Jackson’s position will now be two

by Emily Babcock

Two individuals will temporarily fill one vacancy left by JoAnne Jackson, former senior vice president of finance and operations, University President Mark Yudof announced Friday.
Yudof selected Terrence O’Connor, University associate vice president and controller, and Eric Kruse, vice president for Facilities Management, to replace Jackson, who resigned at the end of January.
“It’s a wonderful opportunity,” Kruse said. “I think it is a great opportunity to provide great service.”
O’Connor and Kruse will begin their new positions this week, assuming approval by the Board of Regents.
The Office of the Senior Vice President for Finance and Operations will now be split into two separate divisions. It was difficult to find one person to run both positions, Kruse said.
The president has not yet decided how to structure the office for the long term, however. The search for the permanent appointments will begin following the organization of the department, Yudof said in a prepared statement.
O’Connor will run financial operations under both the offices of the treasurer and the controller. His position includes accounting services, payroll, the bursar, asset and debt management, risk management and real estate.
The two offices can now be run more effectively because of the two distinct skills sets involved, O’Connor said.
Kruse will still run Facilities Management, but will now be in charge of the offices of master planning, health and safety — which includes Parking and Transportation Services — and University Police. University Services, such as the bookstores, purchasing and campus mail, will also be under the jurisdiction of Kruse.
Improving financial services across the board as well as supporting Yudof are on the top of O’Connor’s priorities, he said.
“I would definitely like to support the president’s initiatives, and work on improving (the University’s) status as an institution,” O’Connor said.
The finance department needs to become more user-friendly, he said, adding that he will try to improve customer service as well as provide more financial support to new systems.
Kruse said he also looks forward to his appointment and the division. He added that Yudof’s division of finance and operations was not a big surprise, having already been done at various universities, Kruse said.
“It is another way of organizing the business and providing the services,” Kruse said.