ICYMI: An overview of the two finalists for VC/VP of Administration and Finance
The University and the UH System spent months in a nationwide search to fill the position of Senior Vice Chancellor and Senior Vice President for Administration and Finance.
Dawn M. Rhodes and Rebecca M. Wyke are currently the top two contenders to fill in the position as early as January.
The chosen candidate will take the place of Interim Vice Chancellor for Administration and Finance Jim McShan, who has worked with Administration and Finance in various roles for the past 20 years.
“The University of Houston and the University of Houston System looks forward to welcoming the next Senior Vice Chancellor/Senior Vice President for Administration and Finance when that new leader is identified,” Walker said.
The candidate will be named when President and Chancellor Renu Khator makes her final decision.
According to a Leadership Profile, the Senior VC/VP is responsible for the financial and business affairs of the University of Houston System and the University of Houston, which includes a budget of $1.71 billion for the System and $1.25 billion for UH, along with a staff of over 1,300.
Rhodes comes from Indiana University–Purdue University Indianapolis, and Wyke is from University of Maine at Augusta. Each has about seven years of experience in the Administration and Finance position at their respective universities.
Dawn M. Rhodes
Former Vice Chancellor for Finance and Administration at Indiana University–Purdue University Indianapolis Rhodes has 31 years of financial experience. She filled her position as vice chancellor for 7 years at IUPUI, which enrolled 31,000 students this fall and has an all-funds budget of roughly $1.4 billion, according to her resume application.
“My career is distinguished by demonstrated commitments to collaboration and partnership, transparency, customer service, data-driven decisions, ethical behavior and strong financial leadership,” Rhodes said in her application.
In her time at IUPUI, Rhodes created and chaired the Resource Planning Committee, which functions as an advisory committee for the Chancellor on financial matters for the campus. Rhodes said RPC has opened lines of communication, provided transparency and eliminated misunderstandings in the course of making significant financial recommendations to the Chancellor, resulting in “better alignment with strategic priorities.”
Rebecca M. Wyke
Wyke is currently the Interim President at the University of Maine at Augusta. She was temporarily reassigned from her position as Vice Chancellor for Finance and Administration and Treasurer of the Boards of Trustees of the UM System to serve as the principal adviser to the Chancellor and Board of Trustees for financial and administrative operations of the System and its seven universities.
She served seven years as UMA, which enrolled more than 6,000 students.
As vice chancellor, she oversaw the System’s $500 million unrestricted operating budget and $150 million in unrestricted activities, financial and administrative services and general operations.
Wyke implemented practices to monitor and report finances to the board and the public, such as “multi-year financial analysis to project revenues and expenditures five years into the future, current fiscal year forecasting to project year-end results at critical intervals during the year and financial ratio analysis” to monitor finance strength, according to her resume application.
Such practices include the Budget Stabilization Fund to supplement revenues and stabilize the budget during enrollment decline and economic turnouts.
“The report presents alternative forecasted scenarios for achieving financial sustainability,” Wyke said in her application.
Before her position at UMA, she served as a commissioner of the Department of Administrative and Finances Services in the State of Maine for five years. Wyke was the principal fiscal adviser to the governor and oversaw the state budget development and revenues.