PULLMAN, Wash.–Sallie Giffen, vice president for business affairs at Washington State University, has announced plans to retire to her home in Cape Cod in May.
Giffen, 57, who came to WSU in 1992, has worked in higher education for nearly 30 years, 25 as a vice president. She was vice president for administration and special assistant to the president at the University of Connecticut from 1987-92 and vice chancellor for administrative affairs at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, for 16 years. Earning a bachelor’s degree from the University of Alabama in 1962, she worked for the U.S. Office of Education as a budget and financial management analyst until 1968 and began her higher education career at Boston University. She earned a master’s degree in business administration from Loyola College, Baltimore, in 1975.
“It had always been my goal to retire at age 57 and pursue other interests, and I consider myself very fortunate to be able to realize it,” Giffen said.
“WSU and Pullman have been wonderful places to work and live. I will treasure the experience and particularly the professional and personal relationships I have enjoyed.
“I think we have been able to accomplish a great many things during the past five years, both on the campus and in developing a better campus and community environment,” she said. “The credit for achievements goes to an exceptional staff and my colleagues.”
President Samuel Smith said, “Sallie has served WSU ably as a dedicated professional. Using her skill and leadership, the university, indeed the entire WSU system, is better. The major list of accomplishments during her tenure is a testament to her success. I wish Sallie well in retirement and for the future.”
Giffen has presided over reorganization and streamlining much of the business affairs division that includes facilities management, public safety, environmental health and safety, financial services, cash management and accounting, housing and dining services, benefits and risk management, procurement and material resource services and internal auditing.
During her years as vice president more than $370 million in capital construction projects were completed or authorized, including major expansion of branch campus facilities.
Giffen said she is particularly proud of the progress made in establishing an effective and respected environmental health and safety program, implementation of the intergovernmental emergency communications system, streamlining processes and procedures, reducing bureaucracy and building a committed and united team dedicated to providing excellent service to the university.

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