Two veterans to retire

Two of USF’s most senior administrators have decided to step down. Bert Hartley, vice president for Administrative Services – a position he has held for more than 30 years -and Rick Fender, associate vice president for Administrative Affairs have been key players in the branch of campus which oversees police planning, parking, university construction and purchasing.

Fender said Thursday he had been thinking about retiring for a long time, and with the current headlock placed on the university as a result of budget cuts, he thought it a good time for his departure, giving the university one less salary to pay.Hartley could not be reached for comment.

But with two of the highest-ranking officials set to depart USF May 1, to whom will the vast subdivisions of Administrative Services report?

Michael Reich, spokesman for the university, said it is too early to tell, but USF President Judy Genshaft has initiated preliminary discussions about streamlining the administration so when and if the university does decide to replace either or both positions it will be “spending money smarter.”

Reich said Genshaft is trying to make Administrative Services more efficient and has considered relieving it of some its responsibilities to achieve this. Reich said, for instance, payroll, which is overseen by Administrative Services, could be moved to Human Resources.

Another similar example he said concerns research. He said when handling research grants, the university’s research department handles everything except the money for the grant, which falls under Administrative Services. Moving the financial responsibilities to research would essentially put all its eggs in one basket, Reich said, and make the process more efficient.As for Fender’s idea that his retirement could help out the university, Reich said it would.

“It certainly opens opportunities for streamlining ways of doing things,” Reich said.

Fender started working at USF’s registrars office at 18. Soon after starting, he learned about a co-op program that allowed school employees to take classes. Five years later, in 1969, he earned a degree in management.

The Tampa Tribune reported Thursday that Hartley would act as a consultant to USF through October. Fender, though, has much different plans; they include a newly-purchased motor home, cross-country travel plans and a true outdoorsman’s dream.

“My goal is to fish in every state of the country,” Fender said.Genshaft said in an e-mail Wednesday that Hartley and Fender would be sorely missed.

“I would like to express my gratitude and heartfelt appreciation to Bert and Rick for their leadership and contributions during three decades of service to USF”

Contact Ryan Meehan at