Robert Lippert, who has served as Fresno Pacific University’s vice president for finance and business affairs for nearly 10 years, will retire next year.
His retirement comes as the university faces financial pressures and has conducted a series of layoffs of faculty and staff and restructuring of curriculum.
University spokesman Wayne Steffen did not respond to a query from GV Wire about whether Lippert’s departure was connected with the financial issues.
University President Dr. André Stephens thanked Lippert for his service and his “numerous contributions.”
“Robert has been instrumental in many successful endeavors and his expertise and passion for the FPU community and his servant spirit have been a gift to me and to the university,” Stephens said.
CFO Search Starts Soon
The search for a new chief financial officer will begin in the spring, Steffen said. Lippert’s retirement will be effective this summer.
Fresno Pacific’s financial troubles have resulted in part from declining enrollments. In November the university announced a restructuring as well as more faculty layoffs that will take effect by the end of the current school year. Sixteen programs, including chemistry, mathematics, philosophy, Spanish, and Biblical/theological studies, are being cut because of smaller enrollments.
At his second annual State of the University address later in November, Stephens acknowledged the pain that the cutbacks have caused but said they were necessary to keep the university from having to close its doors, as other institutions have done.
He told the university community that campus leaders are revising budgets and enrollment projections, and are focusing on finding new revenue sources, increasing retention and graduation rates, and renewing curriculum, all while maintaining Fresno Pacific’s Christian education orientation.