Two top University of Alaska executives have tendered their resignations. The heads of Statewide finance and human resources have stepped down following meetings with UA’s new president. The resignations come even as the school faces big funding hurdles.
Monday University of Alaska President Jim Johnsen sent word to UA staff that he had accepted the resignations of Chief Finance Officer Ashok Roy and Chief Human Resources Officer Erik Seastedt. Johnsen says both men consulted with him before resigning. Johnsen took over as the school’s President in September. UA Spokeswoman Robbie Graham says shake-ups are not uncommon in organizations with a new boss.
“When a new leader comes in, or a new CEO, or a new president, it’s inevitable there’s going to be change. Change is normal, it’s part of the process.”
Johnsen takes up the reins at a time when the state is in deficit mode and the school has seen three years of budget cuts by lawmakers. He has vowed to run a more efficient operation, even as the Board of Regents agreed to a roughly 1 billion dollar operation budget. Robbie Graham denies the loss of the two top executives will hamper Johnsen’s ability to sell UA’s budget in Juneau.
“President Johnsen clearly understands the university’s needs, the budget considerations and all ideas for how to streamline these positions in both functional areas.”
Ashok Roy joined the University in 2012, while Seastedt started in 2013. Both positions are currently being staffed by deputy officers until the positions are filled permanently.