President Mark Schlissel has appointed a 14-member advisory committee and launched the search for the University of Michigan’s next executive vice president and chief financial officer.

The committee, chaired by Ravi Pendse, vice president for information technology and chief information officer, will assist in the search for the successor to Kevin Hegarty, who is retiring at the end of April.

“U-M’s long track record of financial strength and world-class operations is crucial to success in advancing our public mission,” Schlissel said. “The executive vice president and CFO position has a leading role in maintaining and enhancing the excellence of our university.”

The CFO is one of three executive vice presidents for the university and is a key member of the U-M leadership team.

As with other searches for U-M executive officers, the selection process will remain confidential until Schlissel makes his recommendation to the Board of Regents.

Schlissel also announced a plan for interim leadership as the search is not expected to conclude by Hegarty’s departure. Subject to the approval of the Board of Regents at a future meeting, and beginning May 1, the position will be filled on an interim basis by Brian Smith, associate vice president for finance.

Currently, Smith is responsible for central financial functions including purchasing, accounting, payroll, risk management and sponsored programs, as well as the externally audited financial statements, financial analysis, internal controls, tax management and treasury functions.

Smith joined U-M in 2019 and previously was a senior assistant vice chancellor and treasurer at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

The search advisory committee also includes:

  • Zarinah Aquil, student services representative, graduate program in immunology in the Medical School and member of Voices of the Staff.
  • Wayne Baker, faculty director and core faculty, Center for Positive Organizations; Robert P. Thome Professor of Business and professor of management and organizations in the Ross School of Business; and professor of sociology in LSA.
  • Amy Dittmar, senior vice provost for academic and budgetary affairs; professor of finance in the Ross School of Business; and professor of economics in LSA.
  • Shante Galloway, human resources business partner in the School of Dentistry.
  • Lukeland Gentles, director, custodial & grounds services in the Office of the Associate Vice President for Facilities and Operations.
  • Michael Hague, vice chancellor for business & finance at UM-Flint.
  • Robert Hewlett, financial controller at Michigan Medicine.
  • Patricia Hurn, dean of the School of Nursing and professor of molecular, cellular and developmental biology in LSA.
  • Warde Manuel, Donald R. Shepherd Director of Athletics.
  • Patricia Petrowski, associate vice president and deputy general counsel.
  • Douglas Richstone, chair of the Faculty Senate Assembly’s financial affairs advisory committee and Lawrence H. Aller Collegiate Professor of Astronomy in LSA.
  • Steven Schlecht, executive director of administration and chief financial officer of LSA.
  • Robin Washington, U-M alumnus and former executive vice president and chief financial officer of Gilead Sciences Inc.

Stephen Yaros, senior project manager, will provide staff support in the Office of the President. Mark Hall and Heather Larabee from the executive search firm Spelman Johnson have been retained to help with the search.

Ideas, feedback and nominations should be emailed to input-EVPCFOsearch@umich.edu. Further inquiries regarding nominations and applications can be emailed to mah@spelmanandjohnson.com and hjl@spelmanandjohnson.com.

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