Job Details

Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, Union Institute & University

Location:   Cincinnati, OH

Salary:   based on experience



  • Does academic excellence, social justice, and diversity ignite your passion?
  • Do you enjoy evaluating and implementing new business initiatives?   
  • Do you enjoy leading change?
  • Do you relish working with leaders in their fields who respect you as a leader in yours’?  



Founded in 1964 against the backdrop of the Civil Rights Movement, Union Institute & University (Union; was founded to engage, enlighten and empower highly motivated adults to realize their professional ambitions and pursue a lifetime marked by social responsibility, service and continuous learning.  A pioneer in adult learning, non-profit Union perfected concepts now common in higher education such as the hybrid blend of online and traditional classroom instruction, interdisciplinary study and student-centered education with socially relevant and applicable learning outcomes. 

Accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, Union offers bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degree on-line and from its Academic Centers and Branches in Cincinnati, California and Florida.  Union is especially renowned for its well-established programs in criminal justice, psychology, social work, and health care administration. In 2018, The Union Institute for Social Justice was formalized  It is Ohio’s only Hispanic-Serving Institution (HSI).



Reporting to the President as part of the senior leadership team, the CFO will lead a Controller and a team of 5 professionals responsible for all financial, accounting, risk management and facility affairs of Union. 

The CFO will be a hands-on, collaborative advisor to the President, Board of Trustees and her (his) peers and colleagues throughout the organization.  While this is a full-scope CFO responsibility, what especially distinguishes this opportunity is active participation in shaping strategy, building a robust and widely understood financial planning regimen, and hands-on involvement in evaluating and implementing new business initiatives consistent with Union’s mission.



  • Plan and execute financial strategy
  • Provide advice and guidance to the senior leadership team, the Board of Trustees and President on financial matters; propose action plans
  • Provide financial analysis and decision support and regarding new investments and business opportunities
  • Help senior leadership identify new funding opportunities; draft programmatic budgets and determine financial viability of prospective service delivery
  • Attend Board and Committee meetings; serve as staff lead on Audit and Finance committees
  • Ensure a sound internal control environment and maintain compliance with accrediting agencies, federal, state and local laws
  • Ensure accurate, timely and fully transparent financial reporting to all constituents
  • Monitor cash flow; oversee cash management activities, forecasts and banking relationships
  • Oversee purchasing activity, accounts payable and receivable, insurance, leases and property maintenance/safety    
  • Oversee compliance and quality service to students regarding their financial transactions with the university.



  • Bachelor’s degree in accounting or finance
  • MBA (or related graduate degree) or CPA strongly preferred
  • Ten years + progressive financial management experience, preferably in a higher education setting
  • Evidence of financial leadership and solid strategic acumen
  • Track record and evident passion for leading change and developing staff
  • Prior experience with government contracts/grants preferred



  • Connection with Union’s mission and embrace of its values
  • Entrepreneurial and open-minded; change is viewed as opportunity
  • Proactive initiator, but collaborative problem solver
  • Humility, humor and optimism
  • A natural teacher (of peers, staff) and excellent communicator
  • Ability to scale focus frequently between strategic and tactical issues
  • Intellectually curious



Satisfaction in being entrepreneurial and elevating a mission-driven organization dedicated to improving social equity by advancing the education and lives of working adults!



  • In addition to competitive compensation, a strong benefits package and unlimited PTO is offered.
  • Significant reduction in tuition for you, spouse and dependents.
  • Some relocation assistance will be available.


Michele Plessinger, Partner