Anthem Executive Seeks CFO for UNLV

June 5, 2023 – Executive recruitment firm Anthem Executive has been enlisted to find the next vice president, business affairs, and chief financial officer for the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV). Leading the assignment are Scott WatsonMichael BallewMike “JR” Wheless, and Florene Stawowy.

The CFO will be expected to provide vision, leadership, and strategic direction and responsibility for administrative services; facilities management; financial services; financial planning, budget and analysis; planning, construction, and real estate; and support services (compliance, communication, change management, and project management), said the search firm. This leader also represents UNLV on the Nevada System of Higher Education Business Officers Council.

The CFO will lead an organization of approximately 500 employees that deliver essential infrastructure services for the institution, said Anthem Executive. The role requires leadership, communication, and management and team responsibilities, as well as a commitment to service and effective business processes.

Strategic and Innovative Leadership

The individual in this role is expected to provide strategic and innovative leadership in supporting the president and leadership in achieving the institutional Top Tier 2.0 vision and goals, said the search firm. The CFO will serve as a collaborative partner for the president, cabinet, and campus leaders to support the strategic priorities set forth by institutional leadership by identifying financial strategies to best utilize resources through periods of growth and challenges and overseeing division operations while managing risks and compliance requirements.

The CFO is also charged with communicating regularly with team members, the campus community (i.e., leadership, faculty, staff, and students), and external stakeholders. Communications include development of webpages and other mechanisms to provide information and resources to campus users and external stakeholders, including contributions to business affairs newsletters and operational meetings.

The CFO must establish and foster a strong, cohesive, and high-functioning team focused on results and built on trust, robust dialogue, commitment, and accountability; and to clearly convey UNLV and divisional missions and expectations, define roles and responsibilities, and build commitment to unit and institutional purpose and goals, said Anthem Executive.

Key Requirements

A bachelor’s degree in business, finance, accounting, or a relevant field is required for this role. Candidates must have a minimum of 10-plus years senior-level management experience in financial management and related areas. They should also have an advanced degree in finance, accounting, or business from an accredited institution; professional accreditation such as CPA; senior-level experience in a similar role in higher education; and experience working in a shared governance environment.

Related: Anthem Executive Seeks Provost for Western Oregon University

Candidates must have advanced knowledge of financial, budget, and business operations in higher education or a similarly complex environment, said Anthem Executive. Knowledge of software applications, technology tools, and mechanized systems related to the services and functions managed within the division is essential. They should also have knowledge of principles and practices of recruiting, training, supervision, and performance evaluation, including equity and promotion procedures as well as progressive discipline procedures and documentation.

Seasoned Recruiters

Anthem Executive, headquartered in Houston, TX, serves clients across a range of business sectors, including higher education, health sciences, corporate and non-profit institutions, global software and technology, private equity, insurance, service and manufacturing, oil and gas, and others. Its consultants bring a combined 80 years’ experience in the search industry. The firm’s higher education practice spans the entire leadership spectrum. In other sectors, Anthem Executive covers all roles from CEO and other C-suite leaders, board directors, vice president, and director, among others.

Anthem Executive Recruits CFO for Wayne State University
Anthem Executive has placed David Massaron, budget director for the State of Michigan, as chief business officer and CFO/senior vice president for finance and business operations and treasurer for Wayne State University in Detroit. Mr. Massaron will assume his new role upon the completion of the fiscal year 2022 budget for the state. Leading the assignment were Michael Ballew, Scott Watson, and Mike “JR” Wheless, co-founders, principals and consultants, along with Leyla Kayi, research and search operations, higher education. Mr. Massaron succeeds Rebecca Cooke, who came out of retirement to serve in the position on an interim basis. Ms. Cooke previously served as associate vice president for finance and administration, health affairs, as well as vice dean, finance, for the School of Medicine. She replaced William Decatur, who retired at the end of 2019.

Mr. Watson has been in the executive search industry for over 30 years. In addition to higher education institutions, he has served hospital/health systems, global software and technology companies, private equity enterprises, MCOs, insurance companies, service and manufacturing organizations with global footprints, and others.

Mr. Ballew, a registered Native American and member of the Echota Cherokee Tribe, serves as the firm’s chief diversity, inclusion, equity, and compliance officer, as well as search committee facilitator. He joined the executive search industry 14 years ago following a 20-plus year career in senior-level management with expertise in recruiting, counseling, training, operations, strategic planning, facilitation, project management, and workplace diversity.

Mr. Wheless, a veteran of more than two decades in the search industry, has served a broad portfolio of clients across many industry lines on behalf of organizations ranging from small operations to Fortune $100 billion plus enterprises – including working with and recruiting some of the nation’s most influential leadership. Mr. Wheless has served institutions and organizations across a broad range of geographies and sectors in higher education, technology, healthcare, energy, financial services, law, insurance, hospitality and food services, retail, CPG, EPC, manufacturing, aerospace, mining, construction, and real estate.

Ms. Stawowy, who has been in executive search for over 20 years, is a core member of the higher education and academic health practice. Over the last two decades, she has developed deep expertise in senior‐level search, having been charged with numerous executive leadership transitions with a particular emphasis on higher education and academic health search.

Related: Anthem Executive Recruits President for Lamar University 

Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief; Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor; and Stephen Sawicki, Managing Editor – Hunt Scanlon Media

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