The University of Tennessee System

Knoxville, TN   |   October 4, 2021

About the UT System

The University of Tennessee is comprised of campuses at Knoxville, Chattanooga, Martin and Southern; the Health Science Center at Memphis; the Space Institute at Tullahoma; and the statewide Institute of Agriculture and Institute for Public Service.

The UT System has a presence in each of Tennessee’s 95 counties. Through the combined force of education, research and outreach, the University serves students, business and industry, schools, governments, organizations and citizens statewide.

The University of Tennessee System, through its multiple campuses and institutes, serves the people of Tennessee and beyond through the discovery, communication and application of knowledge. The System is committed to providing undergraduate, graduate and professional education programs in a diverse learning environment that prepares students to be leaders in a global society. The UT System’s delivery of education, discovery, outreach and public service contributes to the economic, social and environmental well-being of all Tennesseans.

The Board of Trustees is the governing body of the University of Tennessee, overseeing the educational and operational activities of the statewide University system. The 12- member board is comprised of 1 ex officio member, who is the Commissioner of Agriculture for the State of Tennessee, and 11 appointed members, one of whom is a non- voting student member. The Secretary of the University is the principal staff liaison between the University administration and the Board of Trustees.

Everywhere you look, UT is making a sizeable impact in the communities it serves. Below are several examples of initiatives recently undertaken:

  • UT Promise is an undergraduate scholarship program guaranteeing free tuition and mandatory fees for qualifying Tennessee residents attending UT’s campuses in Knoxville, Chattanooga, Pulaski, Martin and Memphis. This innovative scholarship covers a student’s tuition and mandatory fees after other financial aid is applied to students who qualify for HOPE and whose family household income is under $50,000 a year. UT Promise is a student-success oriented scholarship program that requires students to complete volunteer service hours and meet with a volunteer mentor each semester to ensure a successful student experience.
  • In Fiscal Year 2022 UT received the largest state appropriation in its history of $701 million including funding to support a four percent pay increase for employees.  The University enjoys sustained state support in capital projects as well.
  • On July 1, 2021 the UT System added a fifth comprehensive campus when Martin Methodist University became UT Southern.  Located in Pulaski TN, this new UT campus will serve rural counties in south central Tennessee.
  • Enterprise Resource Planning: After two decades of service, the University of Tennessee’s Systems Applications and Products platform—known throughout the university as IRIS—will no longer be supported in 2025 as software providers are moving the industry to cloud-based solutions. Given the central role that IRIS plays in processing all of UT’s financial and human resources activities, UT officials began planning in 2019 for the transition to a new, cloud-based enterprise resource planning (ERP) system, known as DASH (Dynamic Administrative Systems for Higher Ed).
  • In an effort to increase openness regarding information and data, UT launched Transparent UT. This included a website and online portal for individuals to submit new ideas. A “data dashboard” builds on the commitment to providing greater and easier access to information for UT’s faculty, staff, students, and the communities they serve.
  • UT has doubled down on their commitment to Mental Health and Wellness with a gathering of more than 100 people across the UT System including chief academic officers, vice chancellors, deans, faculty, and staff; student government representatives; and representatives from the Tennessee Higher Education Commission, Oak Ridge National Laboratory and Tennessee Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services. David Arnold, National Association of Student Personnel Administrators assistant vice president for health, safety and well-being initiatives, served as the keynote speaker.

For more information on the University of Tennessee System, please visit website.

University Leadership

Randy Boyd, University of Tennessee President

Randy Boyd was appointed president of the University of Tennessee by the UT Board of Trustees March 27, 2020, following a sixteen-month period as interim president. Boyd took office Nov. 22 following the retirement of UT President Joe DiPietro. As UT’s 26th president, Boyd serves as the chief executive officer of a statewide university system. The flagship campus in Knoxville includes the Space Institute in Tullahoma and the statewide Institute of Agriculture. The UT System also includes campuses in Chattanooga and Martin; the Health Science Center in Memphis; and the Institute of Public Service. The UT System manages Oak Ridge National Laboratory through its UT-Battelle partnership.

Boyd is the founder of Radio Systems Corp., a Knoxville-based business. They have more than 800 employees, offices in six countries and produce pet related products under the brand names PetSafe, Invisible Fence and SportDOG. He also serves as chairman of Boyd Sports and is the owner of the Tennessee Smokies, Johnson City Cardinals, Greeneville Reds and Elizabethton Twins.

Boyd served as chairman of the Tennessee Higher Education Commission and as commissioner of the Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development. He was a founder and co-chair of the Governor’s Rural Taskforce, which exists to help state government and industry leaders find solutions to the biggest challenges facing rural Tennessee.

Boyd also served as Gov. Bill Haslam’s special adviser for higher education. He was the architect for Tennessee Promise and Drive to 55 and was the founder and chairman of Tennessee Achieves—all initiatives aimed at increasing the number of Tennesseans with post-secondary degrees to 55 percent by 2025 and decreasing financial hardship for Tennesseans pursuing degrees.

Through his philanthropy, Boyd also supports the Boyd Center for Business and Economic Research and the Anderson Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation’s Boyd Venture Challenge seed grant program for student entrepreneurs, both through the Haslam College of Business at UT Knoxville.

Boyd is the first in his family to graduate from college. He earned a bachelor’s degree in business with an emphasis on industrial management from UT Knoxville. He also earned a master’s degree in liberal studies with a focus on foreign policy from the University of Oklahoma.

Boyd and his wife, Jenny, live in Knoxville. They have two children and two grandchildren.

David Miller, Senior Vice President & CFO

David L. Miller joined the University of Tennessee as Chief Financial Officer (CFO) in January 2017 and was promoted to Senior Vice President and CFO in November 2019. Before joining the University of Tennessee, Miller served as vice president for administration and fiscal affairs at the University of Wisconsin System.

Miller’s 20-year tenure at the UW System includes, among other positions, serving as senior vice president for administration and fiscal affairs, associate vice president for capital planning and budget, and assistant vice president for university relations. Before transitioning to higher education, he spent time in government relations. He served the Wisconsin legislature for five years as a policy analyst and legislative aide and also worked as a legislative analyst for the Tennessee legislature.

The chief financial officer is responsible for the administration of all financial operations at the University. Primary responsibilities include development of financial and operational strategies; budgeting, accounting and reporting of all operations; enterprise resource planning; investment of University operating and endowment funds; directing capital outlay and maintenance programs; and overseeing system-wide IT operations.

Miller has a bachelor’s degree in political science from East Tennessee State University and a master’s in business administration from the University of Wisconsin, Madison.

The Opportunity

What an ideal time to be joining the University of Tennessee. President Randy Boyd is developing a plan to “ignite the greatest decade in the history of the University of Tennessee”, see here. In 2019, across the UT System, total enrollment rose 1.5 percent to an all-time high of 51,582 across all campuses. UT is preparing the next generation through the combined force of education, research, and outreach.

The University Treasurer is an officer elected by the Board of Trustees and reports to the Senior Vice President & Chief Financial Officer and will provide the dynamic leadership required to support the UT system mission and to further the implementation of the strategic goals. The Treasurer is responsible for all accounting, cash management, financial reporting, endowment investment reporting, financial audits and compliance, and other treasury functions. The Treasurer is also responsible for procurement services and risk management and is a member of the President’s financial leadership team. They also serve as the Treasurer for the University’s Research Foundation, which is a separate legal entity.

The Treasurer champions a culture of equity and belonging by providing leadership in an environment that actively promotes inclusion, diversity and engagement (IDE.) The successful candidate is also expected to contribute to the systemwide mission and fully embrace the systemwide Be One UT values.

The Treasurer will maintain processes and systems to determine daily cash position, forecast sources and uses of cash, manage debt obligations and lender relationships, manage fraud prevention functions, and ensure treasury activities are in compliance with University and State of Tennessee policies, develop and implement accounting guidelines, governance policies and internal controls. The Treasurer will assist in formulating investment policies including the establishment of risk parameters. Additionally, the Treasurer will serve on a five-person executive committee leading the University’s new cloud-based Enterprise Resource (ERP) system. Other responsibilities include:

  • Ensures internal financial controls are in place that maintain financial compliance regarding both budget and regulatory oversight
  • Ensures that sufficient funds are available to meet ongoing operational and capital investment requirements
  • Develops strategic plans for new functionality needed for continuous improvement of university financial operations
  • Arranges for indebtedness for the university, working with the state of Tennessee, bond counsel, bond underwriters and rating agencies
  • Monitors and controls cash flow
  • Oversees local, state, and federal government required reporting and tax filings
  • Collaborates and advises the Tennessee Office of the Comptroller on financial and related audit matters
  • Oversees receipt, disbursement, banking, protection and custody of funds, securities, and financial instruments
  • Advises management on investments and loans
  • Issues all financial reports that satisfy the institution’s fiduciary responsibility including the Annual Financial Report and presents it to the Board of Trustees
  • Maintains a positive working relationship with the Tennessee Comptroller of the Treasury and all financial institutions
  • Assists the President and SVP&CFO with state executive and legislative budget and finance hearing in association with the Assistant Vice President for Budget and Planning
  • Oversee the University’s procurement and accounts payable operations and establishing the most efficient procure-to-pay procedures
  • Oversee, in coordination with the State of Tennessee, the University’s risk management function and ensure that adequate insurance policies exist to mitigate risks
  • Oversee the Controller’s Office including the preparation of annual financial statements, equipment inventories, grant accounting and bank reconciliations and support campuses’ accreditation financial reporting.
Candidate Profile

The University of Tennessee is seeking candidates who possess a strong record of professional experience that demonstrates progressive responsibilities and significant senior-level management experience in a complex, distributed finance environment.

Candidates must be proven leaders demonstrating a minimum of 10 years of finance experience with at least 5 years in a significant leadership/management role. Progressive work history will ideally include a combination of skills and experiences that demonstrate a full understanding of complex higher education operations and organizations.

The ideal candidate will have demonstrated knowledge of accounting and reporting issues, capital markets – both on the debt and equity sides, familiarity with internal revenue code, understanding of generally accepted accounting principles and personnel management.

The following experiences and qualities are preferred:

  • Experience in a multi-campus university or system
  • Strong interpersonal and communication skills and the ability to work effectively with a wide range of constituencies in a diverse community
  • Knowledge and understanding of the mission, goals, organization, and operational/financial infrastructure of a public university
  • Highly developed and comprehensive financial/investment management skills gained in a large, multifaceted public institution
  • Strategic planning skills
  • Ability to develop, plan, and implement short- and long-range goals
  • Knowledge of investment strategies and techniques
  • Ability to review and assess the operational and financial viability of new and existing contractual arrangements and proposals
  • Ability to foster a cooperative work environment
  • Strong human resources development and management skills
  • Knowledge and understanding of institutional policies and procedures and the regulatory environment within which they operate
  • Knowledge of assets and funds management principles, methods, and techniques
  • Strong analytical, critical thinking, and decision-making skills
  • Comprehensive knowledge and understanding of Federal and State financial laws, regulations, and operating guidelines as they pertain to public institutions of higher education
  • Organizational planning, structuring, and staffing skills
  • Ability to function with a high degree of autonomy, creativity, and innovation, and to manage multiple tasks in a complex organization
  • Strong understanding of Governmental Accounting Standards
  • A bachelor’s degree in business, accounting, finance, or a related field is required. An active Certified Public Accountant (CPA) license and an MBA is strongly preferred.
About the Knoxville Community

Nestled in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains along the Tennessee River, Knoxville is a thriving southern city known for its great outdoors, diverse music scene, and wide variety of eateries. It is nationally known for its Urban Wilderness, located less than three miles from downtown, with more than 50 miles of natural trails. A vibrant downtown, located less than a mile from the heart of the UT campus, offers live entertainment, unique shopping and outstanding local dining and brews.

With a population at nearly 185,000, it is both the oldest and the third-largest city in the state of Tennessee; only Memphis and Nashville are larger., Knoxville is a one-hour drive from Great Smoky Mountains National Park, the U.S. National Park Service’s most-visited site. Knoxville also is within a day’s drive or less to many major metropolitan areas, including Atlanta, Chicago, Washington, D.C., and the Atlantic coast. UT’s Neyland Stadium is one of the country’s largest sports venues.

Knoxville #8 in “America’s Favorite Places” by Travel & Leisure, #2 in “Most Affordable Cities” by Forbes, #5 for “Best Cities for Small Business” by CNN Money, and a Top 10 “Destination on the Rise” by Trip Advisor.


Koya Partners, the executive search firm that specializes in mission-driven search, has been exclusively retained for this engagement. Tom Phillips and Charlotte Harris are leading this search. To make recommendations or to express your interest in this role please visit this link. All nominations, inquiries, and discussions will be considered strictly confidential.

Compensation for this position will be competitive with comparable positions at peer institutions. The University offers a comprehensive benefits package that includes excellent healthcare and tuition benefits for employees and their families, generous retirement benefits, a wide variety of professional development opportunities, supportive work and family benefits and much more. Additionally, Tennessee residents do not pay a state income tax. For more information on the University of Tennessee’s benefits, we invite you to visit


The University of Tennessee is an EEO/AA/Title VI/Title IX/Section 504/ADA/ADEA institution in the provision of its education and employment programs and services. All qualified applicants will receive equal consideration for employment without regard to race, color, national origin, religion, sex, pregnancy, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, physical or mental disability, or covered veteran status.

About Koya Partners

Koya Partners, a part of Diversified Search Group, is a leading executive search and strategic advising firm dedicated to connecting exceptionally talented people with mission-driven clients. Our founding philosophy—The Right Person in the Right Place Can Change the World—guides our work as we partner with nonprofits & NGOs, institutions of higher education, responsible businesses, and social enterprises in local communities and around the world.

For more information about Koya Partners, visit