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06/11/91

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Massy to leave chief financancial officer post June 15

STANFORD - William F. Massy, Stanford's chief financial officer and its chief negotiator with the federal government on indirect cost recovery, has announced his resignation effective June 15.

After spending nearly 20 years in the university's central administration, Massy announced last November his intention to return full time to the faculty as soon as a replacement could be found. The appointment of a new chief financial officer is expected soon, according to President Donald Kennedy.

Massy is a professor of education and business administration, as well as director of the Stanford Institute for Higher Education Research, which was founded in 1988. The institute conducts research on higher education and is part of a six-university consortium that is studying finance, quality and performance in U.S. schools, colleges and universities for the U.S. Department of Education.

"I'm grateful to Bill Massy not only for his long service in several roles to Stanford but for extending his term as chief financial officer beyond the wish he expressed in November in order to help us through a particularly difficult time," Kennedy said.

"It is good to know that Bill's deep knowledge of higher education finance and policy will continue to be available to us and, through his role as director of the Stanford Institute for Higher Education Research, to the rest of the academic community as well."

Kennedy also emphasized the importance of the chief financial officer's role "in working with the president and provost to assure the board of trustees of the soundness of Stanford's financial and academic condition." He said he expects Massy's successor to be named "very shortly."

In a June 11 farewell letter to finance organization employees, Massy thanked them for their efforts during the past 12 months to cope with the public controversy over indirect cost rates and the intense activity related to indirect cost negotiations, audits and the development of proposals for changing Stanford's internal accounting system.

"You have carried heavy loads through long, frustrating and stressful hours, and you have endured great pain as the government and press questioned policies and practices that a short time ago were considered exemplary," Massy wrote.

Among these, he said, was the documentation of changes being made in indirect cost recovery practices in a response to changes in government regulation in the late 1970s.

"The Controller's Office insisted on disclosing its practices in detail and obtaining input on them from the DCAA [Defense Contract Audit Agency] and written concurrence from the Navy. The fact that these memoranda of understanding now are being challenged (in a highly charged political environment) should not obscure the fact that they were conceived as innovative and good- faith efforts to negotiate solutions to difficult problems -- solutions that would allow Stanford to collect its real costs and satisfy federal regulatory demands -- while trying to keep administrative costs incurred by both the government and the university in line with accounting benefits."

"Colleges and universities suddenly are being held to much stricter accountability standards, and it seems like many rules are being rewritten retroactively," he said..

Massy also noted other changes in university finance organizations during his tenure as chief financial officer and vice president of finance. Those included providing operational audits to improve academic department management, investment innovations to help boost the university's long-term financial returns, a housing co-investment program to help faculty buy campus housing, and training programs to improve service to the faculty and staff clients of finance organizations, which include the Treasurer's Office, the Office of Technology Licensing, Real Estate Programs, Internal Audit and the Controller's Office.

Massy became vice president for business and finance and chief financial officer in 1977 after spending six years as vice provost for research and one year as associate dean for research at the business school. When he became director of the new higher education institute in 1988, Massy relinquished many of his responsibilities for operations, maintenance and facilities to a new vice president for administration.

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