George Guthrie has been named controller and assistant vice chancellor in the Office for Business Affairs at UNC Pembroke.
Guthrie, who joined UNCP on November 20, will lead a staff of 23 and is responsible for internal and external financial reporting, accounts payable and receivable, capital project budgeting and accounting, fixed asset and grant accounting, payroll and supervision of the cashier’s office.
With a wide range of experience in both public and private sectors, Guthrie replaces Ila Killian, who was controller for 22 years. He reports to Neil Hawk, vice chancellor for Business Affairs.
“After a fast and furious search for a new controller and assistant vice chancellor for Business Affairs, I think we found a person that will serve the department, division, and University well,” Hawk said. “George is very personable, has good accounting/business experiences, and is eager to do a great job.
“I don’t necessarily think it will be business as usual, but I do believe that the controller functions will be carried out in a professional manner,” he added. “I have asked George to strive to improve efficiencies and to be an effective leader in carrying out his duties and responsibilities. I look forward to developing a strong working relationship with George and am confident that he will be very successful in his new role.”
Guthrie said his first visit to UNCP was a pleasant surprise, and he found the surroundings familiar.
“I was amazed at how pretty the campus is,” he said. “I am from a rural North Carolina community and I went to a small college, so I like this environment. The folks I’ve met are really good people.”
He talked about the challenges of his new job.
“The challenge for me is keeping the bar high,” Guthrie said. “Ila Killian’s record was remarkable. The institutional memory that retired with her is irreplaceable.
“The staff here is impressive with considerable knowledge at each position,” he said. “They are very customer service oriented, which makes or breaks an organization, especially one that works with students.
“Down the road, I hope to offer some added value to the enterprise,” he added.
Most recently, Guthrie served as dean of administrative services for Martin Community College in Williamston, N.C. Before that, he was assistant director of business and finance for the Frank Porter Graham Child Development Center at UNC-Chapel Hill, where he directed grant and contract accounting and human resource functions for the university’s second largest department.
Guthrie worked 17 years at Nortel Networks at Research Triangle Park, N.C., where he rose to the position of senior manager for technical support and was responsible for global technical support in North America, Europe, the Middle East and China.
A Beaufort, N.C., native, Guthrie earned a Bachelor of Science degree from Campbell University and a Master of Business Administration degree from the Fuqua School of Business at Duke University.
He is on the board of directors of three UNC groups: Center Administrators Support, Research Administrator Support and University Manager Association. He is also on the Duke Fuqua Review Board for the School of Business’ Academic Games.