Daniel to oversee Financial StrategyBy Steve Koppes
Economist and financial strategist, analyst and consultant Kermit Daniel began his duties as the University’s first Vice President for Financial Strategy and Budget on Monday, Sept. 15.
Daniel’s major responsibilities include overseeing the development of integrated, strategic financial planning and building financial analytic capacity for the University. In this role, he will work closely with the University’s officers and deans, and with the financial planning committee of the Board of Trustees.
One of Daniel’s priorities will be to develop a long-term financial plan that addresses ambitious programmatic and capital goals while protecting the University’s assets.
“Kermit Daniel combines significant strategic financial leadership experience with excellent academic credentials,” said President Zimmer. “His data-driven, analytic style of problem-solving will prove valuable in helping the University make critical decisions in the face of numerous demands for its resources.”
Daniel moves to Chicago from Katzenbach Partners, where he became a principal in 2002. At Katzenbach Partners, a New York-based management consulting firm, he worked with clients in a range of industries, helping them drive and manage change.
“This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity,” Daniel said. “The University of Chicago is one of the country’s greatest cultural assets. For me to have an opportunity to help support the University is a tremendous honor.”
Daniel brings to the University a perspective forged as a recipient of a Ph.D. in economics at Chicago, as an assistant professor at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and as a consultant to many successful business organizations.
“I can really appreciate just how rare and how valuable the University’s culture is,” Daniel said. “It’s very unusual to find so many people in an organization so deeply committed to the same goals and sharing the same set of basic values. It’s very inspiring.”
One of Daniel’s key projects at Katzenbach Partners involved working with a prominent children’s hospital to help design and understand the financial and operational implications of opening a large new satellite hospital.
Previously he had served as a case team leader with the Monitor Group in New York City. His work at Monitor included managing a joint U.S. and Japanese team for a $2 billion manufacturing company that created and evaluated options for entering the Asian market.
As a member of the Wharton School faculty, he published original economic research in leading academic journals, including The American Economic Review, Journal of Econometrics, The Journal of Legal Studies, The Journal of Human Resources, The German Economic Review and Public Choice.
Daniel earned two degrees in economics, a bachelor’s (with honors) from the University of Kansas in 1982, and a Ph.D. from Chicago in 1993. The chair of Daniel’s doctoral dissertation committee was 1992 Nobel laureate Gary Becker, University Professor in Economics, Sociology and the Graduate School of Business.