After nine years at UC Berkeley, Rosemarie Rae will be retiring from her roles as vice chancellor of finance and chief financial officer in June, noted an announcement from Chancellor Carol Christ.
Alongside her team, Rae has been responsible for overseeing financing, constructing the campus’s budget and working with different campus stakeholders and budgeting groups.
Additionally, Rae has overseen the University Partnership Program responsible for ensuring campus business affiliations are in alignment with university values and policies and she has established close working relationships with the ASUC and Graduate Assembly leadership.
“We’re conscious of everything the students do,” Rae said. “Students are the most important thing of everything that we do.”
Prior to her time on campus, Rae worked for the National Trust for Historic Preservation and Volunteers of America. She also owned her own company alongside other partners.
Owning a company where she was responsible for a team taught Rae about grit, care, determination and salesmanship, she noted.
“The thing that I will miss the most is my team,” Rae said. “They are the people I spend the most time with. The achievements they have accomplished have amazed me.”
Rae assumed the role of vice chancellor for finance when campus was dealing with a systemic budget deficit. Under Chancellor Christ’s leadership, Rae said she used “all the resources at hand” to help grow revenue streams, graduate programs and summer programs.
When the COVID-19 pandemic began, Rae noted, the loss in revenue and new expenditures was a financially difficult time. According to Rae, campus faced a $650 million deficit.
She noted that her colleagues across divisions absorbed budget cuts with “grace,” which helped bring campus back to a balanced budget.
Rae added that despite the challenges she faced during her time as vice chancellor of finance and chief finance officer, some of the greatest moments have been watching not only the accomplishments of not only her team, but the pride of graduating students and their families.
“I have so much admiration for the students,” Rae said. “Being able to celebrate in those moments has been the number one thing that I love.”
Rae initially announced her retirement before the COVID-19 pandemic began. However, when Christ asked her to stay on board until the pandemic ended, Rae obliged.
Now, three years later, Rae will begin her new role as executive vice president and chief operating officer at Loyola Marymount University, where she will get to be closer to her family.
“I’m going to always look back on my years at Berkeley as years of very deep impact and connection,” Rae said. “I’m always so proud to be part of the finest teams … I’m so incredibly grateful and fortunate to have had this experience.”