Chancellor Douglas A. Girod

Changes to our compliance and risk management functions

Thursday, October 14, 2021


We want to provide an update on our compliance and risk management functions that will help us identify and respond to risks that can affect our ability to achieve our university’s objectives.

As we know, operating a leading research university is an increasingly complex task, and we want to be poised to reduce surprises and financial losses while ensuring we comply with requirements of sponsors and regulatory bodies.

To that end, we will be changing several reporting structures to ensure KU is set up to mitigate risks and maximize our opportunities moving forward.

In order to elevate and integrate institutional compliance and risk management functions across the university, Chief Audit Executive John Curran will become KU’s first Chief Risk Officer and Vice Chancellor for Audit, Risk and Compliance, effective Nov. 1. In his new role, he will lead the university’s enterprise risk management program that will help inform decision-making as we navigate internal and external challenges.

The Chief Risk Officer position will report administratively to Chief Financial Officer Jeff DeWitt. The position will report operationally to the Executive Institutional Risk Committee of the University that includes Chancellor Girod, Provost Bichelmeyer, Executive Vice Chancellor Simari, and General Counsel Brian White. Committee structures will be established below the Executive Committee, and we will name key risk owners for all KU.

Units that will report to the new Office of Audit, Risk, and Compliance include Internal Audit, KU Medical Center Office of Compliance, the Office of Integrity and Compliance, Risk Management, and Global Operations and Security.

These changes are consistent with industry best practices in risk management and federal guidelines, and will help foster a culture of stewardship and accountability at KU.

Additionally, this realignment serves as an example of how our campuses can work together to achieve common goals in a more efficient and effective way. We will continue to seek out opportunities where it makes greater sense for us to function as one university — rather than as separate campuses. As these opportunities arise in the months ahead, we will continue to keep you informed.

As always, thank you for your continued time, effort, and service in support of the Jayhawk community.


Douglas A. Girod, Chancellor
Barbara A. Bichelmeyer, Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor for the Lawrence campus
Robert D. Simari, Executive Vice Chancellor for KU Medical Center
Jeff DeWitt, Chief Financial Officer and Executive Vice Chancellor for Finance

One of 34 U.S. public institutions in the prestigious Association of American Universities
44 nationally ranked graduate programs.
—U.S. News & World Report
Top 50 nationwide for size of library collection.
5th nationwide for service to veterans —"Best for Vets: Colleges," Military Times
Chancellor's Vision

The mission of the University of Kansas is to lift students and society by educating leaders, building healthy communities, and making discoveries that change the world.

We will do that by raising the expectations we have for ourselves, the aspirations we have for our state, and the hopes we have for our world.