Sector:
Education
Function:
Finance / Accounting
Location:
CA - Greater Los Angeles Area
About the Organization

American Jewish University (AJU) is a thriving center of Jewish resources and talent built upon the mission of Jewish learning, culture, ethics, leadership and peoplehood. In 2007, the University of Judaism, as it was then known, merged with the Brandeis Bardin Institute, creating a landmark entity, and from then on was known as American Jewish University.

AJU is more than a university, and it serves a wide array of publics, from undergraduate, rabbinical, and graduate students to children aged six to 16 and adult learners. The University is comprised of an undergraduate program, as well as graduate programs in Not-for-Profit Management and Education, a large and respected continuing studies division, a day and overnight camp, and a rabbinical seminary. In addition to academic study, within this construct are multiple programs focusing on Jewish life and civilization, family life, and arts and culture. The AJU is not aligned with a specific Jewish denomination, with the exception of the Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies, which educates and ordains rabbis within the Conservative Movement.

This organization boasts two campuses and a shared future and recently appointed a new President, Dr. Jeffrey Herbst. To learn more about AJU, please visit www.aju.edu.

About the Position

As a key member of the Executive Team, the CFO will report directly to the President and play a critical role in the overall strategic management of the University. The CFO will set the financial strategy for AJU's entire operation, while also managing the design and delivery of effective systems and process improvements across the organization. In addition to managing the finance team, the CFO will oversee Human Resources, and facilities and auxiliary services. As AJU embarks upon a strategic plan to realize a compelling new vision for the institution's future, the CFO will serve as a true strategic partner to organizational leaders, providing strong and accurate financial guidance to guide decisions, as well as leading long-term financial forecasting, budgeting, and strategy-setting.

This is an ideal opportunity for a proven financial leader accustomed to managing a complex portfolio and leading change to apply their expertise towards AJU's mission of providing an education based on Jewish learning, culture, ethics, leadership and peoplehood.

Responsibilities include, but are not limited to:

Organizational Leadership

  • Serve as a thought partner and member of AJU's Executive Team, contributing to organizational vision and strategy, mentoring staff, and providing financial oversight
  • As a member of the organization's Executive Team, promote AJU's values and culture, and contribute to key organizational decisions
  • Effectively communicate and present critical financial matters and risks to the President; the Finance, Audit, Facilities and Risk Management Committees of the Board of Directors and the full Board; as well as to key external stakeholders (e.g., funders, lenders, partners)
  • Manage and develop a team of 6, including leads of accounting, finance, financial aid, HR, facilities and auxiliary services, ensuring each team is coached, developed, and positioned to achieve their goals

Financial Management and Oversight

  • Oversee all fiscal and fiduciary responsibilities for the University, in conjunction with the Board of Directors and the Finance, Audit, and Risk Management Committees of the Board
  • Manage teams responsible for all operational finance activities, including accounting, financial aid, forecasting, grants management, real estate management, securing, structuring and managing borrowing activities, lender relationships, and financial-related strategic planning work
  • Work with the investment committee and outside advisors to ensure the proper management of our investment portfolio
  • Oversee the annual audit process; liaise with external auditors and the Audit Committee of the Board of Directors
  • Manage the University's $100M+ investment portfolio, with an eye towards risk management and income maximization
  • Develop and oversee a reliable cash flow projection process and reporting mechanism, which includes minimum cash threshold to meet operating needs and to fund projects such as new system implementations or facilities projects

Strategic Planning and Problem Solving

  • Set financial strategy and lead long-term financial forecasting and budgeting for AJU's $28.7M operating budget
  • Assess and evaluate the organization's financial performance with regard to long-term budgetary planning and cost management in alignment with the strategic plan
  • Oversee and lead annual budgeting and planning process in conjunction with the President; review and administer all financial plans and budgets; monitor progress and changes and keep senior leadership team abreast of the organization's financial status
  • Recognize and anticipate opportunities and challenges as they relate to financial systems and operations; generate ideas, strategies, and solutions to drive impact

Systems and Process Design

  • Lead the design, revision and roll out of new systems, structures, and policies and manage communication and project plans to ensure thorough understanding and follow through
  • Identify opportunities, and lead the change management process, to establish the finance department as collaborative and customer-centric, supporting partnerships across the University and enhancing the skills of the existing team
  • Develop systems to guarantee accuracy and compliance of accounting and reporting, as well as leading the financial affairs of AJU in accordance with the Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP) and City, State and Federal government regulations
Candidate Requirements:

The ideal candidate will possess the following qualifications:

  • Bachelor's degree required; MBA and/or CPA preferred
  • Minimum of 15+ years of overall professional experience
  • Minimum of 5+ years of financial and operations management within a university, non-profit, or corporation
  • Demonstrated track record of leadership at a time of change, including cultural change
  • Track record of developing systems and processes to support sound financial planning, management, and decision-making
  • Track record of building and leading effective teams; evidence of building a customer-centric, data-driven team culture and coaching/developing others to maximize their potential
  • Excellent communication skills and ability to prioritize, negotiate, and work collaboratively across the several divisions within a university, non-profit, or corporation.
  • Collaborative approach to executive leadership, and the ability to work effectively with cross functional teams to meet goals and improve organizational performance
  • Strong analytical capabilities including financial planning, forecasting, modeling, and data analysis
  • A multi-tasker with the ability to wear many hats and a willingness to work alongside a team in a hard-working environment
  • Must be comfortable with and have an appreciation for Jewish culture
Compensation and benefits:

Salary and benefits will be competitive and commensurate with experience.

American Jewish University is an Equal Opportunity Employer with a strong commitment to diversity in the workplace, and welcomes candidates from diverse backgrounds.