Interim Vice President of Finance and Treasurer
As interim vice president of finance, Tom Richards primary responsibility for systemwide financial planning and administrative services, including the university’s budget and appropriations requests; management of its endowment, retirement trust funds and debt; as well as the university’s treasury, accounting and financial systems, procurement, risk management, and facilities planning and development functions. The vice president also serves as a key university spokesperson to internal and external constituencies on financial and business matters.
Prior to his appointment as interim vice president of finance in May 2013, Richards served as treasurer of the UM System following his January 2011 appointment by the board of curators. Richards continues to serve as treasurer of the UM System where he provides operating leadership and strategic direction for the university's cash management, debt and banking relationships across all four campuses and the health care system. In addition, he manages investment portfolios in excess of $5 billion, including the university’s retirement, endowment and general operating funds. Richards served as assistant controller for the UM System prior to his appointment as treasurer.
Richards received the 2013 Rising Star Award from the National Association of College and University Business Officers (NACUBO). The award is given to up-and-coming leaders in higher education in the areas of finance, administration, and business who are known for their innovative, meaningful contributions to the improvement of their profession and to the efficiency of their institution.
A veteran of more than 20 years of experience in the financial sector, Richards earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Michigan and is a certified public accountant. An active member of the community, he currently serves on the board finance committee of Columbia Public Schools and is a member of the Columbia Northwest Rotary as well as the treasurer of its community foundation.