University of Wisconsin–Madison

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the logic behind the districting?

For what does DRC stand?
Districting and Representation Committee

Why is knowing my district important?
If I have any Academic Staff governance issues and I know my district, I can find other people who are in my district and discuss these issues. I can also determine the district representative. Furthermore, being in the appropriate district makes it more likely that others in my district share my concerns and issues, thus providing a unified voice.

Why don't I ever hear from my representative?
Most reps contact their constituents via email. You may not have your email address listed in the staff directory. The Districting and Representation Committee provides the secretary of the academic staff lists of members for each district. She, in turn, forwards the appropriate list to each representative. However, we get the information from the campus directory, so if you don't list your email address, your representative won't be able to contact you. Remember that you can always contact your representative yourself. You can find your representative by getting a list of members of your district. That list is available on the Districting and Representation Committee web page.

Why does my district include people whose jobs or locations are so different from mine?
Some districts are unified by title, and some are unified by division/department. Some departments have physical locations that are all over the map.

Why are the districts limited to 90 people?
First of all, the limit is not hard and fast. The Academic Staff Policies and Procedures specify a population range based on a percentage (.6% min, 1.2% max) of the total Academic Staff population on campus; this is currently 50 to 118 members. However, we try to keep the districts at about 90, as this allows the group to have a stronger voice in the Academic Staff Assembly. Each representative has only one vote, regardless of how many people are within that district. So if a group of 100 people were to be placed in one district, they'd have just one vote. But if they were placed in two districts, they'd have two.

Why are the data on the DRC web page out of date?

The data must go through several steps before it shows up the web page. Let's suppose you change jobs towards the end of August. Payroll has to change your job title in the computer system, which takes a little time. We get our data every two weeks. It's possible your job change won't show up in the early September data, so we won't know about your job change until we next grab the data, which would be the middle of September. The changes would be added to our web site at that time. In other words, a job change at the end of August doesn't show up on our web site until the middle of September - maybe even longer if payroll needs more time to make the change.

Who are academic staff?
Academic staff are those unclassified employees who are not faculty. Faculty are defined in Wisconsin statutes as those university employees with a title of professor, associate professor, assistant professor, or instructor. So if you are an unclassified employee, and don't have a one of those four titles, you are academic staff. Academic staff include a wide range of titles such as researcher, dean, scientist, clinical professor, lecturer as well as other non faculty titles. For futher information, see the Unclassified Title Guidelines. Both faculty and academic staff have a voice in shared governance of the University as defined by Wisconsin statutes, Section 36.09 (4m).

When are changes in districts done?

The districting data, which include changes in districts for individuals, is updated every two weeks. At that time, the data available on the web is updated, and lists of members of each district (including email addresses) are made available to the Secretary of the Academic Staff.

What's the URL for the main page for the DRC site?

What is the DRC?
The DRC is a standing committee of the Academic Staff Assembly (ASA). The DRC consists of 6 members and these members are elected by the ASA . The DRC’s responsibilities include districting all Academic staff on a bi-weekly basis and reviewing election and districting processes and rules to ensure that the academic staff members may exercise their institutional governance rights in the most effective, equitable, and efficient manner. The complete DRC charge can be found in the Academic Staff Policies and Procedures. Chapter 13, The link to the DRC general information on the AS web site is  

My email address is wrong. Can you update it in the list that is sent out to the representatives?

In a word, no. The lists are generated automatically from data received from the payroll office. You'll need to have your address changed in the University's records to have it changed in the data we send out. If we were to make the change, that change would be overwritten by email address provided by the payroll office once a month.

I think my district is wrong. What should I do?

Contact the chair of the Districting and Representation Committee, Megan Ackerman-Yost ( 

How are district numbers determined?

The district number reflects the general nature of the district. The hundreds digit represents the general area of your job title, and the ones digit tells you whether your representative is elected in odd or even years.

The following table explains what the digits in your district number mean.

District numbers as related to job title and academic discipline

Meaning of Hundreds Digit
(Job Title)

100's Scientists & Instrumentation Innovators


200's Category B Instructional Staff

These include the titles of professor (CHS), clinical professor, lecturer, faculty associate, and faculty assistant and their related prefixes.

300's Researchers


400's AND 500's

Category A Instructional Staff, Professionals & Managers

The grouping professionals and managers (terms taken from Unclassified Title Guidelines) includes Category A titles containing the terms specialist, technologist, manager, programmer, counselor, advisor, and editor. The functions of instruction, research, outreach, primary level administration and media support may be encompassed within a single district. Predominant function(s) of a district depend upon the academic area. This grouping is intended to recognize collegial working relationships among people with these titles within an academic area and career progression from specialist to manager, technologist, etc.

600's Specially Constructed Districts


700's Districts for Administrators

Separating supervisors from those they supervise is recommended above the first-line level of management. Those academic staff in the higher pay ranges or director-series titles have many alternatives to effect change on campus. By grouping these supervisory people in the districts listed in this section, academic staff in other districts are more likely to gain a greater voice through representation in the ASA.

800's Future Expansion


900's Unrepresented Districts

These districts are special. They will not be subject to the minimum and maximum district size limitations. It is unlikely that candidates will be found to stand for election as district representatives, although invitations will be issued.

Example: A researcher in physical sciences would be in a 300 district because she is a researcher. The final digit indicates whether her rep is elected in an even or an odd year.

Can I link to the DRC site?
Yes, but please link only to the main page. Links to sections within the site are not guaranteed to stay constant, and may break at any time.

Can I get a copy of the email lists? I want to send information out to members of certain districts.

Our policy is to provide email lists to the Secretary of the Academic Staff only. You can make a request for such lists from the secretary, or you can send your message to the individual representatives and ask them to forward it on to the members of their respective districts.

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