University of Alaska Anchorage Taps AGB Search to Find CIO

November 3, 2023 – Washington, D.C.-based recruitment firm AGB Search, which specializes in higher education leadership assignments, has been selected by the University of Alaska Anchorage (UAA) to lead in its search for a new chief information officer. Margaret Plympton and Monica Burton are leading the assignment.

The CIO will be managing a staff of 40 and a budget of $8.9 million. This position works closely with the UA System Office of IT and the distributed IT staff at UAA’s community campuses. While experience in a college or university is not required, demonstrated interest in how learning is enhanced by technology and a passion for serving students and the faculty and staff who support them will be important. The CIO will lead the university in planning enterprise information systems and technology to support both distributed and centralized academic and business operations to achieve more effective and cost beneficial enterprise-wide IT operations.

AGB Search notes that the ideal candidate will possess a minimum of 10 years of progressively responsible management and support of corporate or public-sector information systems and information technology, direct management of a major IT operation is preferred. A master’s degree or doctorate in information systems, business administration, or field related to information technology/higher education is preferred. Candidates should have significant experience in a public university or public government setting is desirable, specifically in technology and information systems planning to support programmatic and business goals. Experience should also include exposure to both shared and outsourced solutions, as well as support of in-house information and communication systems in a multi-campus/unit environment. Specific experience with enterprise architecture, financial management and electronic teaching/learning information systems is a plus.

Established in 1917, The University of Alaska is a land-, sea- and space-grant system of higher education that serves more than 26,000 full and part-time students. The UA system’s three universities – University of Alaska Anchorage, University of Alaska Fairbanks, and University of Alaska Southeast – are separately accredited institutions with 13 community campuses and extended learning centers across the state.

Related: AGB Search Seeks Leaders for a Range of Key Higher Education Slots

AGB Search conducts searches for college and university presidents, chancellors, provosts, vice presidents, deans, university system heads, and CEOs of coordinating boards and related foundations. The firm was founded by the Association of Governing Boards of Universities and Colleges (AGB) in 2010.

Dr. Plympton joined AGB Search as a principal after serving in a similar role as a principal in the higher education practice of a global retained search firm. Her search expertise includes leading CFO/VPFA, dean, finance/auditing, human resources, information technology, real estate, compensation services, and compliance and audit searches. Earlier in her career she served as deputy chair and acting chair of the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH).

AGB Search Places President of West Liberty University
AGB Search has placed Tim Borchers as the next president of West Liberty University (WLU)  in West Virginia. Dr. Borchers is currently vice president for academic affairs at Peru State College in Nebraska. Richard A. Wueste, senior executive search consultant, and Jerome A. Gilbert, executive search consultant, led the assignment. “I am pleased to announce that Dr. Borchers was chosen by a unanimous vote and has accepted our offer to become West Liberty University’s president,” said Rich Lucas, chairman of WLU’s board of governors, who also served on the presidential search committee. “We welcome him to the Hilltop and look forward to introducing him to our students, alumni, donors, friends, and the wider community.”

A career executive search professional and leadership coach, Ms. Burton has spent more than 20 years placing and advising leaders in executive roles. She has worked across industry sectors from investment banking to non-profit. In addition to leading president/CEO searches, Ms. Burton has placed HR, finance, and IT leaders in a myriad of industries.  Since 2011, she has dedicated her practice to serving higher education. Her experience in higher education search spans presidential, academic, and business officer leadership roles.

CFO Search

In February, AGB Search placed Luke Fulp as CFO of the University of Alaska (UA) System. He was selected after a thorough national recruitment effort and replaces interim CFO Richard Schweigert. Ms. Plympton and Julie Staggs led the assignment. “Please join me in welcoming Luke to the University of Alaska,” said Pat Pitney, president. “I want to thank Richard for his excellent service to the university during the interim. Richard will stay on temporarily as the deputy CFO to help with the transition and close out other projects started under his tenure.”

Mr. Fulp has 20 years of experience supporting public education systems and has extensive financial management and leadership experience in academic settings. For more than a decade he served as deputy superintendent of business and operations for the Matanuska-Susitna Borough School District.

In his position with the University of Alaska, Mr. Fulp provides strategic direction and overall financial leadership for the university system’s fiscal operations. “I possess the skills and abilities necessary to support the mission and bring about positive change to the University of Alaska,” Mr. Fulp said.

Related: AGB Search Assists Gonzaga University in Finding CHRO

Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief; Dale M. Zupsansky, Executive Editor; Lily Fauver, Senior Editor – Hunt Scanlon Media

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