Steve Coan named as new vice president for finance at Ripon College

Following a national search, Ripon College has named Steve Coan as its next vice president for finance. Coan will join the College’s senior leadership team and be responsible for finances, business affairs, human resources and information technology.

Coan served as a senior officer of Sea Research Foundation for more than 20 years, including 16 as president and CEO. He is credited with restructuring the business model and bringing financial stability to the organization which specializes in ocean research, conservation and educational partnerships with colleges and universities. Coan is a strategic advisor to MResult, a global data and technology firm and a trustee of the Cal Ripken Sr. Foundation, and he serves on the New England Commission of Higher Education.

Earlier in his career, he was chief education officer of JASON Learning, a consortium of higher education, industry and government, providing innovative curriculum and distance learning experiences to middle and high school students throughout the United State with educational labs based at University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.

Coan received his bachelor’s degree in history and philosophy from Brandeis University where he later earned a master’s degree in management of human service and a Ph.D. in social policy from Brandeis’ Heller Graduate School for Social Policy and Management.

“After his already impressive and proven career as a strategic thinker in the not-for-profit sector, I’m enthusiastic for Steve to join our leadership team as well as the Ripon community,” said Victoria N. Folse, president of Ripon College.

Coan said he was impressed with the College’s mission and values and its strong focus on holistic student development and liberal arts. “Ripon is a highly respected liberal arts college,” he said. “It is well-known for being committed to excellence academically and for being an incredibly positive and supportive community. Ripon has a strong future, and I am happy to be coming here.”

Coan’s appointment as vice president for finance at Ripon is effective Oct. 2, 2023.

“I am confident Steve will have a significant and immediate impact on Ripon College as we continue to prioritize fiscal stewardship as a key pillar of our strategic planning process,” Folse said. “I’d like to thank the search committee and the many members of our campus community who met with finalists and aided in this decision.”

Coan will relocate to the region and said he has been impressed by the beauty and vibrancy of the Ripon area.

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