Meet Bill Nunez, TCU’s new vice chancellor for finance & administration
Bill Nunez was named TCU’s vice chancellor for finance & administration in the fall, and after a few months on the job, he shares his thoughts on TCU, leadership and serving Horned Frogs.
What brought you to TCU?
I’d lived and worked in Nebraska for 18 years, but I’m a Texan by birth (Denton) and have family in the South, so I’ve always had a relationship with the area. My kids are grown, and it is just my wife and me now. When I was approached about the job, I recalled visiting the TCU campus a few years prior. I’ve spent my career in academics, and I felt like I’d never visited a place quite like it. I remember walking across campus and into the open stadium and thinking how impressive and beautiful everything was. It was also the people I met during the interview process. Everyone I met was very accomplished but also incredibly kind and gracious. I could see myself here at TCU working with them and for Chancellor Boschini.
The two universities I worked for previously are public ones, so another allure was the opportunity to work for a mid-sized, private institution. It seemed a chance to be more nimble, more creative and be able to provide impact a little more quickly.
What is your leadership philosophy?
I am all about finding ways to maximize our potential, empowering people and never claiming to know something I don’t. I believe in identifying great talent and giving them the ownership to do their jobs. I’m good at a lot of things, but many other people are experts in their areas. I will always look to maximize our collective talents and abilities for the benefit of TCU. Humility, honesty and accountability are all important to building a team. I am also highly mission focused and will always default to mission and strategy regarding decisions and resource allocations.
What do you like best about being at TCU?
The connection culture. We use that term a lot, but it is so evident. It is truly about student success and student experiences, and there is something at TCU that is just different. I see it from the students I have had the pleasure to meet to the Board of Trustees members and alumni who are eager to tell you they are a Horned Frog and find ways give back to the students to help enhance their experience. It also starts with the leadership of Chancellor Boschini who cares deeply about our students and inspires us all to do the same. I like that our division of Finance and Administration can and does provide the resources that support these efforts.
What are your goals in this position?
Our primary focus is supporting the university mission and strategic vision. We need to view our role as the support arm or scaffolding for what takes place here every day. From our accounting, budget, contracts, financial services, facilities, grounds, accounting and risk management teams to all other Finance and Administration areas, our job is to support our students, faculty and staff in the work that they do.
The university is currently on solid financial footing, but demands for resources are continually increasing, and costs across the board are rising substantially. A key ongoing goal is to enhance our long-term financial position and be fiscally purposeful and prudent in how we manage our limited resources but also ensure adequate funding for TCU’s strategic priorities. An immediate project is to ramp up specific workflow and service levels at TCU. Part of how we will do this is through a new initiative we titled “TCU AMP,” which many may have heard of. It is implementation of new enterprise tools that will create improved workflow, efficiency and cost reduction for the university. Changes always take some adjustment, but I believe this will help modernize our operation. Watch for more information soon coming to faculty and staff employees.
Finally, what is your favorite place on campus? And what is either your favorite event so far and/or event you are looking forward to experiencing at TCU?
Regarding places, I am still learning about the university and the many wonderful spaces available to our community. We have some spectacular academic, student support and athletic facilities on campus that have all been wonderful to see. It is difficult to pinpoint, but I recently attended an opening event at the Van Cliburn Concert Hall at TCU. It is a spectacular building and venue with extraordinary acoustics. It is an incredible asset to showcase the immense talent we have here at TCU, and it was amazing to experience it.
Regarding events, I am looking forward to participating in Frog Camp. I hear amazing stories about this TCU tradition and look forward to being a part of it. But so far, my favorite event was the Reconciliation Day events this past week as part of TCU’s Race & Reconciliation Initiative. To see an entire community come together to recognize, document and move forward from TCU's relationship with slavery, racism and the Confederacy was, and is, truly special. I am tremendously proud to be at a place where this work is respected, elevated and valued so openly. RRI and that annual event is a testament to that commitment.