Chief Financial Officer

Winston-Salem State University Foundation

Winston-Salem, NC | CLOSED SEARCH

The Opportunity: Winston-Salem State University Foundation

Winston-Salem State University (WSSU) Foundation seeks a passionate, dedicated, and motivated leader to serve as Chief Financial Officer. This position is a member of the Foundation’s senior leadership team and reports to the Foundation Executive Director.  

The WSSU Foundation CFO is responsible for the overall fiscal management of the WSSU Foundation, including guiding the finance team, external auditors, and investment portfolio advisers. This leader oversees scholarship and program disbursement, in addition to assisting with overall foundation staff leadership, policy development and board relationships, such as finance committee management and engagement.

The University| Winston-Salem State University

Winston-Salem State University was founded in 1892 as a co-educational public university. It is part of the University of North Carolina system and enrolls approximately 5000 students.  WSSU offers 39 baccalaureate degrees, 50 undergraduate minors, seven master’s degrees, two professional doctoral degrees and six post-baccalaureate certifications.

Since its founding, WSSU has grown from a one-room frame structure to more than 39 buildings located on a picturesque 117-acre campus overlooking the woodlands of Salem Lake in the heart of Winston-Salem. It is consistently ranked as one of the top HBCU’s nationwide and in North Carolina, and one of the top ten military-friendly schools.

The university is now number one in the UNC system for North Carolina job placement for graduates and number one in the UNC system for the average salary for Triad-area (Winston-Salem, Greensboro, High Point) graduates. It is home to an award-winning student activities center, top 25 Division II football, basketball, and baseball programs, and offers students 100-plus student organizations.

The Foundation| WSSU Foundation

The mission of the WSSU Foundation is to foster and promote the growth, progress, and general well-being of the university.

The WSSU Foundation is a separate, not-for-profit, IRS approved 501(c) (3) corporation chartered in 1970 to provide financially for the educational needs of WSSU that cannot be met through state aid or student tuition income. The two entities operate independently. Local community members, alumni, and university administrators make up the Foundation’s Board of Directors. The Board oversees how the Foundation raises money, invests donations, and distributes grants, of which WSSU is the sole beneficiary. The Board also advises and supports other activities of the Foundation designed to further the interests of WSSU.

The Foundation operates the Winston-Salem State University Housing Foundation, LLC, an entity that assists in campus development and revenue generation. The WSSU Housing Foundation, LLC exists exclusively for the benefit of WSSU to lease, operate, manage, and contract for the construction of student housing facilities. Since its formation in 2001, the foundation has supported projects that have added 1,100 beds to the campus.

The Location | Winston – Salem, NC

Winston-Salem’s history began in 1753, when the first Moravians in North Carolina settled on 100,000 acres known as the Wachovia Tract. Their vision of creating a self-sufficient community made it a haven for entrepreneurs. Twentieth-century businesses, such as R.J. Reynolds Tobacco and Hanes Co., also shaped Winston-Salem by bringing remarkable wealth to the city and endowing it with an impressive list of institutions and foundations.

Today, Winston-Salem is the fifth largest city in North Carolina and home to six colleges and universities, including Winston-Salem State University, UNC School of the Arts, Salem College, Wake Forest University, Forsyth Technical Community College, and Carolina University. The city is frequently ranked as one of the best places to live in the US and enjoys an excellent school system and low cost of living.  Visit for details.

The city continues to build a diverse business base, including leading in nanotechnology research, finance, and manufacturing—again reaffirming the city’s tradition of forging boldly ahead. With a strong and unwavering commitment to the arts, excellence in healthcare research and technology, and opportunities for specialized and advanced education, Winston-Salem truly is the City of Arts and Innovation.


The Position: Chief Financial Officer

The WSSU Foundation CFO leads and manages the business and financial affairs of the WSSU Foundation. The CFO applies a broad range of accounting, budgeting, and business practices to perform a range of financial and business-related duties associated with personnel, auditing, risk management, compliance, grants administration, and finance. This position is responsible for the daily operations and management of the business, financial, and compliance affairs of the WSSU Foundation. The CFO reports to the Executive Director of the WSSU Foundation and supervises and supports two team members – the Financial Accounting and Reporting Manager and the Financial Administrative Support Specialist.

The CFO develops and implements the Foundation’s budgetary objectives, providing timely reporting to the Executive Director and the Board of Directors by monitoring financial performance. The CFO has responsibility for the establishment of long- and short-term financial goals and objectives; the formulation of accounting programs and policies; and the overall direction of accounting staffing, training, and development.  The CFO provides leadership in the development of control guidelines and accounting programs in financial, program operation, systems, and other areas.

The CFO maintains data integrity of fund information and executes the annual calculation of spending policies for all endowed funds, using current knowledge of legal and regulatory issues affecting endowed assets. The CFO manages the financial reporting for the supporting organizations of the WSSU Foundation and supports process improvement and related projects as requested. The CFO exercises principal leadership in identifying and implementing sound internal controls and financial strategies; develops and presents financial results to the members of the Foundation Board and its committees; and provides consistent updates to the Executive Director and the Board while serving as the key liaison to internal and external partners.

The CFO evaluates compliance with applicable regulatory practices and procedures, generally accepted accounting principles and systems, rules, and regulations.

Candidate Requirements


  • CPA license preferred.
  • Master’s degree in Business, Finance, Accounting, or other related field considered, with appropriate level of experience


  • A minimum of seven years of progressively responsible financial and administrative experience in accounting in a complex organization is required.
  • In-depth knowledge of North Carolina accounting and budgeting rules, regulations, and practices.
  • UNC experience in finance, A/P, A/R, and procurement policies and procedures.
  • Demonstrated knowledge of methods for allocating resources and the attendant revenue enhancing models
  • Strong leadership skills and the ability to communicate effectively with various constituencies of the university.
  • Experience in managing finance (accounting, budgeting, risk management, control reporting) for a complex nonprofit with multiple funding sources including government (federal and state) contracts and affiliate structure with diverse program areas.

Skills and Qualities:

  • Innovative and resourceful
  • Collaborative
  • Lead by influence
  • Honest, direct communication
  • Expertise in current financial methodology and regulation
  • Knowledge of GASB accounting, including fund and grant accounting, compliance, and reporting
  • Ability and willingness to delegate effectively and hold direct reports accountable
  • Skilled decision maker, with transparency in decision making and management
  • Excellent oral, written and presentation skills

The CFO will exhibit emotional maturity, genuineness, common-sense, creativity, discretion, decisiveness, political savvy, and diplomacy.

WSSU Foundation has retained Capital Development Services (CapDev) to conduct a search for this position.  Candidates should include a cover letter and a resume.  All material will be kept confidential.  Additional inquiries may be directed to Claire Waiksnoris at

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