The Northern Marianas College will eliminate and dissolve its dean of administration position to quickly address one of the major concerns of the accreditation commission-the need to install a chief financial administrative officer.
In a statement Friday, the college disclosed that the current dean of administration, Dave Attao, wants to transfer to his old position as soon as a chief financial and administrative officer is hired to avoid any duplication of responsibilities and to focus on other critical areas of the college.
NMC president Sharon Y. Hart, Ph.D, eliminated the CFAO position and the dean of administration post in January 2012. She then appointed Attao to the post. His job includes overseeing various offices at the college including the finance office, the budget office, auxiliary services such as the NMC Bookstore, the information technology office, the procurement and property management office, and the facilities and maintenance office.
A month later, the Board of Regents ordered the reinstatement of the CFAO position, citing its critical role in meeting accreditation requirements. Since then, the post has been vacant.
In a recent commission letter that indicated its decision to place NMC under show-cause status, the CFAO position was identified among the concerns that the college needs to address by October this year.
Attao will be resuming his former duties at the Community Development Institute and he will also assume the leadership of the Apprenticeship Program as dean/director of CDI and Apprenticeship. In this capacity, he will keep his senior management position and report directly to the president.
“Whoever is selected as CFAO will have a great team to work with in all areas. I’d also like to stress that it was teamwork and the cooperative spirit to work together that were the keys to the college’s better financial positioning, clean audits, and improved internal controls,” said Attao.
NMC is also being required to fill other posts including the Information Technology director. “I'd like to recognize that teamwork and cooperation led to improved IT conditions since the accreditation visit, and that most of the issues have been resolved or are close to resolution, and whoever takes [the] position will also have a great team to work with. I’d like to add that our HR director/legal counsel and president have been working hard with me and our IT team to fill the remaining IT positions including the IT director,” said Attao.
According to Hart, Attao's leadership in the fiscal office of the college helped to stabilize many areas in the institution.
“We are grateful for David's selfless and admirable proposal to assume other important responsibilities at the college. His leadership, along with the dedication and hard work of his staff, has helped to stabilize many areas of the institution, strengthened internal financial controls, and earn the college clean audits,” said the president.