Jennifer Sobanet joined CU Denver on July 1, 2016. She is CU Denver’s Chief Financial Officer and Senior Vice Chancellor of Administration and Finance.
In this position, she led the development of the university’s new incentive-based budget model, which rewards financial growth and reallocation of resources to innovative financial strategies. Jennifer also established the Office of Strategic Impact to support operational and performance enhancements by growing leadership effectiveness, breaking down functional silos, aligning resources, encouraging learning, facilitating stakeholder engagement and developing a shared mindset for continuous improvement and innovation. Also under her leadership, a public-private partnership (P3) procurement process occurred to explore options for the the first-year student housing project, City Heights. Sobanet’s work has been instrumental to the creation of CU Denver’s Strategic Enrollment Management Plan, as well as the Auraria Campus Capital Renewal Project.
Prior to coming to CU Denver, Jennifer served as Acting Executive Director and COO of the Colorado Department of Higher Education. In this role, she led the State’s development of higher education academic, student and financial policy, bringing a focus on access, equity, and closing the equity gap. She also designed the State’s first performance-funding model for public institutions of higher education to help increase postsecondary completion and led the State’s higher education policy work on aligning workforce supply and demand and developing experiential learning opportunities for all students. She served as the Governor’s appointee to the Business Experiential Learning Commission.
Prior to joining the Department, she served as CFO and VP of Finance and Administration at Front Range Community College and held strategy, finance, and legislative positions at Colorado State University Global Campus and the Colorado Community College System. She also served as Economist and Budget Analyst in Governor Roy Romer’s Office of State Planning and Budgeting. Sobanet also brings valuable private-sector experience, as she spent nearly a decade in management consulting and corporate finance before focusing on public higher education.
Sobanet graduated summa cum laude from Marshall University with a bachelor’s degree in economics. She earned a master’s degree in international studies, with concentrations in Latin America and Spanish, from the University of Pennsylvania’s Lauder Institute and holds an MBA in international financial management from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. Ella habla español.
Outside of work, Sobanet is involved in the local community. She has served as treasurer and vice chair for Goodwill Industries of Denver Board of Directors and is a member of the Leadership Denver Class of 2014. She enjoys yoga, tries to get in a run each day, and loves spending time in the mountains hiking, snow shoeing, and cross country skiiing.