Karen Snorek has been named vice president for finance and administration at Bemidji State University and Northwest Technical College.
Snorek has more than two decades of higher education experience in Minnesota and has served as vice president of finance and operations at South Central College in Faribault, Minn., since 2006.
“Karen has excellent experience in the MnSCU system and we expect that she’ll hit the ground running when she joins us here in Bemidji,” said Dr. Richard Hanson, BSU/NTC president. ”This is a crucial position for both institutions, and she’s the right person for our team during an important time in our shared histories.”
At South Central College, Snorek provided strategic fiscal management to the college’s leadership, which included comprehensive university budgets. She also used the college’s Master Facilities Plan to guide capital bonding requests and was the college’s contact with local legislators and with lobbyists representing the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities. She also has managed significant remodeling projects and the construction of a satellite campus in Owatonna, Minn.
In addition to her role as South Central College’s chief financial officer, Snorek led the college’s business office, food service and facilities office and oversaw two campus bookstores.
She also has extensive experience working with the MnSCU chancellor’s office as a member of the system’s Technical Advisory Team for its budget allocation formula, as a member of the system’s Budget Module Group and she also has served on capital bonding scoring teams.
Prior to joining the administration at South Central College, Snorek was vice president of finance and facilities at Riverland Community College in Austin, Minn., from 1996-2006, and was business manager at Minnesota Riverland Technical College from 1992-96. Before beginning her career in higher education administration, she spent eight years working in a variety of accounting positions at Owatonna Tool Company.
Snorek has been a member of the Affinity Plus Credit Union board since 2009, was the board’s vice chair from 2012-14 and is currently the board chair. She also served as a board member for the Affinity Plus Federal Credit Union Foundation in 2008.
She has been a member of the Rotary of Faribault since 2006 and was a member of the Rotary of Owatonna Early Edition from 2003-06. She has a bachelor’s degree in business from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire.
“I am so excited about coming to Bemidji and bringing the skills and knowledge I have learned throughout my nearly 23 years in MnSCU to both Bemidji State and Northwest Technical College,” she said. “I want to help both of these institutions grow into President Hanson’s vision of what they can be.”
Snorek’s duties at BSU and NTC begin on July 6. She is succeeding Bill Maki, who in March was named president of the Northeast Higher Education District, a consortium of five MnSCU community colleges.
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Bemidji State University, located in northern Minnesota’s lake district, occupies a wooded campus along the shore of Lake Bemidji. Enrolling nearly 5,000 students, Bemidji State offers more than 50 undergraduate majors and nine graduate programs encompassing arts, sciences and select professional programs. BSU is a member of the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities system and has a faculty and staff of more than 550. University signature themes include environmental stewardship, civic engagement and global and multi-cultural understanding.