Barrie Wilkes, Central Michigan University's vice president of finance and administrative services, has announced his plans to retire next year.
Wilkes came to CMU as controller in 1992 after more than a decade at Michigan State University. He was appointed to the vice president position by former CMU President George E. Ross in October 2013.
CMU President Bob Davies said Wilkes has been a steady, even-keeled presence at the university for nearly 30 years.
"I have sincerely appreciated Barrie's insight, advice and support during my first year as president. He has provided exemplary leadership within the finance and administrative services division and has been a tremendous advocate for CMU," Davies said.
Wilkes played a key role in CMU's transition to using the SAP software system in the late 1990s. He was one of the first staff involved in creating the College of Medicine at CMU. Wilkes said assisting with the college's Liaison Committee on Medical Education accreditation was among his favorite achievements of his years at the university.
Wilkes was instrumental in working with ratings agencies and underwriters to secure financing for several major building projects, including the Biosciences Building; Education and Human Services Building; Graduate Housing Complex; and the Kulhavi, Kesseler, Campbell, Celani and Fabiano residence halls.
He also was an advocate for community relations, serving as the CMU representative with the Middle Michigan Development Corp., the Local Development Finance Authority and other organizations. He supported initiatives such as the installation of additional street lights between campus and downtown Mount Pleasant, improving safety for students and community members.
In addition to his role as vice president, Wilkes also has served as treasurer for Central Michigan University Research Corp. since 2007.
Davies said Wilkes' team kept the university's budget and finances healthy and strong, allowing the university to weather enrollment declines and other challenges.
Wilkes plans to retire June 30. Davies said the university will conduct a national search for Wilkes' successor and expects to form a search committee early next year.
"I wish Barrie and his wife, Sharon, all the best in their next chapter," Davies said.