Dear Members of the TC Community,

Last week, in announcing that JoAnne Williams had decided to leave TC, I indicated that we would review the areas and functions within Finance and Administration in an effort to consider how these functions could be best configured to serve the College’s needs.

Today, I am happy to report not only that we have developed a plan that meets that objective, but also have found two superb members of our community who are ideally suited for putting our plan into action.

Beginning next week on September 1:

Lisa Seales (M.A., Social-Organizational Psychology), who has already implemented significant operational improvements in Human Resources while advancing the College’s mission, will become Vice President for Administration with responsibility for Human Resources and TC’s Information Technology office; and Hank Perkowski, our current AVP and Controller who has provided steady senior management of our financial, accounting, and treasury operations through good and challenging times, and who stepped up to serve ably as interim VPFA in 2018, will become Vice President for Finance and Operations with responsibility for Budget and Planning; the Controller’s Office; Campus Services; the Teachers College Press; and Public Safety.

Lisa’s promotion comes almost literally on the first anniversary of her appointment as Associate Vice President and Chief Human Resources Officer. Prior to coming to her alma mater, Lisa spent 18 years at Columbia University in Human Resources, rising steadily through the ranks from generalist and specialist positions to increasing levels of managerial and executive responsibility. As a senior member of the University’s Information Technology operation as Assistant Vice President for Talent Services, Lisa developed and oversaw the execution of plans for providing the entire 40,000-member CU community of faculty, students, and staff with superior IT services in support of organizational design, talent acquisition, employee engagement, and succession planning & development.

Since arriving at TC, Lisa has led improvements in HR’s performance across the entire operation, with a focus on recruitment, onboarding for new employees, the advancement of TC’s diversity, inclusion, and equity goals, and the delivery of critical resources, services, and support for our entire professional and union staff. She has overseen upgrades to: the HR website, creating much clearer pathways to critical information and resources; the Page Up platform, making it much easier for managers and employees to perform important tasks; and to HR options within the myTC portal, furnishing employees with the tools and resources needed to excel at their jobs. During these challenging past five-and-a-half months, Lisa has been at the forefront at making TC a safe, inclusive, and welcoming place for every employee to work – both virtually and in person. She will be an outstanding VP for Administration.

Hank Perkowski has been at TC since 2004, most recently as Associate Vice President and Controller, and has been responsible for managing the College’s cash and short-term investments, its financial reporting, risk management and internal audit functions, and many other areas that bear directly on the College’s financial health and overall performance. Among his many accomplishments, Hank re-engineered the College’s procurement and expense reimbursement processes, saving not only time for employees and vendors, but also paper for the environment. He was instrumental in improving our internal audit processes, in saving the College millions of dollars by refinancing outstanding capital projects debt, and guiding the College to a liability-driven investment strategy for its defined benefit pension plan. With his prior experience leading all of the divisions of VPFA through a year of transition, his proven expertise in finance, his long track record of success, and his well-earned reputation as a warm, approachable team player, Hank will excel in his new Vice President’s role.

I am delighted to promote two excellent members of our community. I look forward to having them join my leadership team, and accomplishing even greater things for our community. Please join me in congratulating both of them.

Tom Signature

Thomas Bailey
President, Teachers College