Reports To: Vice President for Finance & Administration
Department: Finance & Administration
The Senior Associate Vice President for Finance reports to and serves as a senior advisor to the Vice President for Finance & Administration. The Senior AVP for Finance is a key member of the leadership team for the Finance & Administration division and assists the VPF&A in divisional and university-wide strategic plan initiatives. The Senior AVP for Finance provides strategic leadership for the University’s financial operations and ensures financial and business policies, processes, and services are developed and executed to advance the mission of the University in accordance with federal, state, and University guidelines.
Primary Job Duties and Responsibilities:
Provides strategic leadership and operational oversight of the financial, accounting, tax, procurement, budget/fiscal planning and treasury services of the University. Works collaboratively with University leadership and key internal and external stakeholders to ensure exceptional oversight of University finances.
Develops and maintains finance and accounting systems and processes that meet the financial management needs of the University.
Develops and maintains a staffing structure and high functioning team to effectively meet the financial operation and management needs of the University and provide high quality, timely financial information. Facilitates and directs the process of goal setting for all direct reports, conducts regular meetings to monitor workflow, and offers feedback and guidance to support the professional development of direct reports.
Manages and directs outstanding debt portfolio and future debt issuances including the preparation of materials required to issue new debt, rating agency presentations, and other supporting analysis. Advises VPF&A on emerging financial trends impacting the University's credit rating.
Represents the VPF&A as needed and assigned on a wide range of financial matters, such as leading or participating in special projects, implementing strategic initiatives, serving on university committees and making presentations to the President and Senior Leadership team.
Establishes strong relationships with campus partners and external stakeholders, including bankers, investment advisors, legal counsel, auditors, and others, and performs other duties as assigned.
Bachelor’s degree from a four-year college or university in public administration, accounting, finance, or a related field; 8 to 10 years of experience working in a management capacity in Accounting/Finance/Budget.
Preferred Qualifications: MBA or CPA; comparable experience in a college or university setting.
Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities (KSA):
Business Strategy & Acumen: Understands higher education and can use industry/professional terminology fluently. Thinks strategically and seeks to align department services and goals with institutional strategic goals. Asks critical questions to delve to root cause to identify solutions. Understands the interconnection of decisions, actions, outcomes and measures.
Professional Knowledge and Application: Takes initiative to develop and apply professional knowledge and skills in order to enhance individual effectiveness and improve organizational performance. Creates opportunities to apply new learnings and best practices into innovative solutions that positively impact results. Seeks opportunities for development for both self and the team.
Business Execution: Leverages professional expertise and University knowledge to assess areas of opportunity, identify solutions and effectively execute the plan. Demonstrates a high level of planning and organizational skills and the ability to move projects forward to completion. Self-motivated and accountable for results. Seeks advice and input from others and recognizes when to escalate issues or seek help.
Communication: Demonstrates the ability to deliver accurate, concise and quality communication (verbal and written) in a timely manner. Encourages an open exchange of ideas and differing perspectives. Adapts communication style to meet the needs of diverse audiences and situations. Listens to understand others. Provides quality feedback.
Relationship Management: Works to build and manage productive relationships with peers, leaders and customer groups. Effectively engages and interacts with others to collaborate and provide value-added support that enhances department results and team effectiveness. Affects outcomes and direction of customer’s decisions through effective relationships, trust and credibility.
Leadership: Demonstrates an openness and flexibility towards new ideas and concepts and effectively influences or facilitates during times of change. Helps others become more effective through development and coaching. Utilizes candid feedback, knowledge, resources and opportunities to improve the performance of others and to increase their contributions. Sets clear expectations for performance, provides meaningful feedback, holds employees accountable and recognizes successes.
Director of Fiscal Planning & Analysis- 1
Director of Student Financial Services- 1
Director of Procurement & Contract Services-1
Director of Auxiliary Services- 1
Director of Finance/HR Systems Support- 1
Dotted line – Interim Director Strategic Planning & Fiscal Affairs for Coastal Operations
The University of Southern Mississippi
The University of Southern Mississippi (USM) is a comprehensive public research institution delivering transformative programs on campuses in Hattiesburg and Long Beach, at teaching and research sites across the Mississippi Gulf Coast, as well as online. Founded in 1910, USM is one of only 131 universities in the nation to earn the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education’s "R1: Doctoral Universities – Very high research activity” designation, and its robust research enterprise includes experts in ocean science and engineering, polymer science and engineering, and large event venue safety and security, among others. USM is also one of only 39 institutions in the nation accredited in theatre, art and design, dance and music. As an economic driver, USM generates an annual economic impact of more than $663 million across the state. USM welcomes a diverse student body of more than 14,000, representing 71 countries, all 50 states, and every county in Mississippi. USM students have collected four Truman Scholarships and 37 National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowships, while also leading Mississippi with 27 Goldwater Scholarships, an honor that recognizes the next generation of great research scientists. Home to the Golden Eagles, USM competes in 17 Division I sports sponsored by the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA). For more information, visit usm.edu.
Points of Pride
The University of Southern Mississippi is a Carnegie R1, public higher education institution with a robust research enterprise, vibrant arts community, and diverse student body.
Commonly known as Southern Miss, the University offers a wide range of academic programs on campuses in Hattiesburg and Long Beach, and at additional sites along the Mississippi Gulf Coast. The University offers a variety of online degree programs at the undergraduate and graduate level through Online at Southern Miss.
USM is rated No. 3 in the nation and No. 1 in the Southeast by Military Times in its “Best for Vets: Colleges 2021 Rankings.”
USM is Mississippi's only dual-campus university with campuses in Hattiesburg and Long Beach.
USM has more than 200 student organizations.
Golden Eagle athletics teams compete in 17 Division I sports sponsored by the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA).
USM has a student-to-faculty ratio of 17:1 and an average class size of 22 students.
As an economic driver, USM generates an annual economic impact of more than $663 million across the state.
USM welcomes a diverse student body of more than 14,000, representing 71 countries, all 50 states, and every county in Mississippi.
USM students have collected four Truman Scholarships and 37 National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowships, while also leading Mississippi with 27 Goldwater Scholarships, an honor that recognizes the next generation of great research scientists.
Named by Forbes as a Best Employer 2021, #6 in Mississippi, and #1 in Education.
USM Coastal Operations extend across the Mississippi Gulf Coast, including our Gulf Park campus in Long Beach, which serves as a hub for academic instruction in key fields. As the leading research university on the Mississippi Gulf Coast, USM provides students with pathways to careers in uncrewed systems, maritime industry, offshore exploration, environmental monitoring, port operations, and with federal and state agencies.
Undergraduate and graduate students from all over the country take summer courses at the USM Gulf Coast Research Laboratory. These students are provided with an unrivaled academic experience in a marine lab setting and the opportunity to work side-by-side with experts in the marine field.
The USM Marine Education Center is located in Ocean Springs and serves as the outreach arm of the University’s Gulf Coast Research Laboratory.
The center connects the public with coastal and marine science through several programs, including those that allow school and community groups to tour coastal habitats and gain a deeper understanding of marine plants and animals. The center also provides undergraduate and graduate students an opportunity to learn about coastal environments in an intensive field and lab-based setting.
The University of Southern Mississippi’s Marine Research Center is located at the Port of Gulfport, situated along Highway 90. The center provides shoreside support to USM’s 135-foot oceanographic research vessel, the R/V Point Sur, and to a number of academic programs. The facility includes classrooms, laboratories, an 8-foot-deep in-ground testing tank, administrative offices and storage areas.
The University of Southern Mississippi’s Thad Cochran Marine Aquaculture Center conducts research to support locally grown seafood and overcome obstacles that constrain the production of marine species. Research at the center includes studies of aquatic disease and genetics as well as offshore design.
USM is home to the only blue crab hatchery in production in the United States. The hatchery is part of the USM Gulf Coast Research Laboratory's Thad Cochran Marine Aquaculture Center in Ocean Springs.
The University of Southern Mississippi, in conjunction with partner organizations across the Mississippi Gulf Coast, announced the Gulf Blue innovation initiative to position Mississippi on the global stage for blue economy-related work.
This initiative is poised to bring “Big Ideas Out of the Blue” and pools the knowledge of research scientists, federal agencies, industry partners and entrepreneurs to further develop the Gulf Coast region into a global leader in ocean- and maritime-related technologies.
Academic and Research Excellence
USM students have earned 27 Goldwater Scholarships, the most of any Mississippi institution. Scholarships are awarded to college sophomores and juniors who intend to pursue research careers in the natural sciences, mathematics and engineering.
Our College of Business and Economic Development is empowering entrepreneurs and developing the next generation of business leaders. USM is among only 1% of institutions in the world to earn dual accreditation in both business and accounting by AACSB.
USM business and accounting programs are AACSB-accredited, representing the highest standard of achievement for business schools worldwide.
Two USM nursing programs are ranked as the best in Mississippi by U.S. News & World Report. The Master of Science in Nursing and the Doctor of Nursing Practice were the top programs in the state based on factors such as research activity, student-faculty ratio, faculty credentials and number of faculty active in nursing practice.
USM has been recognized as home to one of the nations’ best online graduate nursing programs. U.S. News & World Report places USM at No. 66 nationally.
The USM nursing program produces more than 175 graduates per year, a 95% NCLEX pass rate, and a nearly 100% graduate employment rate.
USM has earned a No. 50 ranking by U.S. News & World Report in its 2020-21 Best Online Bachelor’s Programs list for veterans.
USM offers the only bachelor’s degree in marine science in Mississippi. This program provides students with a multidisciplinary education that integrates natural and computational sciences in the study of ocean dynamics.
As part of the Gulf Park campus based program, students have the opportunity to perform applied research across all marine science disciplines, apply cutting-edge technologies to ocean observing efforts, and conduct research aboard USM’s research vessels in the Gulf of Mexico.
USM offers the only bachelor’s degree in ocean engineering in Mississippi and one of only 10 programs in the nation.
USM is home to the only marine science program in Mississippi and one of only 16 undergraduate programs in the nation.
The USM Honors College is one of the oldest public honors colleges in the nation. Today, the Honors College is composed of hundreds of curious, imaginative, and aspiring scholars who strive for excellence, thrive on academic challenge, and serve and lead both on our campuses and in the community.
USM is one of only 39 institutions in the nation accredited in theatre, art and design, dance, and music.
The Pride of Mississippi marching band is highly respected and has performed around the world, including at prestigious events like the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.
USM ranked as the nation’s top PhD program in counseling psychology according to CounselingPsychology.org.
Our School of Polymer Science and Engineering has a 95 percent job placement rate upon graduation. Graduates work with companies such as Chevron, GE Aviation, Hexion, Boeing and more.
The University’s online bachelor’s degree programs earned a No. 75 national U.S. News and World Report ranking, the best among Mississippi institutions, and a leap from No. 93 in 2020.
The Drapeau Center for Undergraduate Research provides USM students opportunities to get involved in research, creative or other scholarly activities, find funding for these activities, or share their work on campus and beyond.?
USM’s School of Polymer Science and Engineering is nationally and internationally recognized for the achievements of faculty, its level of research excellence, and the quality of students in the program. Faculty members have earned more than 60 patents in polymer-related areas.
The National Center for Spectator Sports Safety and Security (NCS4) at The University of Southern Mississippi is the nation’s only academic center devoted to the study and practice of spectator sports safety and security.
The de Grummond Children's Literature Collection at USM is one of the largest and most well-known collections of children’s literature in the world.
The Search Committee invites nominations, applications (a letter of interest, resume/CV, and the names and contact information of five or more references) or expressions of interest to be submitted to the search firm assisting the University. Confidential review of materials will begin immediately and continue until the position is filled. It is preferred, however, that all nominations and applications be submitted to the search firm:
Porsha Williams, Vice President Allison DeLucia, Executive Recruiting Coordinator
As an Affirmative Action/Equal Employment Opportunity employer/Americans with Disabilities Act institution, The University of Southern Mississippi encourages minorities, women, veterans and persons with disabilities to apply.