Close this search box.

AVP for Finance and Corporate Controller Doncsecz to retire – Penn State News

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. —Joseph “Joe” Doncsecz, associate vice president for finance and corporate controller, announced that he will retire from Penn State on Dec. 31, 2022, through a phased retirement process after a 27-year career with the University.

Doncsecz assumed his responsibilities as associate vice president for finance and corporate controller on Sept. 1, 2011, after being promoted to corporate controller on April 1, 2007. Since 1994, Doncsecz has served in various roles for the University over the years providing financial expertise to the University’s 24 campuses and 19 academic colleges, including a yearlong interim role as AVP for finance for the College of Medicine from 2019-2020.

Serving in an executive management capacity and reporting to Sara Thorndike, senior vice president for Finance and Business/treasurer, Doncsecz is responsible for the oversight of internal controls and accounting operations for Penn State’s $7.3 billion in annual revenues and assets of $19.9 billion. In his work, Doncsecz has responsibility for the University’s accounting operations, financial reporting, payroll, oversight of cash and debt. Doncsecz also helps guide the strategic financial decisions of Penn State, fostering a culture of sound fiscal management.

In the Office of Finance and Business, Doncsecz works alongside University leadership to implement strategic and operational initiatives for the University and is a point of a contact for federal, state and independent auditors for research, compliance and financial audits. Doncsecz is tasked with ensuring the integration of long-term capital investment and debt issuance plans with available University resources.

“Joe has been a great asset to the University,” said Thorndike. “I am grateful to him for staying for the next year to help us through this transition. His many years of institutional knowledge and financial experience have been very valuable to Penn State and his dedication and long-standing tenure with the University are commendable. We wish him the very best in retirement.”

In his role as associate vice president, Doncsecz works closely with Penn State’s Board of Trustees ­– specifically its committees on Audit and Risk, and Finance, Business and Capital Planning. He coordinates with senior leaders across the University to implement strategic initiatives of the president, provost and senior vice presidents for Finance and Business, and Research. Doncsecz served as the executive co-lead for the recent enterprise system implementations of Work Lion, SIMBA and Penn State’s human capital management projects. He also led the joint University-Penn State Health efforts to implement separately obligated asset and credit structures.

Notably, Doncsecz engaged in the State Employees Retirement System (SERS) project in which Penn State funded a portion of the SERS unfunded plan liability and secured credits, resulting in $533 million in net savings over 30 years.

His responsibilities also include financial, accounting and treasury advisory interfaces with Penn State Health, the Penn State Research Foundation, and the Penn State Investment Council. Doncsecz also serves as assistant treasurer of the corporation for Penn State, Treasurer of the Pennsylvania College of Technology and in various other officer and authorized signatory roles for the University’s subsidiary corporations.

“I will greatly miss the positive energy and the overwhelming sense of camaraderie and community at Penn State,” said Doncsecz. “My favorite part of the University experience has been building a dynamic controller’s office leadership group and watching them grow and thrive both individually and as a team to move the University forward in the face of so many challenges. My hope for the future of Penn State is that our teams build on our world-class reputation as an institution that nurtures and enables future generations to attain their goals and dreams while changing the world for the better.”

Doncsecz previously served as assistant controller from 1998 to 2007. He was responsible for leading the University’s payroll, taxation, cost analysis, property inventory and research accounting service units. He also implemented policies to ensure appropriate external financial reporting, federal cost accounting and endowment accounting practices.

Doncsecz holds a bachelor of science degree in accounting from Penn State and an MBA with a dual emphasis in finance and marketing from the University of Pittsburgh. He is a certified public accountant in Pennsylvania and a member of both the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and the Pennsylvania Institute of Certified Public Accountants.

Prior to his career with the University, Doncsecz held accounting, auditing and tax positions in Washington, D.C., and in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, for Touche Ross and Co., PPG Industries and May Department Stores Co.