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Vice President, Financial Planning

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The University of Southern California (USC) seeks outstanding candidates for the new position of Vice President for Financial Planning who will report to the Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, James Staten. Staten recently joined USC after serving as Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer at the Yale New Haven Health System where he led the financial functions over a 15 year period when the System revenues grew from $900 million to nearly $4 billion.

Under the aegis of the Senior Vice President, the Vice President for Financial Planning (VPFP) will lead the equivalent of an internal consulting group that will coordinate all financial planning functions for the University (operational and academic areas) and USC’s health system, Keck Medicine. This will involve focused business planning and analytical support for new programs, senior recruitments, and projects in the University and at Keck Medicine. The VPFP will work with the other university senior leaders on major assignments and will support strategy and competitive planning on behalf of USC and the health system.

This is an exciting time to join the University – USC’s academic programs create an auspicious future for USC as an indisputably academically elite global university; the University’s health system (Keck Medicine which includes a tertiary hospital, a cancer hospital, a community hospital, and a group practice with 750 physicians) is growing and in tandem with the Keck School of Medicine is building a top tier academic medical center; a major fundraising campaign which will raise $6 billion has crossed the $5 billion mark; and USC’s storied athletic program produces national championships at a greater rate than any other program in the country.

This is an outstanding opportunity for an accomplished individual seeking to apply leading edge financial and strategic planning skills to help shape USC’s competitive strategy and support operational excellence.

The University of Southern California

USC is the oldest private research university in the western United States, established in 1880. Located in Los Angeles, a global center for arts, technology and international trade, USC is one of the world’s leading private research universities. USC has established itself as a great institution of higher education, a place of discovery and creation of new knowledge, a leader in bringing new discoveries and intellectual property to the market for public benefit, and as a leader in preparing students for the rapidly evolving global economy.

USC is home to the Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences and 21 academic schools and units, including the Keck School of Medicine, the School of Pharmacy, the Ostrow School of Dentistry, the Viterbi School of Engineering, the School of Cinematic Arts, and the Annenberg School for Communication. The Marshall School of Business, the School of Social Work, and the Price School of Public Policy also offer nationally ranked programs with important emphasis on health-related research.

USC’s annual operating budget exceeds $4 billion and its endowment is $4.6 billion. USC enrolls over 40,000 students and has over 4,000 full-time faculty and 13,000 staff and it is the largest private employer in Los Angeles. There are more than 375,000 living alumni in the “Trojan Family”.

USC’s University Park Campus (UPC) is located in the heart of Los Angeles’ Downtown Arts and Education Corridor. The Health Sciences Campus (HSC), located just east of downtown Los Angeles, is home to Keck Medicine, the Keck School of Medicine, the School of Pharmacy, and acclaimed programs in physical therapy and occupational therapy (which are both ranked #1 by U.S. News & World Report). The flagship hospital of the Los Angeles County Department of Health Services, Los Angeles County + USC Medical Center, is located adjacent to the HSC.

The Position

Broadly, and across the University, the VPFP will: lead business plan development and multi-year University and Keck Medicine projections; lead long range financial planning; evaluate proposed investments in information technology; and prepare the financial analysis and planning that underpins USC’s strategy and growth plans. With regard to the work on USC’s strategy plans, the VPFP will work closely with many of the University’s most senior leaders to assist them in developing plans to enhance and expand the University’s quality and stature among leading research institutions.

The VPFP also will devote a significant proportion of his/her time developing and leading an internal consulting group that will support Keck Medicine and USC’s other health care endeavors. The VPFP will be front and center on every major investment decision at the University or Keck Medicine. For example:

  • Providing financial planning support to operational improvement efforts and new program development (e.g., new clinical product line introductions) in Keck Medicine’s various programs and locations;
  • Conducting due diligence and financial analysis on merger and acquisition options, strategic partnerships, and new reimbursement models; preparing recommendations for USC senior leaders;
  • Assisting deans and senior faculty in health and life sciences programs to analyze current academic and research efforts and plan enhancements and expansions; and
  • Evolving existing funds flow model for transactions between the University and Keck Medicine, and between the medical school and Keck Medicine.

The VPFP also will assist the Senior Vice President/CFO on preparing materials for Board and Board committee presentations, commercial and investment banks, and rating agencies.

To accomplish these broad objectives, the VPFP will lead the internal team described above that will include skilled analysts and planners who are experts in university and academic medical center finances, current and future payment/reimbursement methodologies, demographic and other changes and challenges for the University, and competitive forces that effect USC’s long term plans.


The ideal VPFP is an experienced health system financial executive with strategic and executive capabilities as well as significant experience in/with research universities and/or academic medical centers. The VPFP will lead through influence and persuasion to develop and manage interwoven programs across a wide range of activities.

He/she should have the ability, tact, aptitude and fortitude to ask tough but thoughtful questions, probe nuances for clarification, sustain the focus of the team, make difficult decisions, and communicate in ways that fosters productive candor and teamwork.

Specific additional qualifications include:

  • Successful track record in financial analysis, planning, and management and the ability to navigate in universities and academic health settings with both vertical and horizontal complexity;
  • Experience working with cabinet level officers as well as boards that will both contribute to the planning work as well as be the consumers of the analyses, plans, and recommendations;
  • Strong track record in health care finance;
  • Successful track record of introducing new strategic uses of information and technology;
  • Comfort working in matrixed organizations;
  • A participatory leadership style that models the values of service, initiative, and collaboration; and
  • High ethical standards.

Please send nominations and applications to:

Nicholas Brill and Jennifer McDonough
Brill Neumann Associates

USC is an equal-opportunity educator and employer, proudly pluralistic and firmly committed to providing equal opportunity for outstanding persons of every race, gender, creed and background. The University particularly encourages members of underrepresented groups,
veterans and individuals with disabilities to apply.


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