Apr 182010
 
Authors: Kirsten Silveira

In an effort to trim administrative costs and improve CSU’s communication with its constituents, President Tony Frank reworked his cabinet and eliminated three positions in another department.

In an e-mail to the university community Friday, Frank announced that he would consolidate three positions in the Extension Department into one position, the director of Extension –– a move that will save CSU $650,000. The department works with CSU professors to provide the community with research-based information on issues that affect Colorado.

The assistant director of Community Relations, the director of Extension and the associate director of Extension positions, currently held Joanne Littlefield, Deborah Young and Jan Carroll, respectively, will be cut.

Of the $650,000 saved, $250,000 will be absorbed by the Extension Department and $400,000 will go into the general university budget, said CSU spokesperson Brad Bohlander in an e-mail to the Collegian.

Lou Swanson, current vice provost of Outreach, will assume the responsibilities of the three eliminated positions in the role Extension director. Swanson’s position within Frank’s Cabinet will shift to vice president of Engagement.

Frank said in the e-mail that the reorganization would improve on-campus leadership, while cultivating better communication with CSU’s partners.

In order to help CSU cope with current challenges, including the higher education crisis, Frank also moved the existing position of vice president of Public Affairs under the title of vice president of External Relations.

Tom Milligan, who served on former CSU President Al Yate’s Cabinet, will assume the role for $225,000 a year. The position formerly paid $150,000 a year, Bohlander said.

Current Vice President of Public Affairs Mark Minor will work under Milligan as associate vice president of External Relations.

In addition to the administrative makeover, Frank will eliminate funding to the Systems Solution Group over a two-year period. SSG provides administrative support to faculty interested in research.

“I think there’s a tendency within academia to look inward and to believe that if we do our jobs in the classroom and laboratory and studio well, the rest – reputation, communication, advocacy, public support – will take care of itself,” he said in the e-mail.

Now seems like “particularly dangerous” time to be out of touch with constituents, he added.

The university, Frank said, has been successful in raising just more than $325 million in donations for its capital fundraising campaign. The goal of the initiative is to reach $500 in private gifts by 2012 for scholarship funding, endowed chairs and campus improvement projects.

In the e-mail, Frank praised out-of-state recruitment success, relationships with local government and the efforts of coaches to improve CSU Athletics.

Athletic Director Paul Kowalczyk signed another five-year contract with CSU, Frank said, and has the department, which has one of the smallest budgets in Mountain West Conference, “on the right track.”

Although the university is making strides in these areas, Frank said, there is room for improvement. In the coming years CSU needs to focus on philanthropy, athletic success and working with state and local government.

The current fiscal crunch, Frank said, leaves CSU’s budget minimally funded by state money and said the university’s relationship with legislators is critical.

Senior Reporter Kirsten Silveira can be reached at news@collegian.com.

 Posted by at 3:07 pm

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