Search for Assistant Vice President of Financial Services
De Pere, Wisconsin
St. Norbert College, one of the top-ranked Catholic liberal arts colleges in the nation, seeks a forward thinking, technically astute, and imaginative leader for the newly created position of Assistant Vice President for Financial Services (AVP). As a skilled finance and accounting leader, the inaugural AVP will provide creative fiscal and strategic oversight to further the College’s mission and continued impact. In this highly visible role, the AVP will collaborate with all areas of the College, serve as a trusted advisor to both administrative and academic leadership, and be a key leader in advancing the College’s commitment to equity, diversity, and inclusion. The AVP will have a unique opportunity to plan for the College’s sustainable and impactful future, while making recommendations that will inform strategic thinking and future direction.
Founded in 1898, St. Norbert College remains the only college in the world sponsored by the Norbertine Order, a global Catholic order devoted to living in community and serving others. Today, the College offers more than 2,100 students from 26 countries the opportunity to pursue more than 80 fields of study, study abroad in 29 countries, compete in 23 varsity sports and participate in more than 90 student clubs and organizations. St. Norbert is on track to enroll one of the largest, most diverse, and academically prepared first-year classes, with an average high school grade point average of 3.57. The College is financially strong and well managed. For fiscal year ended May 31, 2020, the College’s net assets were $294 million, and total endowment assets were $148 million. The College’s total operating expenses for fiscal year 2020 were $74.5 million.
St. Norbert is located in De Pere, Wisconsin, a community known for its gorgeous river views, boutique-stye shopping, lively restaurants and many opportunities for outdoor recreation. The Fox River Trails runs through the city and extends along the river through downtown Green Bay. Green Bay, five minutes north of De Pere, is an economic hub of Northeastern Wisconsin, and offers outstanding business, cultural, and athletic opportunities, and a vibrant quality of life.
Reporting to the Vice President for Business and Finance/Chief Financial Officer (CFO), the AVP serves as the deputy and thought partner to the CFO and is a key member of the CFO’s Senior Leadership Team. The AVP oversees a staff of 11 and is directly responsible for the departments of Accounting Services and Student Account Services, including cash and treasury management, investment and endowment management, and capital finance management. The AVP will also partner closely with the Director of Financial Planning & Analysis to support budget and forecast development, analysis and reporting.
The AVP will address a set of key opportunities and challenges to help ensure the College’s continuing success and future growth, including creating state of the art business operations, systems, policies and procedures to advance organizational efficiency and effectiveness; support staff development; serving as a strategic partner to the CFO; engaging with the Board finance committee. The AVP will be charged with bringing vision, direction, and a long-term strategic thinking to the finance area of the College; managing diverse revenue streams with efficiency and accuracy; ensuring a robust cash flow while maintaining internal and external regulations; and providing exemplary service to all departments and constituencies of the College. In addition, the AVP will play a critical role in championing and supporting the implementation and optimization of the College’s new Enterprise Resource Planning System, Workday.
The successful candidate will be an experienced financial and accounting leader with a successful track record of at least 11 years of progressive experience. The AVP will ideally bring a knowledge of and experience with nonprofit financial accounting and its intricacies and complexities, including familiarity with diversified streams of funding, financial reporting, and accounting. Success in this role will be measured by strong communication and interpersonal skills, and a transparent, straight forward and inclusive decision-making and management style, a can-do attitude and hands-on work ethic, and demonstrated strategic leadership capabilities. The AVP will also possess a strong commitment to the College’s mission and values. The successful candidate will have a bachelor’s degree in finance, accounting or business. A master’s degree and/or CPA is preferred.
St. Norbert College has retained the services of Isaacson, Miller—a national executive search firm—to assist in conducting this important search and to help identify outstanding candidates. All confidential inquiries, nominations/referrals, and resumes with cover letters should be directed to the search firm as indicated at the end of this document.
ST. NORBERT COLLEGE
As one of the nation’s top Catholic liberal arts colleges, St. Norbert builds on the beliefs and practices of an ancient religious order while responding to the current needs of its students and communities. St. Norbert College embraces the Norbertine ideal of communio and provides an educational environment that fosters intellectual, spiritual, and personal development, both inside and outside the classroom. Communio challenges individuals to engage in open dialogue, consultation, and collaboration, and encourages members to show respect, mutual esteem, trust, sincerity, faith, and responsibility – the foundation for the deep sense of community found at St. Norbert. The college promotes the development of the whole person by cultivating practices of study, reflection, prayer, wellness, play, and action.
Today at St. Norbert College, the spirit of Norbert of Xanten, who founded the Norbertine order of priests in the twelfth century, lives through this modern community dedicated to transforming and empowering its students. The college has seen remarkable development in the past decade, particularly the construction and renovation of more than $150 million in campus facilities and infrastructure, including the Ariens Family Welcome Center, the Cassandra Voss Center, Dudley Birder Hall, the Gehl-Mulva Science Centerand its South Teaching Wing, Gries Hall, Michels Commons, the Mulva Family Fitness & Sports Center, the Mulva Library, Schneider Stadium, and Todd Wehr Hall.
St. Norbert College employs 183 faculty, 125 of whom are full-time. The student-to-faculty ratio is approximately 13:1. The student body consists of 2,000 undergraduate students from 25 states, 17 countries, and five continents, as well as 72 graduate students.
St. Norbert College is known for its academic excellence, national and international focus, and leadership and service opportunities. Occupying a beautiful, 113-aces riverside campus in De Pere, Wisconsin, a community contiguous with the city of Green Bay. St. Norbert enjoys strong and growing enrollments, and is expected to welcome one of the largest first-year classes in the College’s history this fall.
The College’s fundraising has been excellent and has included a recent $30 million transformational gift added to the institution’s endowment, which has grown from $38 million in 1998 to $148 million in 2020.
St. Norbert College is financially strong and well managed. For fiscal year ended May 31, 2020, the College’s net assets were $294 million, and total endowment assets were $148 million. Total operating expenses for fiscal year 2020 were $74.5 million.
ST. NORBERT COLLEGE THREE TRADITIONS
Integral to a St. Norbert College education is the experience of its three core traditions: The Catholic tradition, which calls the institution to:
uphold the sacred dignity of all persons
seek truth through an ongoing dialogue between faith, reason, and culture
utilize knowledge to promote a Gospel vision of justice
The liberal arts tradition, which calls the institution to:
dialogue with diverse cultures, perspectives, and beliefs
cultivate a love of lifelong learning inspired by excellent teaching
develop students who can think critically as responsible members of society
The Norbertine tradition, which calls the institution to:
pray and reflect communally and individually, welcoming all to participate
seek peace and reconciliation in the spirit of Norbert
respond to the needs of the institution’s global and local communities
ST. NOBERT COLLEGE POINTS OF PRIDE
St. Norbert College’s points of pride include:
Being named to the John Templeton Foundation Honor Roll for Character-Building Colleges as a college with exemplary programs that inspire students to lead ethical and civic minded
Consistently ranked among the top liberal arts colleges in the nation and among the top echelon of Catholic colleges nationwide.
Recognized as a College of Distinction for its engaged students, great teaching, vibrant community, and successful outcomes.
Noted by Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching for its community of
Norbert consistently achieves one of the best on-time graduation rates in the Midwest.
97% of students receive some form of financial aid
Norbert was recognized by the Center for Student Opportunity’s College Access & Opportunity Guide for its commitment to serving and supporting students from first generation, underserved backgrounds.
com ranked St. Norbert in the top 10 of its list of best college food in America.
92 percent of students are employed, attending graduate school or engaged in full-time volunteer or military service one year after graduation
ST. NORBERT COLLEGE LEADERSHIP
Brian J. Bruess, a 1990 graduate of St. Norbert, is only the second St. Norbert graduate to hold the position of president. The Rev. Dennis Burke, O. Praem., ’26 was the first.
Bruess served in various leadership roles at St. Catherine University (St. Kate’s) before returning to St. Norbert. During his 21-year tenure at St. Kate’s, he was executive vice president and chief operating officer. Bruess also was responsible for areas including enrollment management, student affairs, information technology, athletics, finance and administration. He built a reputation for a collaborative and innovative approach to planning and leadership; was the principal architect of efforts resulting in 15 consecutive years of record student enrollment; has an unrelenting focus on student learning, which resulted in strong student retention and increased diversity; and was instrumental in attaining and sustaining St. Kate’s financial strength.
In 2006, he was invited to the Council of Independent Colleges Presidential Vocation & Institutional Mission program for prospective college presidents and, in 2010, was invited to the Association of Catholic Colleges & Universities Rome Seminar. Prior to his time at St. Kate’s, Bruess served in a variety of leadership roles at Ohio University.
Bruess has been honored for his contributions to higher education with the Minnesota College Personnel Association’s 2005 Lud Spolyar Distinguished Service Award and the 2002 Linda Schrempp Alberg Award.
He received a Bachelor of Arts in sociology and psychology at St. Norbert College and both a master’s and a doctoral degree from Ohio University.
Vice President of Business and Finance/Chief Financial Officer
Autumn Anfang serves as vice president of business and finance/chief financial officer at St. Norbert College. She began on Aug. 5, 2019. In this role, Anfang serves as an integral member of the president’s cabinet, overseeing the financial and business performance of the college.
Anfang leads the college’s business and finance division, which is responsible for finance, budgeting, and investments and endowment management, as well as business operations including human resources, legal, risk and property management, auxiliary services and facilities.
Anfang has 23 years of experience providing financial, operational and organizational leadership in for-profit, non-profit and higher education institutions. Most recently, she served as Marquette University’s director of business management and analysis and was responsible for leading strategic initiatives. Prior to joining Marquette, she served as the assistant vice chancellor of business administration for student affairs, auxiliary services, athletics and enrollment management at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Before entering the higher-education industry in 2011, she served in chief financial officer and finance leadership roles in the non-profit, government, telecommunications and banking sectors.
Anfang has a master’s degree in accounting from the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater and has been a licensed certified public accountant since 1991. She earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration from the University of Georgia.
ROLE OF THE ASSISTANT VICE PRESIDENT FOR FINANCIAL SERVICES
In this pivotal new role, the AVP will serve as the deputy to the CFO and provide financial and accounting management, technical/operational expertise, and strategic leadership to the organization, while overseeing a team of 11 accounting and finance professionals. AVP will be the primary advisor to the CFO on accounting, audit, reporting, cash management, investments, capital finance, federal and state compliance, internal controls, and financial policies & procedures. In addition, the AVP will support and assist with a wide range of financial matters, such as managing special projects and strategic initiatives; serving on ad hoc teams; and making presentations to leadership groups, including the president’s cabinet and board of trustees. Specific areas of responsibility include the following:
Investment Management: The AVP will oversee the investment management and performance optimization of the College’s endowment funds and other investment programs, such as its capital fund and gift programs, in partnership with the College’s investment consultant. This includes developing investment policies, target and strategic asset allocations, policy and performance benchmarks, and risk management practices to ensure the fund’s principal is preserved and maintained, thus enabling the College to continue to provide strong academic programs for both current and future students. AVP will be responsible for reporting on endowment and investment performance to senior leadership and the board. AVP will coordinates the Investment Committee activities and responsibilities. Additionally, the AVP will partner with the College’s Advancement Office to establish and maintain policies supporting endowments.
Accounting Services, Student Account Services, and Financial Systems: The AVP will provide oversight and leadership to Accounting Services and Student Account Services. The AVP will supervise financial systems, financial reporting, policies and standards, and compliance with federal and state laws and regulations; ensure the development and adherence of internal controls necessary to mitigate risk to protect the assets of the college; and manage /treasury management & reporting. The AVP will play a key role in supporting the implementation and optimization of Workday ERP. The AVP will be a champion for change management. As such, she or he will lead the organizational development of departments including the professional development of staff and continuous process improvements ensuring organizational excellence.
Budget Development and Long-Range Planning: The AVP will partner closely with the Director of Financial Planning & Analysis, who has a dotted line report to the AVP. The AVP will assist with budget development and long-range planning by providing insight, analysis and reporting specific to historical and current financials as well as with the endowment spending rates and the capital fund, including the statistical evaluation of the spending rate, and the assessment of the long-term viability of the capital fund. AVP will support ratio analysis and development of the College’s financial dashboard.
Capital Financing: The AVP will supports the capital financing process including identification and assessment of capital funding sources and structures, management of tax-exempt bond issuance process, evaluation of related interest rate hedges, and development of financial models to evaluate proposed capital projects.
KEY OPPORTUNITIES AND CHALLENGES
The new AVP will be a forward thinking, mission-driven leader with exceptional financial expertise and communication skills, who embraces the work of the College and has a passion for its mission. To succeed, this individual will be expected to address the following key opportunities and challenges:
Serve as a strategic partner to the CFO, and other members of the College leadership team
Bring vision, direction, and a long-term strategic thinking to the financial services area of the College
Create state of the art business operations, process, systems, policies and procedures to advance organizational efficiency and effectiveness across the College
Support staff development and foster a positive learning environment
Effectively engage with the Board finance committee
Manage diverse revenue streams with efficiency and accuracy, ensuring a robust cash flow while maintaining adherence to government regulations
Provide exemplary service to all departments and constituencies of the College
THE SUCCESSFUL CANDIDATE
While no candidate will embody every quality, the successful candidate will bring many, if not all the following professional qualifications and personal attributes:
Bachelor's degree in Accounting or Finance required; Master’s in Accounting, Finance, or Business preferred; CPA
11+ years of accounting and financial management experience, preferably in higher education or other complex non-profit organization.
Progressive management experience that includes leading a department with broad organizational impact
Experience leading campus wide/cross-departmental initiatives
Demonstrated problem solving and analytical skills necessary to perform complex financial analysis, identify trends, and assess impact on college operations
Mastery of current generally accepted accounting principles and financial reporting standards and GASB pronouncements
Knowledge of computerized accounting systems and ability to utilize computer hardware and
Knowledge of computer programs (Microsoft Office, Google Apps) and ability to learn upgrades and new programs as needed.
Proven success in implementing continuous improvements and re-engineering process and procedures within an ERP
Prior experience in financial systems implementations or enhancements
Oversight of investment portfolios and endowment funds
Demonstrated commitment to diversity, equity and
Demonstrated leadership skills
Proven leadership, supervisory, communication, interpersonal and organizational
Skilled at organizing projects and see them through to
Ability to exercise good judgement and decisions in a fast-paced environment
Capacity to interact professionally with coworkers and customers, particularly in complex and delicate situations.
Ability to multitask, meet specific deadlines, and prioritize tasks and
All Confidential inquiries, nominations/referrals, and resumes with cover letters can be sent electronically and in confidence to:
St. Norbert College is an equal-opportunity employer and is committed to enhancing the diversity of our people, ideas, and talents. We welcome individuals with diverse experiences, backgrounds, and skills to join our college community in our pursuit of inclusion and excellence. Women and individuals from underrepresented groups are strongly encouraged to apply.