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Announcing the Next VP of Administration & Finance

Dear members of the Emerson community,

I am pleased to announce that following an extensive national search, Paul Dworkis has been named the next Vice President of Administration and Finance. Paul will begin his work at Emerson on December 2, serving as the College’s chief financial officer and overseeing Finance, Financial Business Services, Facilities, Construction, Real Estate, and Human Resources.

Paul’s exceptional and diverse experience spans 35 years in higher education, finance, and publishing, including leadership in operations, technology, international business, facilities, and administrative and business services. Throughout his career, Paul’s work has focused on developing and implementing strategic priorities and objectives, as well as partnering with colleagues and other leaders to support and advance the institution. 

Paul joins Emerson from the University of Maryland (UMD), College Park, where he had served as the Associate Vice President for Finance and Chief Financial Officer since 2013. During his tenure, he co-founded and led the university’s Administrative Modernization Program, a highly-lauded effort designed to achieve operational excellence. He created efficiencies across UMD, which resulted in several strategic implementations and upgrades to the institution’s budget model.  Additionally, Paul served on the steering committee for the implementation of UMD’s cloud-based Enterprise Resource Planning platform, while leading the development and management of the project budget and funding strategy.

Prior to his role at the University of Maryland, Paul served as Associate Vice President for Finance and Administration at Columbia University, where he directed the finance, administrative, and human resource functions within the Student and Administrative Services division. At Columbia, Paul provided financial and administrative expertise to the division’s executive leadership, and collaborated with leadership from across the university.

Before working in higher education, Paul spent the earlier part of his career providing strategic, operational, and budgetary leadership within news and media organizations, holding several roles, including Chief Financial Officer and Senior Vice President for Newsweek. During his tenure at Newsweek, Paul oversaw a $40 million headquarters relocation project, which was completed on time and on budget.

Paul holds a BS in Business Management from Fairleigh Dickinson University and an MBA from Bernard M. Baruch College, City University of New York.

Paul and his wife, Debra, met as undergraduates at Fairleigh Dickinson. Debra, an urban planner, earned her master’s degree from New York University. They have two daughters: Leni, a George Washington University grad who lives in Washington, D.C., and Perri, a Riverview School alum who lives on Cape Cod. Paul is especially proud of having served for 15 years as a board member, and nine years as President of the Banyan School, a New Jersey-based school for children between the ages of 6 and 21 with learning disabilities.

My thanks go to Michael MacWade, MA ’86, Emerson College Trustee, Board Treasurer, and Chair of the Finance Committee, who chaired the search committee, and to its members:

Jeff Greenhawt, ’68, Emerson College Trustee, Board Chair
Eric Alexander, ’78, Emerson College Trustee
Leo Hindery, Jr., Emerson College Trustee
Doug Holloway, ’76, Emerson College Trustee
Ruthanne Madsen, Vice President, Enrollment Management
Michaele Whelan, Provost & Vice President, Academic Affairs

Philip Shapiro, Interim Vice President, Administration & Finance

Elizabeth Holland, Administrative Assistant, Government & Community Relations
Ian Mandt ‘19, Former Student Government Association Executive Treasurer
Tim Riley, Faculty Assembly Chair and Associate Professor of Journalism

I am grateful to Philip Shapiro for overseeing the Administration & Finance division during the interim period and search. I would also like to thank Robert Butler, AVP for Finance; Shari Stier, Senior AVP, Human Resources; Duncan Pollock, AVP of Facilities & Campus Service; and Loretta Bemis, AVP of Financial Business Services, for their sound and steady leadership of the division’s daily operations.  

Please join me in welcoming Paul to the Emerson community.

Lee Pelton

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