As I prepare to step down as Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, I have been reflecting on the work we’ve done together during the last six years, and I am grateful for your wisdom and your partnership.
Despite serious challenges, together we have taken significant steps to advance the University. We have:
- Improved safety by investing in infrastructure and personnel and we are building a public safety organization that will be a model for peer institutions
- Invested in technology infrastructure, cyber-security and cloud-based technology platforms to enable our students, faculty, and staff to do their work effectively in a secure environment
- Modernized administrative tools and streamlined policies to elevate work from transactional to analytical and support informed decision-making
- Undertaken a major transformation project to provide better human resources services, positioning the University to attract and retain talented employees in all parts of the institution
- Developed a new financial model to fund strategic investments in University priorities and promote affordability while supporting excellence across the academic enterprise.
- Implemented a new budget model that fosters entrepreneurial and collaborative actions in all schools and units
- Instituted new practices for managing the University’s debt and risk portfolios and sustained the University’s coveted AAA bond rating
- Restored facilities that are the heart of the University, including the Rotunda, built new ones to meet existing needs, and developed long-term plans to address the needs of the future
- Studied the economic impact of the University on the Commonwealth of Virginia and supported the growth of new programs and partnerships to bolster the state’s economy
- Challenged ourselves and each other to improve continuously and to strive for excellence in all that we do in support of the University’s mission
At the same time, our Operations team provided essential services and support to keep the University running, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. Your work enables our students to focus on learning, our faculty to focus on teaching and researching, and our clinicians to focus on caring for patients. The importance of this cannot be overstated. Our Operations team is essential to the fulfillment of the University’s mission.
I have spent time with my successor, J.J. Davis, over the last few months, and I am excited about what the future has in store for our Operations team and the University. J.J. brings solid experience in higher education, including serving in a similar role at George Mason University. She is enthusiastic about coming here and working with all of you, and I have assured her that she will have an exceptionally strong team by her side. All of you have enriched my time here, and I know that you will do the same for J.J.
I will be around in the coming months, working on several projects and doing whatever I can to support J.J. and President Ryan. I look forward to seeing you on Grounds and around town. Thank you for everything you have done for me and that you will continue to do for the University that we have served together.
Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer