VCFOA Recruitment

Vice Chancellor for Finance, Operations & Administration

Revised 7.30.2022

The University of California, Santa Cruz (UCSC), a Hispanic-Serving Institution, R1-research university and member of the Association of American Universities, invites nominations and applications for the position of Vice Chancellor for Finance, Operations & Administration (VC FOA). Reporting to Chancellor Cynthia Larive, the VC FOA provides dynamic leadership and vision necessary to assure effective and strategic management of UCSC's financial and physical resources. The VC FOA works closely with campus stakeholders at all levels to evaluate, plan, finance, and deliver business services and operations across the University that efficiently and effectively advance the University's educational, research, and service missions.

University of California, Santa Cruz

Since its founding in 1965, UC Santa Cruz has been on an unprecedented trajectory. From being the first in the world to assemble the DNA sequence of the human genome and make it publicly available, to marking a new era in astronomy by being the first to observe merging neutron stars, UC Santa Cruz researchers and experts have been at the forefront of major achievements that create new paradigms and effect real change.

The quality and quantity of UCSC research activities have resulted in steadily increasing public and private support, enabling UCSC scholars to contribute significantly to the body of research that has made the University of California the foremost public university system in the world. UCSC's FY2021 extramural research expenditures surpassed $100M. The University's FY2023 operating revenues are expected to be $935M.

UCSC operates under a shared governance model in which faculty, represented by the Academic Senate, primarily chart the University's educational course, while administrative leaders direct its finances, operations and organization. In practice, these domains overlap, are interdependent, and operate with a high level of consultation, trust, and mutual respect, and a tradition of collegial collaboration between administrative leaders and faculty.

Position Summary

Reporting to UCSC's Chancellor and working closely with UCSC's Campus Provost & Executive Vice Chancellor, the Vice Chancellor for Finance, Operations & Administration is both a senior leader and a member of UCSC's highly engaged community, participating in various campus bodies including the Chancellor's Cabinet and providing expertise and thought partnership. Leading the Finance, Operations, & Administration division, the VC FOA is responsible for six major units with an extensive portfolio of responsibilities including: financial affairs and procurement; staff human resources; risk and safety services; physical planning, development, and operations; sustainability; and campus housing and educational services. In addition, the VC FOA serves as the Chief Financial Officer of the UC Santa Cruz campus.

The FOA division provides institution-wide leadership for capital and financial planning and analysis in support of the campus goals and in service to the teaching, research, and public service mission of UC Santa Cruz. The Vice Chancellor and division staff assist the Chancellor, Campus Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor, vice chancellors, vice provosts, academic deans, department chairs, and unit administrators with campus resource management and planning for a $935M annual operating budget and an extensive and complex capital budget. The division supports campus strategic planning processes by providing objective, accurate, and timely analysis and advice on resource allocation for executive decision-making. The organization also determines priorities and assures day-to-day management of staff human resources including recruitment and retention, employee and labor relations, and employee development services; the development of the campus master plan and Long-Range Development Plan, including design, construction, and maintenance and operations of all facilities; upkeep of University property and sustainability of campus-wide physical and natural resources; management of campus housing, dining and educational services; and oversight of campus safety infrastructure and programs, including environmental health and safety (EH&S), fire, and police.

As a UCSC senior leader, the VC FOA participates in various campus groups, including the Chancellor's Cabinet, providing expertise and thought partnership. They also provide leadership to various governance and advisory groups on behalf of the Chancellor or Campus Provost/Executive Vice Chancellor. In addition, the VC FOA represents UCSC to the University of California Office of the President (UCOP) in the areas of financial planning, resource development and management, capital planning, and sustainability and collaborates with counterparts across the University of California in the context of the systemwide gatherings of chief financial and administrative officers.

The VC FOA is an integral member of an innovative and dynamic leadership team and a key partner in achieving the University's ambitious vision for growth while being mindful of the need to develop new models of strategic financial stewardship. They develop and manage the financial framework within which UCSC pursues its future, identifying and assessing opportunities such as new revenue sources and asset utilization, while also measuring and mitigating risks. And they contribute their energy and commitment to this highly engaged academic community.

The VC FOA is also responsible for implementing campus and University of California policy governing administrative and business services, and sustaining management systems, policies, standards, and programs to effect efficient business practices and effective stewardship of assets. The VC FOA assesses, vets, and oversees change management programs for proposed and new policies and procedures to ensure smooth adoption and common benefit.

With nearly 1,000 employees and an annual expense budget of $100M (augmented periodically by one-time funds), Finance, Operations & Administration maintains close working relationships with distributed business functions in other areas of the University including academic divisions and administrative departments. In its current structure, Finance, Operations & Administration comprises the following units:

Colleges, Housing & Educational Services (CHES)
⦁ Bay Tree Bookstore
⦁ Business & Financial Analysis
⦁ College Life & Residential Services
⦁ Dining Services
⦁ Early Education Services (Childcare)
⦁ Employee Housing & Capital Planning
⦁ Housing Services
⦁ Student Conduct

Financial Affairs
⦁ Financial Accounting & Reporting
⦁ Financial Admin Services & Transactions; Accounts Payable
⦁ Payroll
⦁ Real Estate and Contract Services
⦁ University Business Services
⦁ Procurement & Supply Chain Services
⦁ Copy Program
⦁ Receiving Services
⦁ Mail Services
⦁ Surplus Services
⦁ Student Business Services

Physical Planning, Development & Operations (PPDO)
⦁ Capital Planning & Space Management
⦁ Design & Construction Services
⦁ Engineering Services
⦁ Physical & Environmental Planning Services
⦁ Physical Plant Services
⦁ Building & Utility Services
⦁ Work Management
⦁ Custodial
⦁ Energy Services
⦁ Fleet Services
⦁ Grounds
⦁ PPDO Business Services

Risk & Safety Services
⦁ Business & Administrative Support
⦁ Environmental Health & Safety
⦁ Office of Emergency Services (OES)
⦁ Risk Services
⦁ Santa Cruz Fire Department
⦁ University Police
⦁ Transportation & Parking Services

Staff Human Resources
⦁ Benefits
⦁ Business Administration, Policy Projects & Resources
⦁ Compensation & Operations
⦁ Employee & Labor Relations
⦁ HR Business Information Services
⦁ Talent Acquisition
⦁ Training & Development

Sustainability Office

UCSC's budget and planning function, organized in the Budget Analysis and Planning unit, currently reports to the Campus Provost/Executive Vice Chancellor with a secondary reporting line to the Chancellor. Budget Analysis and Planning works closely with several units that report to the VC FOA, especially Capital Planning and Space Management, and with the hiring of the VC FOA, Budget Analysis and Planning will have a dual reporting relationship to the CFO and the Campus Provost/Executive Vice Chancellor.

Core Responsibilities

⦁ Serve as a senior advisor to the Chancellor and Campus Provost/Executive Vice Chancellor on a wide range of issues including long range planning and development of administrative programs, organizations and structures that support the campus teaching, learning, research, and public service mission of the University and on a range of matters related to campus financial and physical resources and operational needs.
⦁ Represent UCSC at the Council of Vice Chancellors of Administration (COVCA), Vice Chancellors of Planning and Budget (COVCPB) meetings, and other system wide committees on financial and administrative policies and direction as requested.
⦁ Maximize University of California Office of the President (UCOP) support for campus initiatives and programs and assist in coordinating shared services across the system.
⦁ Represent the campus with government, professional, higher-education, and community organizations dealing with financial, operational, and administrative activities.
⦁ Cultivate credibility with city, state, and federal officials and other community leaders to promote the university and its work.
⦁ Maintain close working relationships and seek input from UCSC academic and administrative leaders to understand and support their financial, operational, and administrative needs. Guide the partnership and coordination of services between central and distributed financial, operational, and administrative units.
⦁ Develop and maintain multi-year strategic plans that address challenges and opportunities and determine future directions consistent with the University mission. Facilitate implementation strategies, monitor and measure goals and accomplishments, and promote information transparency by sharing how data-informed decisions are made.
⦁ Oversee the division's operating budget, allocating resources to advance the mission of the university. Monitor financial and programmatic results through periodic program and financial reports.
⦁ Lead teams to assure accuracy, privacy, and effectiveness of campus business processes, with a focus on business practice productivity and efficiency. Ensure effective stewardship of University resources.
⦁ Develop and promote training and professional development for the finance, operations, and administration division staff, as well as develop long-term succession plans for the division.
⦁ Develop and maintain strong relationships with strategic partners to ensure success of critical campus projects.
⦁ Represent the finance, operations, and administration division in consultations with various campus constituencies and committees, and work constructively with the Academic Senate.
⦁ With senior campus leadership, develop and maintain policies, procedures, programs, and standards that advance and support the academic and research goals of the university.
⦁ Identify and pursue opportunities for extramural funding for divisional activities that will strengthen operations.


UCSC leaders have identified a set of required and preferred qualifications:

Basic Qualifications

⦁ An earned baccalaureate or equivalent degree in a relevant field.
⦁ Leadership and management experience in finance, operations, and administration or a related area.
⦁ Experience leading complex financial planning, budget appropriation, and allocation processes and reporting with various revenue streams and financing strategies for a public organization which includes capital projects and auxiliary enterprises.
⦁ A deep understanding of financial operations and systems, as well as experience with the development and execution of long-term financial strategy at the enterprise level.
⦁ Experience in the planning, delivery, maintenance, and operations of facilities, infrastructure, and grounds.
⦁ Experience with complex issues surrounding public safety in the context of a diverse public university.
⦁ Ability to conceptualize broad institutional goals and systematically analyze complex issues and data.
⦁ Demonstrated excellence in managing, organizing, and supervising to meet goals.
⦁ Experience working with complex policies and procedures to initiate and execute new contracts with various individuals and agencies.
⦁ Excellent interpersonal skills and effective written and oral communication; ability to communicate with constituents across all levels of the organization as well as with internal and external stakeholders.
⦁ Demonstrated ability to lead effectively as a collaborative partner in a diverse, mission-driven environment with a variety of different constituencies.
⦁ Ability to analyze and understand the impacts of policies and programs on diverse communities.

Preferred Qualifications

⦁ Advanced degree in business, finance, public administration, or a relevant field.
⦁ Executive level leadership experience, preferably in higher education at a research university.
⦁ Success implementing change across an organization that has a diverse set of stakeholders, including institution- and state-level governing boards.
⦁ Success building effective teams, developing, and retaining talented staff, and leading a diverse organization.
⦁ Experience working within a system of shared governance that encourages participation in the decision-making process and administrative accountability.
⦁ Experience ensuring compliance within an environment that has complex federal and state laws and regulations.
⦁ Success leveraging enterprise systems and technology to provide accurate, timely, and relevant information to decision-makers.


UCSC has retained Opus Partners ( to support this recruitment. Craig Smith, Partner, Katie Dean, Associate Partner, and Thomas Lapierre, Senior Associate are leading the search. Confidential inquiries, applications, and nominations should be sent by email to Thomas Lapierre ( .

An application must include a resume, cover letter, and Statement of Contributions to Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion. Letters can highlight leadership experience, professional motivations, answer questions you might anticipate regarding your materials, or note an accomplishment that may not be evident on a resume.

To apply visit .

UCSC values diversity, equity, and inclusion and is seeking a leader who is committed to promoting these values throughout the organization. The Statement of Contributions to Diversity, Equity & Inclusion should address how you might promote these values as the VC FOA and highlight past professional support of initiatives designed to remove barriers and to increase participation by groups historically under-represented in cabinet-level roles (for more information, please visit the UCSC recruitment webpage ).

The chosen candidate will be expected to sign a statement representing that they are not the subject of any ongoing investigation or disciplinary proceeding at their current academic institution or place of employment, nor have they in the past ten years been formally disciplined at any academic institution/place of employment. In the event the candidate cannot make this representation, they will be expected to disclose in writing the circumstances surrounding any formal discipline that they have received, as well as any current or ongoing investigation or disciplinary process of which they are the subject. (Note that discipline includes a negotiated settlement agreement to resolve a matter related to substantiated misconduct.)

The University of California is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, age, or protected veteran status. UC Santa Cruz is committed to excellence through diversity and strives to establish a climate that welcomes, celebrates, and promotes respect for the contributions of all students and employees. Inquiries regarding the University's equal employment opportunity policies may be directed to: UCSC Equal Employment Opportunity webpage ( ).

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