UBC names new Vice President, Finance 17 Apr 2015

The University of British Columbia’s Board of Governors has approved the appointment of Andrew Simpson as the new vice president, finance. He will begin the role June 22.

Simpson has 25 years of experience as a senior executive leading the finance and operations portfolios at major post-secondary institutions in New Zealand and Canada. He joins UBC from Victoria University of Wellington where he has worked since 2009 as chief operating officer, implementing significant change in financial management practices and leading business planning for large-scale infrastructure projects, among other notable achievements.

“Andrew Simpson’s focused strategic experience and long history of success managing financial and operational decisions in the higher education sector is extremely rare,” said Arvind Gupta, president and vice-chancellor of the University of British Columbia. “His depth of knowledge and proven ability to innovate and stimulate growth will make him a strong member of our senior management team.”

At UBC, Simpson will oversee the areas of finance, treasury and risk management services across both UBC Vancouver and Okanagan campuses. The university has an operating budget of $2 billion, research income approaching $600 million, 161 spin-off companies and a $12.7 billion economic impact.

Simpson will also lead the university’s relationship with UBC Investment Management Trust, which manages UBC’s endowment, staff pension plan, working capital and other investment portfolios, and UBC Properties Trust, which acquires, develops and manages real estate assets for the benefit of the university.

“It is a great pleasure for me to return to Canada and play a role contributing to the growth and strength of UBC and its global reputation,” Simpson said. “I look forward to working with the entire UBC community to continue to build the institution and find new ways to support and enhance student learning and research productivity.”

Previous to his leadership position at Victoria University of Wellington, Simpson was vice-principal, operations and finance, at Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario, from 2003 to 2008. In this role, he led the largest capital development in the university’s history and an expansive portfolio of responsibilities, including the management of the university’s investment services and pension plan.

Prior to Queen’s, he was chief operating officer (1997-2003) at the University of Waikato, Hamilton, New Zealand; financial controller and director planning and information (1995-1997) at the Central Institute of Technology, Wellington, New Zealand; and financial accountant/financial analyst (1990-1995) at the University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand. Before his long career in post-secondary institutions, he worked for Ernst and Young from 1985 to 1990, including two years as an audit supervisor in Toronto.

Born in New Zealand, the 51-year-old Simpson holds dual citizenship with Canada. He is married and has two children. A chartered accountant, he graduated with a Bachelor of Commerce from the University of Otago, New Zealand, in 1986.

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