Fitzsimons named vice chancellor for administrative affairs

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Date: Monday, July 9, 2007
Contact: Dr. Rose Y. Tseng, (808) 974-7444; Alyson Kakugawa -Leong, (808) 974-7642

For Immediate Release

University of Hawaii at Hilo Chancellor Dr. Rose Y. Tseng today announced the appointment of Dr. Debra L. Fitzsimons to the post of vice chancellor for administrative affairs, effective August 1, 2007.

Fitzsimons joins UH Hilo with more than 13 years of executive business experience, most recently from Southwestern Community College District in the San Diego, California area where she served as vice president of administrative affairs and chief business officer since 2005. As a key advisor to the college president, she was responsible for policy direction and leadership for all district fiscal business and administrative services. In addition to an $85 million operating budget, she oversaw $14 million in special revenue funds and $56 million in local bond funding earmarked for major college construction, building, repairs and renovation projects.

“Dr. Fitzsimons brings outstanding qualifications to this important position,” said Tseng. “Her extensive experience in fiscal and human resource matters will serve UH Hilo well during this critical period of growth and development.”

Fitzsimons earned a bachelor of arts in economics from the Pennsylvania State University in 1988. She received a master of science in administration in public administration specializing in policy analysis, planning, human resources, and education finance from Slippery Rock University of Pennsylvania in 1991. Fitzsimons added a doctorate in education administrative policy studies specializing in policy, planning and evaluation from the University of Pittsburgh in 1994. Topical areas of interest included educational finance, human resources, and governmental and public relations.

A dedicated lifelong learner, Fitzsimons is continuously training and updating her knowledge in the field of educational finance. She is currently working on additional financial course work and studying for certification as a Certified Public Accountant.

“I am looking forward to working at such a prestigious university as the University of Hawai`i at Hilo, with its traditions, diversity, and excellent programs,” Fitzsimons said. “What originally drew me to this position was the faculty, staff, and students. They showed an atmosphere of excitement and caring for students and learning that I have not witnessed anywhere else. To work in that environment will be exhilarating. I am also excited to live and be a part of such a vibrant, beautiful, and culturally rich community as that of Hilo.”


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