Finance Director, BIRCH

Brown University

Job Description:

Brown University, in collaboration with Care New England and Lifespan, two local, academic health system affiliates, established the Brown Innovation and Research Collaborative for Health (BIRCH) in October 2022 through the execution of the Aligned Research Collaboration Agreement. BIRCH, is a Brown-based team of research professionals, services and support structures that will manage the collective portfolio of the Brown University Division of Biology and Medicine, Care New England, and Lifespan, representing over $200M in research (FY23). As a strategic priority of the University, establishing, operationalizing, and managing BIRCH is a high-visibility and extremely complex University-wide initiative.

Reporting directly to the Chief Administrative Officer, the Director will manage the workload of eight FTEs in the BIRCH Finance Office and will closely collaborate on the management of a dedicated post-award team, including an Assistant Director, in the Office of Sponsored Projects; the post-award team handles financial compliance and cash management for the BIRCH portfolio.  The Director is responsible for the financial management of BIRCH and overseeing and reporting on the impact to all three organizations, over time. Annually, the Director prepares the BIRCH operational budget, and periodically performs reconciliations and projections for the ongoing financial performance of BIRCH. The team of eight support department-based grants management teams with financial oversight reporting, and research compliance expertise.

Leveraging their skillset and expertise, the Director independently leads projects supporting cross-functional teams within BIRCH including the Animal Care Office, Research Infrastructure Office, Clinical Research Office, and the Office of Innovation and Support. The Director also partners with Finance leaders outside of BIRCH, (including the Controller’s Office, Treasury, the Office of Financial Strategy and Planning, BioMed Finance, BioMed Planning and Analytics, and the Workday Team), and hospital-based finance offices external to Brown. For any projects assigned, the Director works with the functional owner(s) to develop an agreed-upon scope of work, project plan, and timeline for deliverables.  The Director partners with project stakeholders on critical strategic / financial questions that require thoughtful problem-structuring and analytic capability, and developing an understanding of the operating challenges faced by departments, as well as preparing ad-hoc financial and accounting analysis as requested.  The expectation is that each project assigned is delivered in a timely manner and consistent with the prescribed scope.

The Director will work closely with the Chief Financial Officers and their leadership teams across all three organizations. The Director will also support the Chair of the BIRCH Finance Committee (currently the Brown CFO) supporting and implementing the Finance Committee BIRCH goals and strategic priorities. The Director works closely with internal and external finance leaders to establish priorities to advance BIRCH financial planning processes and the services provided to the research community, while ensuring the budget and supporting processes support the BIRCH missions and priorities.


Education and Experience

  • Bachelor’s degree required; Master’s degree in business or finance or a related field and/or other professional certifications in business preferred.
  • A minimum of 10 years of experience in research finance, budgeting and/or financial management, ideally in a university, academic medical center, or hospital environment. Alternatively, leadership experience within a highly matrixed, decentralized non-profit, corporate or government setting with a number of business lines within an externally regulated environment.
  • Supervisory experience strongly preferred.
  • Change management experience strongly preferred.

Job Competencies

  • Excellent communication and interpersonal skills.
  • Strong technical skills, including MS Office. Workday and Adaptive Insights experience preferred.
  • Possesses a willingness and ability to support a diverse and inclusive campus community

Education and criminal background check required.

Recruiting Start Date:

Job Posting Title:
Finance Director, BIRCH

BioMed Research Administration

Grade 13

Worker Type:

Worker Sub-Type:

Time Type:
Full time

Scheduled Weekly Hours:

Position Work Location:
Hybrid Eligible

Submission Guidelines:
Please note that in order to be considered an applicant for any staff position at Brown University you must submit an application form for each position for which you believe you are qualified. Applications are not kept on file for future positions. Please include a cover letter and resume with each position application.

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EEO Statement:
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As an EEO/AA employer, Brown University provides equal opportunity and prohibits discrimination, harassment and retaliation based upon a person’s race, color, religion, sex, age, national or ethnic origin, disability, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, or any other characteristic protected under applicable law, and caste, which is protected by our University policies.

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