UND President Mark Kennedy has selected Jed M. Shivers to be the University’s next Vice President for Finance & Operations/Chief Operating Officer.
Shivers eventually will succeed Alice Brekke, who has been serving under a phased retirement plan since February 2017. Brekke has been a part of UND for nearly 40 years.
“I’m very excited to welcome Jed Shivers to the OneUND team,” Kennedy said. “Jed brings a wide range of skills to the position that will be highly beneficial to UND at this stage in our evolution as the premier flagship University in the Northern Plains and the region’s chief opportunity engine.
“I am confident he will make great contributions to the success of UND, and continue a legacy of excellence that’s been the norm under the guidance of Alice Brekke.”
Kennedy also thanked Dr. Josh Wynne, vice president of health affairs at UND and dean of the School of Medicine & Health Sciences, and the search committee that produced the highly qualified pool of candidates from which Shivers was chosen.
Shivers comes to UND from the Albert Einstein College of Medicine (Bronx, N.Y.), where he has served associate dean for finance and administration for the last 11 years. Prior to that he spent 24 years at medical schools in such places as the University of California San Francisco, Yale University, University of Miami and Stanford University.
Shivers says he hopes to get started in his new role at UND as early as May 15.
“It’s an honor to be asked to join the executive team of UND, which is the flagship University of North Dakota,” Shivers said. “I was extremely impressed with the comprehensive nature of my visit to UND, the solicitation of community perspectives of my candidacy, and the speed with which President Kennedy and the search committee made the decision.”
As vice president, Shivers will provide leadership for the University’s administrative, financial and operational divisions that include most areas of financial operations, public safety, facilities, affirmative action/equal opportunity employment, records management, and the Chester Fritz Auditorium.
Shivers says he looks forward to being part of a comprehensive university such as UND: teaching new generations of thinkers and professionals; developing new knowledge to benefit the world; and inspiring individuals to aspire, achieve and serve their community.
“Medical colleges do that, of course, but on a narrower plane,” Shivers said, alluding to his background at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine. “Comprehensive universities interact with a far broader range of people and institutions.”
Shivers said he was impressed with the professionalism and commitment of individuals he met in both the academic and administrative areas at UND.
“The passion and engagement of UND people shines out and speaks well of the institution,” he said.
Shivers also liked what he saw and heard about the University’s “clearly laid out” strategic plan.
“I got the sense of an institution and leadership that was willing to take on choices, which, at times, can be difficult to make,” Shivers said.
In his role as associate dean at Einstein College, Shivers is in charge of virtually all non-academic activities on the campus, including information technology, budget, accounting, office of sponsored projects, post-award grant accounting, student housing, security, food service, housekeeping, facility planning and construction, operations and maintenance, and environmental health and safety. He also oversees the management of the college’s core scientific services, which include high-performance computing, research computing, and the animal institute.
Einstein College is a research intensive medical school with an operating budget of about $400 million, including $210 million of extramural grants. In federal FY17, it received about $174 million in awards from the National Institutes of Health.
No culture shock
Shivers was born in Madison, Wis., where his father earned his Ph.D. at the University of Wisconsin. He grew up near the campus of the University of Connecticut, where his father was a faculty member from 1962-2005. His mother taught at the local University High School.
Shivers met his wife, Sandee, as she was completing her Ph.D. thesis at the Stanford University School of Education. Sandee retired a few year ago as CIO at New York Medical College after a career working in hospitals, medical schools and a stint in the corporate world with GE Card Services.
Jed and Sandee Shivers currently reside in a suburb just north of New York City. They have three grown sons, all of whom live on the West Coast.
Shivers said he’s not expecting much culture shock when he and Sandee eventually move from the Big Apple and settle in to Grand Forks.
“I grew up in a university town and my wife grew up in an LA suburb that’s home to Cal State University at Northridge, so I think we’ll be fine,” he said. “In the winter, when our colleagues head south to the Caribbean, we head to the Sierra Nevada Mountains, so we’ve never really been heat seekers.”
— David Dodds, UND Today