Vice President of Finance and Administration

Bemidji State University & Northwest Technical College

Vice President of Finance and Administration

  • Institution: Bemidji State University & Northwest Technical College
  • Location: Bemidji, MN US

Vice President of Finance and Administration

  • Bemidji State University & Northwest Technical College | Bemidji, MN US
  • Hourglass IconJob Post Expiration: December 09, 2022
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Job TitleVice President of Finance and Administration

Position TypeFull Time

Job Category Executive

Salary Range -

Location Bemidji, MN US

Application Deadline -

Contact Information

Contact Name Academic Career & Executive Search

Department -


Phone -

Job Description

Bemidji State University & Northwest Technical College


Academic Career & Executive Search is pleased to assist Bemidji State University and Northwest Technical College in its search for Vice President of Finance and Administration.


For best consideration, please apply by December 2nd.


This is wonderful opportunity for a strategic thinker and visionary financial leader to join a close knit and supportive community as the next Vice President of Finance and Administration (VPFA). The VPFA provides equitable, inclusive, and ethical leadership for fiscal strategy, forecasting, and stewardship to enact and advance the mission, vision, values, and priorities of Bemidji State University (BSU) and Northwest Technical College (NTC).


The unique alignment of the two-year technical college with a four-year comprehensive state university makes for a nearly one-of-a-kind opportunity for innovation that enhances access and affordability while creating new pathways to educational goals, credentials, and degrees for students.  BSU and NTC’s location in Bemidji, a growing regional center, and among Minnesota’s three largest Native Nations creates possibilities for the aligned institutions to serve as an innovation hub for educational advancement and economic development throughout Northern Minnesota.


The VPFA reports directly to the President, acts as Senior Financial Officer, serves as part of the Executive Leadership Team and the Cabinet, and represents BSU and NTC in various roles and on committees of Minnesota State. The ideal candidate is an exceptional communicator who delivers a hands-on approach to leadership, operations, and problem solving. The VPFA holds supervisory responsibilities for a team of educational leaders who ensure stability, compliance, and integrity in the areas of Facilities Management, Information Technology Services (IT), Risk Management, Public Safety and Security, Procurement and Logistics, Parking, Facilities Planning and Construction, Business Office, Payroll, Scholarships, Bookstores, and University Investments.




  • 1. Leadership
    Serve as a member of the President’s Executive Leadership Team, Cabinets for BSU and NTC, and the President’s Leadership Council.
  • Provide thought leadership related to the scope of responsibility in planning and decision-making for the University and College.
  • Promote a culture of excellence, inclusion, innovation, accountability, and transparency by engaging key stakeholders identifying opportunities to achieve excellence and to ensure alignment of financial and operational strategies with the BSU and NTC mission, vision, values, and strategic priorities.
  • Demonstrate self-awareness of one’s own cultural beliefs, perspectives, and privileges as a part of one’s orientation toward leadership.
  • Acknowledge the specific and particular realities of Indigenous, Black and persons of color, LGBTQ individuals, people from low-income families, and other minoritized communities within Northern Minnesota while also connecting communities to local and regional experiences in order to foster a greater sense of belonging among employees and students.
  • Promote practices that are environmentally sustainable and consistent with practices advanced by American Indian stewards of the region’s land and water.
  • Advance efforts toward BSU’s institutional goal of achieving carbon neutrality by 2050 and increasing campus-community resilience, as pledged under Second Nature’s Climate Commitment.
  • Maintain currency in emergent fiscal, facility, technology, and risk-management practices informed by data and research through active engagement in relevant professional associations.
  • Ensure communication regarding University and College decisions to the various units within the division and across BSU and NTC.
  • Represent the BSU and NTC at system-wide meetings and other external entities.
  • Partner with the Office of Institutional Research and Effectiveness to compile, analyze, and interpret relevant data for strategic and data-informed decision-making as related to the scope of responsibility.
  • Educate the BSU, NTC, and stakeholders about fiscal, facility, technological, and risk management practices.

2. Senior Financial Officer

  • Provide strategic guidance and oversight in the development, monitoring, evaluation, and communication of the budget plans for BSU and NTC informed by mission, vision, and values; the strategic plan; and campus budgets.
  • Convene and facilitate the work of the Budget Advisory Committee (BAC) consisting of selected Cabinet administrators, representatives from bargaining units spanning both campuses, and student representatives from both campuses.
  • Drawing on data, trends, and input from the BAC, develop budgetary recommendations for the President and other senior leaders.
  • Establish baselines and fiscal targets to ensure that institutional budgets are equitable and reflect priorities articulated within the strategic plan.
  • Provide leadership in preparing and monitoring budgets to ensure compliance with laws, policies, procedures, and state statutes in accordance with Generally Accepted Accounting Principles.
  • Prepare or direct the preparation of financial/budgetary statements; forecasts; and analyses, reports, and ad hoc reporting.
  • Study and report on budgetary matters and policies including cost accounting to ensure the fulfillment of the short, intermediate, and long­ range plans.
  • Provides leadership to the Procurement and Logistic department.
  • Provides leadership and direction that ensures that positive outcomes for internal and external audits.
  • Communicate with students, staff, leadership, community stakeholders, and System Office staff on all matters related to finance and budget.
  • Lead conversations on addressing our budget inequalities and how we can better use our budget (particularly our recruiting and retention funds) to achieve our stated goals.

3. Facilities and Space Management

  • Provide strategic guidance and oversight in the development, monitoring, evaluation, and communication of all plans for all buildings, grounds, and related operations as informed by institutional mission, vision, and values; the strategic plan; and the master facility plan.
  • Advance institutional priorities of student success; diversity, equity, and inclusion including accessibility; and environmental sustainability in all facilities related work.
  • Prepare Requests for Proposals and hire and work closely with architects and construction/management firms.
  • Communicate effectively with staff, students, leadership, community stakeholders, and Minnesota State System Office about space planning, building, and facilities management.

4. Information Technology Services (IT)

  • Provide leadership and management of IT administrative and academic computing services including telecommunication and other enterprise technology, network systems, and technical support operations.
  • Support leadership in the preparation of a strategic plan for IT Services.
  • Communicate with students, staff, faculty, leadership, and community stakeholders on technology needs, budgets including technology fees.

5. Safety and Security Service

  • Lead and manage the Safety and Security Services including reporting of OSHA, hazardous waste, gas emissions, and parking.
  • Advance student learning and success, equity and inclusion, and health and wellbeing through the work of Safety and Security Services.
  • Lead, manage and Implement Emergency Plans including the Continuity Plan.

6. Supervision

  • Assess the qualifications of candidates and hire employees to perform job duties to achieve unit objectives.
  • Assign employees to job duties, provide training and direct employees in the execution of job responsibilities to meet unit objectives and annual work plans.
  • Evaluate employee performance, reward and/or discipline employees and promote, suspend, discharge, or change status according to performance.
  • Mediate and adjust grievances of employees in accordance with bargaining unit language.
    Direct the writing of employee position descriptions and approve the establishment of assigned work duties.
  • Administer applicable labor contract and/or plans fairly and equitably.
  • Perform all supervisory duties in accordance with established equal opportunity/affirmative action, non-harassment and employee safety policies and procedures.




  • Strategic thinker who can lead collaborative, long term planning in partnership with institutional leadership (e.g., financial planning, facilities master planning, IT master planning, strategic enrollment planning).
  • Professional who values and understands post-secondary education at all levels (technical, associate, bachelor, masters) and immerses themselves in understanding the unique and converging environments of Bemidji State University and Northwest Technical College.
  • Leader who understands the Finance & Administration division is a resource to support the academic and student service mission of the institution and develops a team within the division of strategic oriented and solution-oriented leaders.
  • Relationship builder who forwards the mission and vision of the institution through appreciation for and valued interactions with students, faculty, and staff at BSU and NTC, leadership at the Minnesota state system, the local Bemidji community, and the Indigenous and underrepresented communities within Northern Minnesota.
  • Fiscal leader who has a long-term vision, values transparency and collaboration, is growth oriented and remains focused on institutional core values when making decisions.
  • Campus communicator who can deliver complex financial and administrative information in understandable formats to a wide range of audiences (e.g., students, faculty, staff, donors, state/city officials).  Individual should value and practice proactive, consistent, and open sharing of information.


  • Lead the institution in long term financial planning that is aligned with the strategic planning process and results in a model that is sustainable and aligned with long term institutional goals and values.
  • Initiate ideas for alternative revenue streams/funding sources and solutions that assist individual units and the institution with meeting their mission and goals.  Bring together institutional leaders from both campuses to collaboratively assess ideas and ensure data is provided to make strategic decisions.
  • Develop, implement, and lead a budget planning process that is wholistic, transparent, and genuinely values input from all institutional constituents (faculty, students, staff, administration). Budget process should strategically consider all revenue streams available (general fund, student fees, etc.) and incorporate the unique budget needs of two campuses.
  • Strategically budget resources in alignment with institutional goals and lead ongoing review of budgets as institutional plans evolve.
  • Develop/maintain accounting processes that equitably allocate shared costs and resources between campuses, divisions and departments (e.g., cost of shared staff between campuses, indirect cost allocation).  Ensure dedicated resources (e.g., student fees) are allocated and used for their approved purpose and openly reported to campus constituents.
  • Develop and employ tools and reports needed for institutional leaders/budget managers to track resources and perform fiscal modeling (e.g., budget to actual reports, position tracking reports, program cost analysis).  Ensure data are delivered in formats that are easily accessible and easy to interpret.
  • Re-evaluate business processes within the division, focusing on end-user satisfaction while maintaining compliance and fiscal accountability.
  • Educate campus community on the fiscal makeup of the institution (e.g., how state support is allocated, how enrollment impacts finances, how resources are allocated between BSU and NTC).  Be proactive and transparent in sharing fiscal challenges and opportunities for the institution.


  • Lead BSU and NTC in updating long term facility master plans for both campuses that allocate physical resources to meet the institution’s strategic plans. Incorporate resulting resource needs into the financial planning process.
  • Advance institutional priorities of student success; diversity, equity, and inclusion including accessibility; and environmental sustainability in all facility related planning and work.
  • Ensure proactive communication with leadership, students, faculty, staff, and community/state officials on schedules for building and grounds maintenance and planned building improvement projects.


  • Lead the BSU and NTC campuses in implementation of the new administrative software system.
  • Lead the institution in development of a long-term Information Technology master plan that is aligned with the mission and vision of the institution.  Incorporate resulting resource needs into the financial planning process.


  • Bachelor’s or Master’s degree in a related field to business administration, finance, or accounting.
  • Minimum of five (5) years of progressive administrative and leadership experience in managing a complex fiscal operation.
  • Relevant experience in budgeting and financial management
  • Demonstrated ability to work with diverse constituents and promote a just, equitable, and inclusive workplace environment
  • Experience with and/or transferable skills in facilities planning, management, and maintenance
  • Professional experience implementing and administering contracts
  • Evidence of continuing professional education, affiliations, and/or certifications relevant to the position
  • Experience related to issues of sustainability and environmental safety
  • Evidence of supervisory skill including fostering continuing professional development among employees
  • Evidence of effective communication skills including positive, effective interpersonal communication—speaking, listening, reading, and writing


  • Experience in four-year and/or two-year higher education in budgeting and financial management
  • Experience with safety, security, and emergency response planning
  • Professional level experience in securing external funding and capital bonding
  • Experience with financial aid
  • Experience with and/or evidence of successful collaborations with multiple stakeholders
  • Demonstrated success in institutional leadership

About the Institution


In the north woods, on the shores of Lake Bemidji, nestled within limitless natural beauty and surrounded by Minnesota’s three largest Indigenous nations, are Bemidji State University and Northwest Technical College. Located in Bemidji, Minnesota, these institutions provide a unique opportunity to support both a four-year, regional public university and a two-year technical college.  Bemidji State University has been ranked as one of the top 30 public institutions in the Midwest region by U.S. News & World Report for each of the past four years. BSU offers its diverse body of around 4,000 students a comprehensive spectrum of opportunities with more than 100 undergraduate degrees and emphasis areas in more than 50 areas of study, 14 pre-professional programs, 10 graduate programs, and 10 certificates.


As Bemidji State embarks upon its second century of service, our vision is simple: we educate people to lead inspired lives. To achieve this, BSU prioritizes a campus culture in which diversity is embraced and all people are safe, welcome, and validated. BSU also proactively engages with Indigenous communities in northern Minnesota and nationwide in pursuit of its goal to become a destination university. Northwest Technical College is one of only three pure technical colleges remaining in Minnesota, helping around 1,000 students each year align their education with their employment goals. NTC offers nearly 40 certificates, diplomas, and degrees in 20 programs across six career paths. For more than 50 years, NTC has prepared students for fulfilling careers in well-paying, in-demand fields. The college’s accessible, affordable, hands-on programs also help the region’s employers meet their ever-growing need for a highly skilled workforce. With an open-enrollment policy and affordable tuition, NTC meets students where they are with a convenient mix of on-campus, online, and hybrid courses.


Through a shared services alignment, NTC students can take advantage of services, support, activities, and opportunities at BSU that expand and enhance their college experience — such as full access to BSU’s library and the ability to live in BSU’s on-campus resident housing. BSU and NTC employees are represented by eight bargaining units, including individual faculty unions representing each institution. These unions represent and advocate on behalf of around 650 employees, fostering an effective and collaborative shared governance environment. BSU and NTC are members of the Minnesota State system of 30 colleges and seven universities, encompassing a total of 54 campuses in 47 Minnesota communities. The third-largest system of higher education in the nation, Minnesota State annually serves more than 340,000 students.


Land Acknowledgment Statement


We acknowledge that Bemidji State University is located on land and water that is the current and ancestral homeland of the Ojibwe and Dakota. We acknowledge the painful history of genocide, forced assimilation, and efforts to alienate the Indigenous inhabitants from their territory here. We honor and respect the many diverse Indigenous peoples still connected to this land, retained tribal sovereignty, treaty rights, and cultural resilience. Indigenous people are spiritual and physical caretakers of this land to which we all belong. Bemidji State University respects these sacred lands, stands with the community members from these Nations, and will fight injustice in all its forms.


Living in the Area


Bemidji State University and Northwest Technical College are located amid the lakes and forests of northern Minnesota. Bemidji State occupies a wooded campus along the western shore of Lake Bemidji, while Northwest Technical College lies just three miles east, near Bemidji’s robust industrial district.  When settling the Bemidji area in 1750, the Ojibwe people named the lake Bemidjigamaag, a word that translates to English as “a lake with crossing waters,” as the Mississippi River flows in from the south and exits on the east. While folk legends claim Lake Bemidji was formed in Paul Bunyan’s footprint as he logged his way west, BSU professors will say it was simply the result in the last stage of glaciation in Minnesota.


Bemidji is a tight-knit community possessing all the charm and character of a college town. Named after the Ojibwe Chief Shaynowishkung, the city is located between three American Indian tribal nations: the Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe, the Red Lake Nation and the White Earth Nation. While the city of Bemidji proper claims a population of around 15,000, as a regional hub it provides goods, services, and employment to nearly 100,000 Minnesotans. Located just minutes away from a thriving downtown Bemidji, both the BSU and NTC campus communities have convenient access to affordable restaurants, fine-dining experiences, cozy coffee shops, grocery stores — including a natural foods co-op — city parks, and nearly unlimited outdoor recreational opportunities. Small, locally-owned shops and art sculptures line the streets of downtown Bemidji, while national chains can also be found in and around the Bemidji area. The historic Paul Bunyan Playhouse has a calendar of classic shows, restaurants offer weekly live music performances, the First Friday Art Walk provides a tour of new monthly art exhibits, and annual festivals bring the community together throughout the year.  Additionally, the north woods setting means students, staff, and faculty have a variety of activities available at their fingertips year-round.


With more than 400 lakes within 25 miles of the city, — and a 240-acre research forest owned by BSU — there is easy access to kayaking, canoeing, swimming, boating, paddle boarding, hunting, hiking, biking, foraging, fishing, and more. An expansive network of multi-use trail systems are available for running, cross country skiing, single-track or fat-tire biking, and skijoring. Further, downhill skiing, snowboarding, and tubing lies just north of Bemidji at the Buena Vista Ski Area. Bemidji is also near two of Minnesota’s 66 state parks: Lake Bemidji State Park, which sits along Lake Bemidji’s northern shore, and Itasca State Park, home to the majestic Mississippi River Headwaters. Both parks are popular recreational and camping destinations where locals and tourists gather for sailing, swimming, and fishing during the summer months and skating, hockey, curling, and, yes, more fishing in the winter. Of course, no tour of Bemidji is complete without a visit to — and a selfie with — its two most famous residents: the iconic statues of Paul Bunyan and his trusty companion, Babe the Blue Ox. The famed duo, which has greeted visitors to Bemidji since 1937, are on the National Register of Historic Places and were once ranked by Kodak as the second most-photographed statues in America.


For further information about BSU visit or NTC at


To Apply 


For best consideration, please apply by December 2nd.


To be viewed by the search firm, you must apply directly at:

Please do not email applications.

Applications will be reviewed as they are received and should include a cover letter and curriculum vita. Ideally cover letters should not exceed two pages. All applications are treated confidentially.

Inquiries, referrals, and nominations are treated confidentially:

Inquiries and questions: Please send to

Nominations and referrals: Please send to


Institution’s EEO Statement

Bemidji State University and Northwest Technical College prohibit discrimination and sexual violence of any kind. Contact the Center for Civil Rights Investigation Office if you have concerns regarding discrimination and/or sexual violence. Per Minnesota State System Procedure 1B.3.1, all universities and colleges must provide contact information of their Title IX Coordinator.

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