Stephen Sutton was officially named the associate vice chancellor for Residential and Student Service programs Tuesday, with his previous position as assistant vice chancellor removed as a cost-saving measure.
Sutton has been serving as the interim associate vice chancellor since May, after the departure of predecessor LeNorman Strong. After the retirements of Strong and another senior RSSP leader Bob Flaharty, the RSSP leadership team was restructured in summer 2015.
“I have been fortunate to work in higher education for just over 30 years,” Sutton said. “(I) am passionate about providing the conditions that offer the best student experience possible.”
During the reorganization, the duties of Flaharty’s leadership role and Sutton’s assistant position were redistributed to several other RSSP leaders, making the role of assistant vice chancellor unnecessary in light of current campus budget challenges.
Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs Harry Le Grande said the interim position was created to ensure that the transition of Sutton’s role to associate vice chancellor — as well as the new duties assumed by multiple RSSP leaders — went smoothly.
“After Strong left in May, the suitable replacement time was during the summer or in January,” Le Grande said. “The interim role lasts not more than a year, so the timing is right.”
In addition to the money saved by not replacing Sutton’s old assistant vice chancellor position, Le Grande said that avoiding the search process for the job will save the campus about $140,000.
As the assistant vice chancellor since 2013, Sutton oversaw numerous programs such as Residential Life, Cal Housing and custodial services.
“Sutton is student-centered and a champion for student housing,” Le Grande said. “He is trying to tackle (the) shortage of housing by working with real estate.”
Joining the UC Berkeley Student Affairs team in 1987 as a Residential Life coordinator, Sutton worked at several other universities before coming back to campus in 2009. Sutton served as the executive director for the Office of Student Development in RSSP until 2013, when he became assistant vice chancellor.
As the interim associate vice chancellor, Sutton oversaw the operations of the entire RSSP organization, including its strategies and budget.
“I am pleased with Sutton’s role as a campus partner,” Le Grande said. “There is no need for an outside recruitment search when I already have a person effectively fulfilling the duties.”
Residential Life-related responsibilities previously managed by Sutton will be redistributed between Residential Education director Kawanna Leggett and Residential Programs director Glenn DeGuzman.
In addition, Flaharty’s old responsibilities will be taken over by Facilities and Housing Services director Heidi Scribner, who will now oversee Cal Housing, which matches students with housing assignments, custodial operations and conference services — the team responsible for summer residential hall placements.
RSSP chief of staff Mary-Ann Spencer Cogan is now charged with assisting Cal 1 Card issues, Sutton said, while Cal Dining executive director Shawn LaPean will hold additional duties.
“All of these leaders have been serving in these roles since last year and have proven very skilled in their new responsibilities,” Sutton said.