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Salim Alani to retire as executive director of internal audit

May 4, 2021

Since 2000, Alani grew Rochester’s audit function to more than 15 full-time auditors

headshot of Salim Alani

Salim Alani (University of Rochester photo / J. Adam Fenster)

Salim Alani, the University of Rochester’s executive director of internal audit for more than two decades, has announced his retirement, effective July 30, 2021. During his 21-year tenure, Salim has overseen the internal audit functions across the University and its healthcare affiliates. Alani has managed cross-functional teams to mitigate risks across the health care, higher education, and administrative units and promoted practices of working collaboratively on ensuring strong internal controls.

Alani has been instrumental in increasing the professionalism of the office growing the department from six staff to more than 15 full-time auditors, many with their certified internal auditor or other credentials. In addition to financial audits and internal control reviews, the Office of University Audit also performs risk assessments, and construction project and information technology audits.

“Salim has been instrumental in fostering a culture of trust that has prioritized the advisory capacity of the audit function while strengthening financial and operational controls,” says Holly Crawford, senior vice president for administration and finance and chief financial officer.

During the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, Alani spearheaded a rapid-risk assessment of operational needs and has also increased the use of data analytics.

Alani has served on the University Compliance Committees, the Data Governance Committee, the Privacy and Security Executive Committee, and the Data Security Task Force. He is one of the founding members of CLASP (Continuous Learning for Administrators of Sponsored Programs), a prerequisite for the onboarding of departmental administrators, enhancing research compliance across the institution.

Interim Executive Director Chris Butler

Chris Butler will become interim executive director of the Office of University Audit effective August 1 and will remain in the role while a nationwide search is being conducted. Butler has been with the Office of University Audit for the last 15 years and currently serves as the office’s senior audit manager.  He is a certified public accountant with experience that includes accounting and auditing, enterprise risk management, higher education and healthcare, and corporate SOX compliance.

“Chris has provided consistent and diligent oversight for many of the day-to-day operational aspects of the Office of University Audit, including the development and management of the internal audit work plan. Chris has also been a key part of the Enterprise Risk Management program which he will continue in his interim role.” Crawford says.

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Category: University News