Vice president of administration and finance position still vacant

The vice president of administration and finance position remains vacant after the former vice president, Maureen Murphy, passed on Dec. 12.

President M. Lee Pelton said in an interview that the college is taking a three-prong approach to handling the vacancy—creating a search committee, hiring a search firm, and hiring an interim vice president of administration and finance.

Pelton said the goal is to hire the interim vice president on or around Feb. 1 and the permanent vice president on or around July 1. The college interviewed two search firms—who will help find and recruit applicants for the job—and hopes to find a firm by Jan. 28, according to Pelton.

The vice president of administration and finance oversees the college’s financial, physical, and human resources. The office is responsible for improving the college’s financial strength and serves as a liaison to committees such as the Board of Trustees Finance Committee, the Investment Committee, the Facilities Committee, and the Audit Committee.

In the meantime, Pelton and the four people who reported to Murphy have taken on the responsibilities of the office of vice president of administration and finance. These four includes Arthur Mombourquette, senior associate vice president for real estate, Shari Stier, senior associate vice president and chief human resources officer, Robert Butler, associate vice president for finance, and Loretta Bemis, associate vice president for financial business services. Pelton said he meets with this group every other week.

“They are highly competent and it is a strong team, so I do not feel like we are going to miss a beat,” Pelton said.

The college is assembling a search committee composed of members from the Board of Trustees, faculty, administration, and one student to find someone to fill the vacancy, according to Pelton. The search committee reviews applicants for the position. Michael MacWade, the Board of Trustees treasurer, chairs the committee. He served on the search committee to hire a vice president for development and alumni relations in 2016.

Student Government Association Executive Treasurer Ian Mandt said he will serve as the student representative on the committee. He was asked to serve in an email from Pelton.

“Lee Pelton is aware that I worked with [Murphy] pretty closely before she took a leave of absence for health-related reasons,” Mandt said. “I consulted with other members of SGA to make sure we were okay with me serving as a student representative. So pretty much within a day or so, I responded back saying I was interested.”

Pelton said he wanted a student on the search committee because the vice president of administration and finance handles matters that have an impact on students.

“I wanted a student on the committee because two of the most pressing issues for our students today are financial transparency and increased financial aid,” Pelton said.

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