VMFA Selects Andrew Harris as Its New Deputy Director for Finance and Chief Financial Officer

Harris Maintained Dual Careers in Higher Education Finance and in the Vermont Army National Guard

Richmond, Virginia — The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts (VMFA) announced today the appointment of Andrew Harris as the museum’s new Deputy Director for Finance and Chief Financial Officer. 

“Andrew is a considerably talented financial executive who is known for his integrity and good judgment,” said Alex Nyerges, VMFA’s Director and CEO. “The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts is undergoing tremendous growth and it will be greatly strengthened with Andrew as our CFO. We are fortunate to have him joining our leadership team.” 

Harris is a senior level financial and operational leader with 30 years of experience in the higher education, nonprofit and government sectors. His expertise includes finance, budgeting, treasury and cash operations; debt financing; research; strategic financial management; technology and administration. 

In his recent position as Vice President for Finance and Administration, Chief Financial Officer and Chief Administrative Officer at Roosevelt University, Harris was a strategic partner in the school’s Building a Stronger Roosevelt plan where he helped to strengthen the university’s financial position, upgrade the bond outlook from negative to stable and returned the university to profitability. He also engaged the university, located in Chicago, Illinois, in a debt restructuring plan to provide relief from debt service obligations, which reduced debt service costs by more than $20 million in the first five years. Roosevelt University ended Fiscal Year 2021 with a balanced budget and entered Fiscal Year 2022 with a balanced budget. Harris also helped grow the school’s endowment fund, which doubled in size to over $160 million during his tenure. 

Previously, Harris was Chief Financial Officer of the University of North Texas (UNT) and the UNT System. There, he implemented a variety of new systems and procedures to strengthen the university’s financial position, leading to two upgrades to the UNT System credit rating. In 2009, Harris was named as CFO of the Year for the public sector by the Dallas Business Journal. 

Harris’s past positions include Associate Vice President and University Budget Director at the University of Chicago in Illinois and Director at Boston University Medical Campus’ Office of Financial Planning and Budget in Massachusetts. 

For more than 27 years, Harris maintained impressive dual careers in higher education and simultaneous service in the Vermont Army National Guard. The Commonwealth of Virginia, of which VMFA is an agency, is committed to assisting transitioning military, National Guard and Reserve members and veterans to the civilian workforce. 

Harris commanded at all levels through brigade, which in recent years included Commander of the 86th Infantry Brigade Combat Team (Mountain) and Executive Officer of the 86th Infantry Brigade Combat Team. He received a battalion command assignment to a combat zone, a highly complex brigade conversion from armor to infantry, two deployments to Afghanistan, a successful company command lasting 41 months, two rotations to Macedonia as part of the State Partnership for Peace Program and a response to New York City in the aftermath of the attacks of September 11, 2001. 

As Chief of Staff from 2017 to 2018, he supported the operational needs of all subordinate Army National Guard units in Vermont including human resources, finance, training and development; information technology; compliance; risk management; strategy; logistics; supply; procurement; diversity; readiness and civil support. 

Harris retired from the Vermont Army National Guard in 2018, having achieved the rank of Colonel. His many decorations include the Bronze Star Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster, Combat Action Badge, Global War on Terror Campaign Medal, Afghanistan Campaign Medal, Armed Forces Reserve Medal with ‘M’ device, Meritorious Service Medal, Army Commendation Medal and Army Service Ribbon. 

“With its upcoming expansion, this is an exciting time to join the staff at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts,” said Harris. “I look forward to my new role protecting the museum’s assets and its future through the prudent stewardship of VMFA’s and the Foundation’s finances.” 

The position of Deputy Director for Finance and Chief Financial Officer at VMFA was vacant following the retirement of Hossein Sadid. For more information about the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, visit www.VMFA.museum. 

About the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts 

The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts in Richmond, Virginia, is one of the largest comprehensive art museums in the United States. VMFA, which opened in 1936, is a state agency and privately endowed educational institution. Its purpose is to collect, preserve, exhibit and interpret art, and to encourage the study of the arts. Through the Office of Statewide Partnerships program, the museum offers curated exhibitions, arts-related audiovisual programs, symposia, lectures, conferences and workshops by visual and performing artists. In addition to presenting a wide array of special exhibitions, the museum provides visitors with the opportunity to experience a global collection of art that spans more than 6,000 years. VMFA’s permanent holdings encompass nearly 50,000 artworks, including the largest public collection of Fabergé outside of Russia, the finest collection of Art Nouveau outside of Paris and one of the nation’s finest collections of American art. VMFA is also home to important collections of Chinese art, English silver and French Impressionist, Post-Impressionist, British sporting and modern and contemporary art, as well as renowned

South Asian, Himalayan and African art. In May 2010, VMFA opened its doors to the public after a transformative expansion, the largest in its history. 

The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts has begun its more than $190 million expansion and renovation project led by the international architecture firm SmithGroup. Tentatively scheduled for completion in 2027, the project consists of adding a new wing of nearly 170,000 square feet and renovating 45,000 square feet of existing spaces, while maintaining four acres of green space in the Sculpture Garden. Visitors will experience a seamless journey through the collections in the new wing, which will house contemporary art, African art, American art, a new suite of galleries for rotating special exhibitions and a special-events space. The expansion and renovation will enable the museum to display more art, welcome more visitors and provide more enjoyment. 

The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts is the only art museum in the United States open 365 days a year with free general admission. For additional information, telephone 804.340.1400 or visit www.VMFA.museum. 

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Media Contacts

Jan Hatchette | 804.204.2721 | jan.hatchette@VMFA.museum

Amy Peck | 804.773.1791 | amy.peck@VMFA.museum

Kyla Coleman | 804.204.2702 | kyla.coleman@vmfa.museum

200 N. Arthur Ashe Blvd., Richmond, VA 23220