A key member of the President's senior leadership team, the Chief Financial Officer and Vice President of Finance and Administration (CFO/VPFA) serves as a critical strategic partner and trusted adviser to President Carol Quillen, her senior leadership team, and the Davidson Board of Trustees.
The CFO/VPFA is the chief financial, business and administrative officer of the College and provides guidance and leadership to ensure the efficient and effective stewardship of the College's physical and financial resources. This individual oversees all finance functions including budgeting, accounting, financial reporting, long-range financial planning, asset management, liability management, and risk management. The CFO/VPFA is also responsible for a range of non-finance functions including the operation and maintenance of facilities, construction activity, facilities planning, food service, sustainability, and public safety.
The CFO/VPFA plays a vital role in developing the collaborative, innovative culture of Davidson. As a key institutional leader, the CFO/VPFA will encourage bold thinking, bring wise counsel, and have an unwavering commitment to and understanding of the value of the education Davidson offers in a rapidly evolving global economy and world.
The CFO/VPFA attends all meetings of the Davidson Board of Trustees and works closely with the Board on several standing committees including the audit and finance, investment, and facilities committees.
KEY RELATIONSHIPS Reports to Carol Quillen, President Direct reports Chief Investment Officer Controller & Director of Business Services Director of Auxiliary Services Director of Facilities Management Director of Sustainability Chief of Police
Other key relationships Members of the senior leadership team Other critical constituencies include the Board, faculty, staff, parents, students, alumni, town of Davidson officials and Charlotte business and civic leaders
KEY RESPONSIBILITIES Serve as an active steward of the College's financial resources and operations; Be a strategic partner and advisor to the President, her leadership team, and the Board of Trustees; Lead Davidson's short- and long-term financial and capital planning, ensuring that resources are deployed efficiently and in support of the College’s mission and objectives; Collaborate with the College’s Chief Investment Officer (CIO) on issues relating to the management of the endowment, debt facilities and bond issues; Oversee the management of the physical plant, auxiliary services, business services, the sustainability office, and the relationship with campus police; Represent the College and its vision to financial partners, outsourced service providers, financial institutions, auditors, insurance brokers, and other relevant providers; and, Maintain and enhance a strong service culture, ensuring that the financial and operational functions of the College support its mission.
IDEAL EXPERIENCE Senior Finance and Administrative Experience 10+ years of experience providing strategic financial and operational leadership at a complex organization. Strategic Planning A strong strategic orientation with the ability to effectively partner with, and communicate to, the President and other leaders on the senior administrative team. Leadership/Management Experience Track record of recruiting, developing, and retaining a high-performing team characterized by open communication, collaboration, and accountability. Technical and Analytical Acumen Strong analytical skills and technical capability, including experience overseeing the administration and allocation of debt across the organization. In addition, expertise with enterprise-wide financial systems with the ability to translate technical information into usable and understandable format. Commercial Mindset Demonstrated experience identifying revenue generating opportunities through internal growth opportunities or external strategic partnerships. Strong Credentials Top academic credentials including an advanced degree in finance, business administration or a related field are preferred.
Mission Orientation Appreciation for, and commitment to, working within an academic institution with a specific passion for the liberal arts and fulfilling the mission of Davidson College.
CRITICAL LEADERSHIP CAPABILITIES Strategic Thinking At an elite college where fiscal and operational constraints will continue to exist, the next CFO/VPFA will work collaboratively to: Develop a long-range financial and business model that supports the strategic priorities of the institution as well as its resources; Implement sophisticated financial and performance management tools to enable better decision-making and ensure clarity on financial implications; Optimize capital structure, ensuring that debt levels are appropriate and beneficial for the College; Provide leadership that explores innovative solutions for major challenges and opportunities facing the College; and, Partner closely with the President to develop collaborative, transparent processes for prioritizing activities, allocating resources, and communicating to the community. Leading Change At a continually developing institution within an evolving educational landscape, the next CFO/VPFA will: Oversee a range of operational units with a focus on efficiency and effectiveness; Assess key campus-wide operational decisions and processes rigorously, and be bold and strategic in considering multiple ways to meet objectives; Consult broadly, question assumptions, and create an environment where continuous improvement, process assessment, and change are expected; Establish business practices and implement systems to support, measure, and reinforce service performance; and, Maintain and enhance a proactive, user-focused culture. Leading People As the most senior non-academic leader in an institution with a strong history of shared governance, the next CFO/VPFA will: Develop strong relationships across the institution and relate well with all levels of constituents, both internally and externally; Be accessible and responsive and listen carefully and communicate honestly; Demonstrate a commitment to being a collaborative, solutions-oriented individual who can help lead change; Be a model, coach, and mentor; attract, develop, and retain excellent financial and operational talent; Set high standards, assess performance, and establish a high bar of excellence; and, Model personal integrity and high ethical standards at all times.
THE SEARCH PROCESS Davidson College leadership is working with Spencer Stuart, and welcomes comments, questions, nominations, or expressions of interest. To submit comments, nominations, or expressions of interest, please send an e-mail with any supporting materials to the confidential address: davidsonCFO@spencerstuart.com.
At Davidson College, we believe the college grows stronger by recruiting and retaining a diverse faculty and staff committed to building an inclusive community. In order to achieve and sustain educational excellence, we seek to hire talented faculty and staff across the intersections of diverse races, ethnicities, religions, sexual orientations, gender identities, ages, socio-economic backgrounds, political perspectives, abilities, cultures, and national origins.
Davidson College seeks out intellectually curious students who are committed to developing their talents for lives of leadership and service.Small classes enable our renowned faculty to work closely with students, engaging them directly in original research and creative work across the arts, sciences, social sciences, and humanities. In the classroom and beyond, Davidson cultivates students' compassion, creativity, resilience, and moral courage.
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