Leath: Iowa State facing time of ‘unprecedented change’

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Iowa State Daily

Miles Lackey, chief of staff, discusses Iowa State’s plans for the 2014-15 year. 

Travis Charlson

ISU administration is going to have a new look when students and faculty return to campus in the fall of 2016. 

The Office of the Senior Vice President for Business and Finance will undergo some new changes this summer, along with several other positions seeing new leadership, according to a release last week from President Steven Leath.

“These changes result from the fact that Iowa State is experiencing a time of unprecedented change in senior leadership,” Leath said in a campus-wide email Thursday.

The office, which will be vacated upon the retirement of Warren Madden, will be restructured into two separate offices — the Division of University Services and the Division of Finance.

Current Chief of Staff Miles Lackey has already been appointed to take over the financial division, and will fill the role of chief of staff/chief financial officer in the Division of Finance.

The search for the senior vice president for University Services is already underway and is expected to be completed by June 30 — the date of Madden’s retirement — with Lackey serving in an interim role if the position hasn’t been filled by then. 

The university will lose 70 years of combined experience with the retirements of Madden and Tom Hill, senior vice president for Student Affairs.

Madden said the timing lends the opportunity to look at the governance structure of the university.

“When I started, enrollment was around 8,000 to 10,000. Now it’s more than three times that big,” Madden said. “The things we have to accommodate for are very different today and more complex.”

Martino Harmon, who has moved into the role of senior vice president for Student Affairs left vacant by Hill, said despite all of the administrative changes, the scope of what he and his colleagues do is going to remain relative to the university’s strategic plan. 

“Some responsibilities might be tweaked,” Harmon said. “But we’re going to continue to do what we can do to make the Iowa State experience as best as possible for students.”

Some additional changes include the Director of Equal Opportunity will report to the Vice President for Diversity and Inclusion, the Office of University Marketing will report to the Office of University Relations and the State Relations Officer will assume the role of Government Relations Officer.

“I am confident these changes will allow us to become even more efficient and transparent,” Leath wrote in his release. “We strive to capture and invest maximum resources in our core academic mission.”