After 10 years as Western Washington University’s Vice President for Business and Financial Affairs, Rich Van Den Hul has announced his retirement effective summer 2021.
“Rich Van Den Hal has been an exceptional leader for Business and Financial Affairs and the University,” said President Randhawa. “His tenure has seen significant growth at Western, as well as two major economic downturns, the 2008-09 Great Recession and now the economic aftermath from a global health pandemic. Rich’s informed and calm approach has been critical in navigating Western through the highs and lows. Rich has also been an important partner with other vice presidents and Western Foundation leadership in making substantive progress on capital planning projects and several other initiatives. I am sorry to see Rich leave, and wish him all the best in retirement.”
Over the course of the coming year, Van Den Hul will continue to lead BFA and its major initiatives including oversight of construction of the new residence hall and interdisciplinary science building, promoting the operating and capital budget requests, and campus safety, including as manager of Western’s Incident Command Structure addressing the coronavirus pandemic.
Van Den Hul began his tenure with Western in 2010 after a successful career at the University of South Dakota, culminating with service as Vice President for Finance and Administration at USD. Under his leadership over the past decade, Business and Financial Affairs has helped Western weather significant budget challenges and reductions in state appropriations; improved customer service by bringing in new technology and reengineering business processes throughout the division; overseen construction and renovation of multiple campus buildings, including the Viking Union Multicultural Center, Carver Academic Facility, Miller Hall, and the Interdisciplinary Science Building and the new residence hall currently under construction; and helped break new ground with public-private partnerships that funded Western’s softball and multipurpose fields on South Campus.
“I am proud of the people who make up Business and Financial Affairs and our focus on serving Western,” said Van Den Hul. “Service is central to our divisional strategic plan and is core to our divisional values and what we do every day. It has been a privilege to be part of the BFA and Western Team, and I look forward to continuing to do all I can to advance the work and the mission of the division in the coming year.”
President Randhawa will appoint a search committee comprised of faculty, staff, and student representatives and initiate a national search for the position later this fall.