Job Summary: Furman University in Greenville, South Carolina, invites nominations and applications for the role of Vice President for Finance and Administration (VPFA). Reporting to President Elizabeth Davis, the VPFA provides leadership and proactive financial and administrative planning to support The Furman Advantage—the university's promise to provide every student an individualized four-year pathway that integrates outstanding academics, engaged learning, enhanced mentoring and advising, and reflection to prepare graduates for meaningful and successful lives and careers.
Furman Overview Situated on a beautiful, 940-acre campus, Furman University is a premier residential liberal arts and sciences institution located in Greenville, South Carolina. Ranked by U.S. News and World Report as the top school in its category in South Carolina and among the top five in the Southeast, Furman is steeped in rich history and considered an innovator in higher education. The university provides immersive education to 2,700 undergraduates from nearly every state and more than 50 countries; an additional 400 graduate students in its education, health and chemistry master's programs; and hundreds more in continuing education in corporate and professional development, lifelong learning, and an evening undergraduate degree program. The university also offers distinguished music and visual and performing arts programs and a successful NCAA Division I athletics program.
Leadership Opportunity Profile The Vice President for Finance and Administration serves as the university's chief financial and administrative officer, overseeing all financial planning and execution, accounting operations, debt management and the endowment. Furman's annual budget is approximately $165 million and its endowment is just over $700 million. An important role of the VPFA will be to design and build cross-functional capabilities to manage institutional data and align the university's investments with value-enhancing activities. In this capacity, the VPFA serves as a key advisor to President Davis and works collaboratively with the Board of Trustees, senior leadership, faculty, and staff to ensure a successful and stable financial future for the university.
The VPFA is also responsible for facilities, capital planning, construction and auxiliary/administrative services (including human resources, dining services, the bookstore, postal operations, the child care center, procurement, real estate, the golf course, public safety, and a conference center). In addition, the VPFA serves as the liaison to three Trustee committees - Financial Health and Resources, Audit, and Investments.
Primary responsibilities include:
Monitor and report on the financial condition and performance of the university
Develop financial models and provide contemporary analytics and forecasts to support university strategic planning
Provide operations leadership (especially of the plant and grounds)
Operate efficient and effective auxiliary/administrative services to support students, faculty and staff
Serve as the finance resource on various initiatives related to external partnerships and joint ventures
Build strong, trusting and credible relationships with internal and external stakeholders
Be a strong mentor who understands and builds upon the strengths of the team to foster growth and development
Desired Talents and Qualities The Vice President for Finance and Administration will be a strategically oriented leader who brings a distinguished record of senior leadership in finance and administration in higher education or a similarly complex organizational setting. Desired talents and qualities include:
Ability to consistently and concisely communicate complex matters of finance, financial performance and financial priorities to key constituents
Drive to innovate, standardize and streamline financial processes and utilize contemporary analytics to manage and monitor performance in the higher education market
Ability to provide continuous operational and financial performance improvement
Experience managing coherent strategic choices and cross-functional collaborationto further the mission of a complex institution
A demonstrated understanding of the emerging needs, trends and political issues in higher education
A spirit of partnership, transparency and fiscal responsibility
A track record of outstanding performance in motivating and mentoring high-performing teams and supporting a collaborative approach and accountability
A demonstrated ability and commitment to work with diverse populations is required; an MBA, CPA or other relevant advanced degree is strongly preferred.
Furman University is committed to providing equal access to its educational programs, activities, and facilities to all otherwise qualified individuals without discrimination on the basis of race, national origin, color, creed, religion, sex, age, disability, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity, or any other category protected by applicable state or federal law. As an Equal Opportunity Employer, Furman also affirms its commitment to nondiscrimination in its employment policies and practices. In compliance with Title IX (20 U.S.C Sec. 1681 et seq.), Furman University prohibits sex discrimination, including sexual harassment.