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SUNY Potsdam Welcomes Brent Parker as New Vice President for Business Affairs

November 3, 2023
Brent Parker Joins SUNY Potsdam as Vice President for Business Affairs & Chief Financial Officer 

Brent Parker is the new vice president for business affairs and chief financial officer at SUNY Potsdam.

Following a national search, SUNY Potsdam has named Brent Parker as the institution’s new vice president for business affairs and chief financial officer. Since joining campus at the beginning of October, he has been hard at work supporting the College’s financial planning and operations. 

Parker brings over 20 years of experience in higher education to his leadership role at SUNY Potsdam, most recently having served as the associate vice president for finance and controller at Sarah Lawrence College in Bronxville, N.Y., where he had served since 2014. 

We are proud to welcome Brent Parker to the SUNY Potsdam family, and to our leadership team. His extensive experience in finance and higher education administration will be critical to our ongoing work to stabilize our finances and ensure a strong future,” said President Dr. Suzanne Smith. “Brent's dedication to excellence and proactive problem-solving will make him an invaluable addition to our leadership team. His skillset and experience will be critical to advancing our institution's financial stability and growth. 

At Sarah Lawrence, Parker demonstrated exceptional leadership by overseeing various financial functions, including financial reporting, operations, accounting, student accounts, insurance and treasury, with an annual budget of $90 million. His contributions extended to issuing audited financial statements, college debt issuances and refinancing, and the implementation of crucial technology solutions.  

Prior to his service there, Parker was the associate vice president for finance and administration at Montgomery County Community College in Blue Bell, Pa., from 2011 to 2014, and the director of fiscal operations for the University of Pennsylvania School of Dental Medicine, from 2004 to 2011. He earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees at Penn, and began his career in administration and finance there, working in various roles within business administration services and financial training. He completed additional post-baccalaureate coursework in accounting, computer engineering and education.  

The financial challenges that SUNY Potsdam faces are not unique or even uncommon in higher education. What is less common is the willingness and courage of College leadership to make difficult choices designed to strengthen the fiscal position of the College and create the ability to respond to new opportunities and challenges. In my short time here, I've seen that courage bolstered by strong support from alumni, the State University of New York and the Potsdam community. I am excited to be joining the community and look forward to contributing to the College's bright future,” Parker said. 

Prior to Parker’s appointment, David Davin, SUNY Potsdam’s vice president for advancement, oversaw the Division of Business Affairs during the transition period. The search was chaired by Melissa Proulx, the associate vice president for administration and human resources, who led a committee representing all areas of campus. 

About SUNY Potsdam:  

Founded in 1816, The State University of New York at Potsdam is one of America’s first 50 colleges—and the oldest institution within SUNY. Now in its third century, SUNY Potsdam is distinguished by a legacy of pioneering programs and educational excellence. The College currently enrolls approximately 2,500 undergraduate and graduate students. Home to the world-renowned Crane School of Music, SUNY Potsdam is known for its challenging liberal arts and sciences core, distinction in teacher training and culture of creativity. To learn more, visit 

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