Welcome to InFocus!

Brian Burnett, Vice President for Finance and CFO

Brian Burnett, Vice President for Finance and CFO

Reorganizing, Rewarding, and Moving Ahead in System Finance

As I noted in the last issue of InFocus, the only constant in life and work is change and there are a number of positive changes to report to our system, campuses, students, faculty, and staff we serve each day.


Effective April 1, I have made a change in the reporting structure in System Finance with respect to the office of Management Services. Previously, the Facilities Planning and Development function reported to the Assistant Vice President for Management Services. This group, led by Beth Asbury, which works with all of the campuses on capital planning, project execution, and reporting will now report directly to my position. I made this change due to the increasing work we are doing with respect to our $1.4 billion backlog of maintenance and repair projects across the System’s four campuses, an expected increase in construction activity, and increased scrutiny of space utilization. By having a seasoned staff like Beth reporting directly to the Vice President, I can get an enhanced understanding of our challenges and needs. Beth served as Interim Director of Facilities Planning and Development for one month before being appointed Director on April 1, 2014. She began her career with the University of Missouri in Facilities Planning & Development July 1993 and was promoted to University Engineer on June 1, 2002. Beth has been involved in many of the projects around each of your campuses and has a tremendous grasp of the opportunities and challenges faced by our campuses and the health system. I appreciate Beth’s willingness to report directly to me on a daily and weekly basis – I hope she does not find my questions or tasks too painful moving ahead.


When I arrived in August of last year, the Division of Management Services was led by an interim appointment awarded to Ed Knollmeyer. In the ensuing months, Ed has shown a tremendous grasp of not only Risk Management issues but has worked closely with other areas of the division as new employees arrived and demands for services continued, particularly in the area of real estate matters. Ed was more than up to the task of being the permanent choice for Assistant Vice President for Business Services and this promotion was recently announced. Ed has worked for the UM system since January 2007 and will do a great job in this role – please join me in congratulating Ed on his promotion.

Moving ahead

As some may know, the Board of Curators approved an initiative to move our current internal audit function to an “in-sourced” function after fifteen years of outsourcing with PwC. Our first task was to initiate a search for a Chief Audit Executive and that search has been ongoing for the last few months. At the end of the search, a decision was reached by the President, the chair of the Curator’s Audit committee, and me that our best solution for finding a qualified Chief Auditor was to look to a trusted professional who was already a member of the UM family. Ryan Rapp, UM Assistant Vice President and System Controller, was selected by the Board of Curators to serve as the Associate Vice President and Chief Audit Executive effective May 1. Ryan will be charged with building a team to take over the internal auditing and consulting functions from PwC on November 1, 2015. Ryan is an MU grad with five years of private accounting and auditing experience along with five years of system accounting experience.

We have some work ahead in filling Ryan’s position within the Controller’s office but I believe we have terrific “bench strength” within the Office of Finance to ensure a smooth transition.

I appreciate Ryan’s willingness to take on this exciting challenge – we will provide more details on this new division in future editions of InFocus. Please join me in congratulating Ryan on his new assignment.

Wrapping up…..

Thus, many changes continue to take shape as we work to build a “best-in-class” central finance function serving the campuses and health system with customer-friendly, effective, and efficient services. Thanks to everyone for all you do to support the mission of this great university system.

Office of the Controller

PeopleSoft Finance/Supply Chain Upgrade May 23-25, 2015

The PeopleSoft Finance/Supply Chain modules will be upgraded to version 9.2 over the Memorial Day weekend. The upgrade was commissioned to allow for continued support of the application suite and to support the strategic goals of the University of Missouri System. This is a life cycle management project that is necessary to extend support for […] Read more

New Features and Functionality Available in PeopleSoft 9.2

The PeopleSoft Finance/Supply Chain upgrade project included a review of current business practices that could be improved by using functionality available in the newer version. As a result of this review, several features will be implemented with the upgrade. • Electronic Workflow – For Accounts Payable, the ability to do an electronic workflow will eliminate […] Read more

Compliance Corner

Space Survey

It’s that time again… The Space Survey (Space Use Inventory) is currently underway. It involves many different individuals including your campus Department or College Space Inventory Users, Dean’s Office Administration, Sponsored Programs Office, Campus Facilities Space Planning and the Controller’s Office. The space survey is a vital part of the F&A Rate proposal process, which […] Read more

A-133 Audit Update

The FY2014 A-133 audit was completed on March 16, 2015. KPMG audited a total of six programs including Student Financial Aid and Research & Development which resulted in four audit findings (no material weaknesses) and an unqualified opinion. We would like to thank everyone involved for their hard work and patience throughout the audit. A […] Read more

Risk and Insurance Management

2015 Venue Coverage

University facilities are used frequently for individuals and outside organization’s events in addition to use for official University business activities. When third parties want to rent/use university owned space, for a wedding and reception, for instance, they follow the campus protocol for reserving space and must also provide proof of insurance for the event. This […] Read more

UM Budget and Planning

UM Budget and Planning Relocation

UM Budget and Planning is back in U Hall. The department completed their return move to U Hall (104 & 118) from Woodrail 3rd floor on Friday, February 13. You are invited to drop by and visit them in their new home. January 2015 Hyperion upgrade “Go Live” was a success. Budget users appreciate the […] Read more

UM System Supply Chain

University of Missouri Physical Inventory Verification

It is time to distribute the Inventory Asset Records to the campuses for validation. This year’s process has changed slightly. By the end of April, inventory lists will be sent to individuals that have been identified as the responsible person noted in the FIN Finance Structure database at either the College/School/Division or Department level, depending […] Read more

New System Surplus Properties Manager

Please welcome Carolyn (Howze) Calton as the new Manager for System Surplus Properties and Asset Management. This June, Carolyn will have been with the University for 20 years. During that time she has filled many positions within Supply Chain; including roles in Accounts Payable, General Stores, Procurement Operations and now Surplus. Surplus Properties and Asset […] Read more

Records Management

It’s All About “Records Management Compliance”

As a result of reaching out to upper management on the UMSL Campus this spring, our department was able to present two training sessions on the same day for a total attendance of 73 UM staff members. Chancellor Thomas George sent out appreciation comments to those involved in assisting Records Management in bringing this all […] Read more