were based on managers' support for their staff in the balance of their work/life issues. The individuals on the team that was responsible for the Guide for Balancing Work and Family received Distinguished Service Cash Awards.

Sittercity Benefit for Faculty & Staff

Effective January 1, 2012, Sittercity provides UC employees with access to local, pre-screened caregivers and the tools (including reviews, references and background checks) to review and select the caregiver of their choice. The cost of membership is paid by the University. Employees pay for the services of the caregivers they select.

Summer Youth Programs

Recreational Sports and the Lawrence Hall of Science were the first departments to offer a full day program (combining science and sports/recreational activities) with supervised transportation between the two sites. Now, additional campus programs are working together to offer full day programs. Each year a listing of campus summer programs are published in the Berkeleyan to facilitate faculty and staff planning. In addition, campus programs are offering programs up to Labor Day and during spring break to meet the schedule needs of working parents.

Student Dependent Care Issues

The Committee identified some of the comparable issues facing student parents and caregivers and recommended the development of a "sister" committee, coordinated with CACDC, to address those issues. A student parent workgroup was formed with a report with recommendations put forth Fall, 1997 and a survey was conducted. A new graduate student policy similar to tenure clock stoppage was implemented Spring, 1998.

UC Systemwide Efforts

Members of the Committee participated on the 1991 Universitywide Task Force on Dependent Care. A systemwide conference was held Fall, 1998 on work/family/life issues, with the Berkeley campus assuming a leadership role in conference planning. There is a work/life listserve and annual meetings for work/life professionals from all of the campuses. The Sloan Foundation funded UC Family Edge Project is a multi-year systemwide initiative to adress faculty work/family challenges.

Work/Life Website 

CACDC published "A Guide for Working Parents"  in 1992. The Guide for Balancing Work and Family included information on childcare and elder/adult dependent care, as well as family friendly policies and benefits. The CACDC website went on-line in the fall of 1997. The updated website is called "Work/Life: A Guide for the UC Berkeley Campus" and provides UC Berkeley faculty, staff, and students with an overview of existing campus work/life policies, programs, and resources designed to support our campus community in balancing their work, family and personal lives. 

CACWF 2016-2017 Membership List




Contact Information

Larissa Charnsangavej, Graduate Student Life Specialist

Graduate Division

(510) 642-4071

Tomie Lenear,
Student Parent Counselor

Student Parent Center




Contact Information

Catherine "KT" Albiston, 


(510) 642-0493

Lara Buchak, Professor


(610) 764-9102

Dan Chatman, Assistant Professor

City and Regional Planning

(510) 642-2454

Bonnie Cherry, Undergraduate Student

Interdisciplinary Studies

(510) 529-1604

Nancy Donovan, Staff

Berkeley Law, Faculty Support

(510) 642-0503

Breanna Ford , Graduate Student 

Nutritional Sciences & Toxicology (510) 967-1077

Karie Frasch, Director 

Office of Faculty Equity and Welfare (510) 967-1077

Kevis Goodman,

English (510) 684-2695

Alison Gopnik, Professor


(510) 642-2752

Allison Hall Ramos, Non-Faculty Academic Appointee

Fall Program for Freshman, UC Berkeley Extension

(510) 653-0374

Jennifer King, Graduate Student

School of Information


Abby Kroken, Postdoctoral Scholar

School of Optometry

(510) 642-0511

Jessica Lee, Attorney, Title IX Legal Fellow Center for Economic & Family Security, Boalt School of Law, UC Hastings College of the Law

(415) 565-4873

Michele Rabkin, Associate Director Berkeley Connect (510) 664-4182 micheler@berkeley.edu
Vesna Rodic,
French  (510) 642-2712 

Marta Vuckovic, Postdoctoral Scholar

Nutritional Sciences & Toxicology

(510) 643-0460

Joan Walker, Professor

Civil and Environmental Engineering

(510) 642-6897 

Administrative Appointee

Mary-Ann Spencer Cogan, Chief of Staff

Residential and Student Services Programs (RSSP)

(510) 643-6144

Maureen Kelly, Elder Care Counselor

University Health Services

(510) 643-3430

Tomie Lenear, Student Parent Couselor Student Parent Center tleneasjr@berkeley.edu
Rusi Mchedlishvili, Graduate Student Parent Advocacy Project Director (Partner of Graduate Student) Graduate Assembly (646) 872-6055

Karen Patchell, Be Well at Work Administrative Officer

University Health Services

(510) 642-5689

Janet Suko, HR Benefits Program Coordinator

Human Resources

(510) 642-7883

Administrative Liaison



Jenny Kwon, Special Projects Administrator

California Hall

(510) 664-7458

The Committee would like to acknowledge Professor Judith Gruber, founder of the committee, who passed away June 2005.