University of Alaska President Jim Johnsen has appointed longtime human resources professional and UA alumna Keli Hite McGee as chief human resources officer for the University of Alaska statewide system. She is currently serving as the CEO of Alaska Heart and Vascular Institute in Anchorage, and brings to the university more than 20 years of professional experience in human resources, consulting, executive coaching, training and communications.
McGee will start in the position June 12, replacing Interim Chief Human Resource Officer Ardith Lynch, who also serves as the university’s associate general counsel.
“The ongoing success of the University of Alaska depends on the talent and expertise of all our employees so I’m extremely pleased to welcome someone of Keli’s caliber to UA to head our human resources team. She will be a strong member of our leadership team and be taking the lead in the critical areas of employee relations, change management, and leadership training and development—issues our institution will be facing as we move into the challenging times ahead,” said Johnsen. “She will be a key player in our strategic short and longer term planning and we are fortunate to find this very qualified Alaskan—who incidentally holds two degrees from the University of Alaska.”
In her current position, McGee has been providing leadership and direction to more than 200 employees, restructuring the organization in all areas and building strong community relations. From 2000-2012, McGee was an executive coach for Hites Consulting Inc. where she managed strategic planning training and worked with individuals to achieve business growth. She has also held senior-level human resources positions at companies including Tanana Valley College, Fairbanks Daily News-Miner, UAF and Golden Valley Electric Association. McGee has a proven track record of building teams focused on attracting top talent, transforming organizations, leading human resources activity and creating an engaged workforce.
UA employs approximately 8,600 full- and part-time employees in locations across the state, with an estimated economic footprint of more than $1 billion. After federal and state government employment, UA is the single largest employer in Alaska.