POTSDAM – In spite of earlier protestations that they could not find a suitable candidate to take on the job, SUNY Canton and SUNY Potsdam have appointed the first chief financial officer to serve both campuses.
Natalie Higley has been selected as the Vice President of Business Affairs and Administrative Services for both institutions. She will begin service on July 1.
“The position presents a unique and innovative opportunity to join the SUNY Potsdam and SUNY Canton teams,” Higley said. “I look forward to working closely with both campus communities.”
In the newly created role, Higley will work for both SUNY Potsdam and SUNY Canton. This hiring continues the implementation of shared services between the campuses, through the SUNY Campus Alliance Network.
In March, The SUNY Potsdam College Council told SUNY authorities in Albany that they cannot find one chief financial officer for both the Potsdam and Canton campuses as SUNY had wanted, but will need one full-time officer for themselves. But they have overcome that obstacle.
Higley will be responsible for maintaining both colleges’ fiscal health and smooth administrative functioning. Units reporting to the CFO on both campuses include financial and business services, budget, internal controls, physical plant and facilities, purchasing, payables, human resources, payroll, Research Foundation operations, and auxiliary services.
Higley will serve on of both colleges’ management teams.
SUNY Potsdam President Dr. John F. Schwaller said, “Our campus has led the charge for financial transparency and resource accountability, and I am confident that Natalie is dedicated to continuing that commitment.”
SUNY Canton President Dr. Joseph L. Kennedy said, “The hiring of a joint position at the vice presidential level is a significant step toward reducing our combined administrative costs to the benefit of the collective student body. We are making commendable efforts to meet SUNY’s goals.”
Higley has more than 14 years of experience in executive management overseeing finances at private manufacturers and public universities.
Higley is currently working toward her doctorate in higher education administration at Georgia Southern University.
The colleges recently announced the hiring of a joint veterans and military service coordinator to extend educational opportunities to former and active armed forces members at both campuses.