Message from Provost Vincent Price
& Executive Vice President Craig Carnaroli
Council of Deans, Senior Planning Group, Senior Roundtable
on the Retirement of Vice President Robin Beck
We are writing to share with you that Robin Beck, Vice President of Information Systems Computing (ISC), has informed us of her decision to retire from the University at the end of the calendar year.
Robin has enjoyed a long and distinguished career at Penn. Following her arrival at the University in 1989, her skill and talents were quickly recognized as she held several positions of increasing responsibility within ISC. After serving as Deputy Vice President, she was appointed Vice President for ISC in September 2001.
Robin also has devoted more than 40 years to the IT field and worked 23 years in higher education. Prior to joining Penn, Robin was responsible for business software development and implementation at General Electric and worked with a number of business units including aerospace and power systems.
As Vice President, Robin is responsible for identifying strategic direction for the core infrastructure and university-wide products and service used by faculty, students and staff. Robin has provided visionary leadership and championed emerging technologies including web self-service, the data warehouse, mobile applications, and current Cloud strategies.
Robin has contributed greatly to advancing the University's tripartite mission of teaching, research and service. She has been responsible for numerous major initiatives, which have had a far reaching and positive impact on members of the Penn community. Robin has contributed to improvement of student life through the development and implementation of the Penn Portal, Penn-in-Touch, and Advisor-in-Touch and has provided direction for the Next Generation Student Systems (NGSS) project. She worked closely with three Undergraduate Admissions Deans on the implementation of OASIS, the University's undergraduate admissions system.
Many of Robin's key accomplishments have directly supported Penn's strategic objectives. As the University became more research intensive, Robin has played a critical role in the advocacy for, and development of, core systems to support electronic research administration (Penn ERA) and compliance. These efforts have greatly enhanced our efforts to support faculty and their scholarship. Additionally, as the University planned to conduct the most comprehensive campaign in its history, Robin worked closely with Development and Alumni Relations in the implementation of ATLAS, which helps the University coordinate information on the stewardship of our philanthropic and alumni engagement efforts. Finally, as the University became more globally engaged, she led an important effort to implement the Global Activities Registry.
During her career at Penn, she has been instrumental in providing a wide array of web-based, self-service systems, EBusiness initiatives and innovations such as the Penn MarketPlace, U@Penn, and the financial management and reporting system (BEN) that have made the administrative work of the University more efficient and effective.
Robin has also been an effective advocate for developing a secure and robust IT infrastructure and the highest standards of network, application and service availability. Under her leadership, implementation of the data warehouse has greatly enhanced the ability of authorized users to access and analyze Penn's information assets. She oversaw the installation of wireless throughout the campus and has guided planning for eventual data center modernization and consolidation.
We have appreciated and benefited from Robin's collaborative management style. She is a strong advocate of Penn's shared computing model that leverages the University's IT resources and governs how services and support are supplied to the University community. She initiates and supports the numerous forums for IT professionals across the campus to assemble and share ideas and opportunities to create a strong, efficient IT environment at Penn. She has forged relationships across schools and centers, with academic and administrative leaders and within the Health System to further common IT vision, goals and actions.
Robin has been throughout a colleague of great integrity. We are grateful for her leadership of ISC in the creation of the ISC Mission Vision and Values, which provides a clear articulation of the goals and service expectations of ISC in addressing the IT needs of the Penn community. She leaves us with an outstanding management team in place to continue the fine work of ISC.
Robin's immediate plans following her retirement in December are to spend more time at home in Ardmore, PA and Spring Lake, NJ with her husband, William Beck, W'58. She will leave behind her many responsibilities and burdens as Vice President, but not her steadfast and vocal support of Penn basketball. You can expect to continue seeing Robin and Bill rooting for the Quakers at the Palestra.
A national search for Robin's successor will commence later this summer, which we will jointly lead.
Please join us in extending both congratulations and heartfelt thanks to Robin for her vision, leadership, and dedication in creating an IT environment that will continue to support Penn's important work well into the future.