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A Message from Chancellor Tedd L. Mitchell, M.D.

Tedd L. Mitchell

Tedd L. Mitchell, M.D.

March 14, 2022

Dear TTU System Administration and University Leadership,

Last month, we shared Gary Barnes’ plans to retire, effective April 30, from his position as Vice Chancellor and Chief Financial Officer of the Texas Tech University System after a nearly 45-year career as a leader in higher education and finance.

Gary’s departure will leave large shoes to fill, and we are grateful for the leadership and expertise he has provided during his 5-year tenure at the TTU System.

The duties and responsibilities of the Vice Chancellor and CFO are multifaceted and have a far-reaching impact across the TTU System and our component universities. This is a critically important position that merits a collaborative, diligent search to find someone with the proven experience, leadership attributes and shared values to join our organization. To help in this search process and transition, I write to share that I have established a hiring review committee and am appointing an Interim Vice Chancellor and CFO.

Appointment of Interim Vice Chancellor & CFO

Penny Harkey, who many of you know and is currently the CFO and Executive Vice President for Finance and Operations at Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center, will serve as the TTU System’s Interim Vice Chancellor and CFO. She begins her interim duties on April 1, allowing for approximately one month of transition before Gary’s last day.

Penny brings 35 years of experience at TTUHSC, where she has served the university in various roles, including as an accountant and as assistant vice president for budget. I know she will do an outstanding job as the system’s Interim Vice Chancellor and CFO and am thankful for her service as we conduct a search for our next CFO. With Penny’s interim appointment, she will continue to maintain her current role at TTUHSC.

Search Process & Hiring Review Committee

The search process will be coordinated through my office by Dailey Fuller, chief of staff, and will be supported by a search consultant to help build a strong candidate pool for this important position. The hiring review committee will consist of the five component CFOs, Eric Bentley, vice chancellor and general counsel, and Martha Brown, vice chancellor for state relations. Their charge will be to review applications, screen initial applicants, and ultimately recommend top candidates for consideration. Top candidates will then have the opportunity to complete interviews and meetings with key constituency groups before I receive a recommendation and the next CFO is named.

Considering the breadth of this position, this engagement with these broader constituencies across the TTU System – including leadership at the TTU System Administration and within the CFO’s direct division, the Investment Resource Council, the Texas Tech Foundation Board, Inc., and the Board of Regents – is crucial to help determine the right person for the job.

As we undertake this process, I want to express my gratitude to the committee members for their efforts and again thank Gary for his commitment and dedication to serving the TTU System. In the coming weeks, the committee will meet to finalize plans and details to post the position description and begin recruiting candidates.

I look forward to sharing further updates and working together to find the best leader who will join us in our shared mission at the TTU System.

Warmest regards,

Tedd L. Mitchell, M.D.