Michael Andrechak

Emory's story, by the numbers

Interested in the broad strokes, Michael Andrechak likes to understand how organizations work. As Emory's first Chief University Budget Officer (CUBO), he is putting that curiosity into action to understand how Emory works and how to help the university succeed.

"To do this job, you have to like working with numbers," says Andrechak, who arrived at Emory in June, "but more than how all the funding and costs add up, I want to see how they fit together to understand the story they are telling."

Andrechak's charge is to ensure that Emory has the resources to advance academically -- that the funds are there to support its mission and that they reflect the university's priorities. To do so, he will partner closely with newly appointed CFO Carol Kissal as well as Emory's executive VPs, Health Sciences CFO Ronnie Jowers, the chief budget officers of units, the nine deans, faculty, and staff to create sound financial planning for Emory.

"I'm not in favor of top-down decisions," Andrechak says. "At a decentralized institution like Emory, you need to engage wide participation from the community to create a model that supports great research and instruction."

Prior to Emory, Andrechak served for 30 years at the University of Illinois, most recently as associate chancellor and vice provost of budgets and resource planning. As at Illinois, Andrechak brings to Emory a belief in transparent communication, the importance of data to inform strategic decisions, and "an unflinching commitment to the academic success of the institution."

He also brings a devotion to higher education. "Early in my studies, I understood that universities not only have this capacity to transform individual lives," he says, "but also are critical to a society's ability to navigate the challenges of our modern world."