Racy’s Role Expands into New Office of Legal Affairs and Risk Management
Contact: Jeff Murphy
WARRENSBURG, MO (June 30, 2014) – Effective July 1, the University of Central Missouri will expand the role of Chief Strategy Officer Mike Racy, taking advantage of his professional background and experience to establish the Office of Legal Affairs and Risk Management.
The change in Racy’s administrative post to Vice President for Law, Policy, and Strategy comes with the retirement of Henry Setser, who joined the university more than five years ago as general counsel. Setser officially leaves his current full-time position June 30, but will continue to work on different university projects designated by UCM President Charles Ambrose.
Racy, who will report to both President Ambrose and to the UCM Board of Governors, will fulfill duties formerly handled by Setser, extending into the office a focus on risk management strategies. Racy said he looks forward to his expanded role in the general counsel’s office, working directly with staff members Jeffery Robinson, advancement/legal officer, who will serve as staff attorney, and Shelly Gonzalez, policy officer/paralegal, who becomes policy director
“Our goal is that, as an office, we can move the entire campus to be more proactive and strategic to help minimize risks to the campus community,” Racy said. He also noted his appreciation for the work of Setser, whose legal guidance has been instrumental in major initiatives such as the development of The Missouri Innovation Campus, development of The Crossing – South at Holden student residence and retail facility, and many other important projects and initiatives.
Racy said his future position will not affect work already being done in areas such Environmental Safety and Health, the Department of Public Safety, and in Student Experience and Engagement regarding risk management. He expects, however, the added focus on risk management in his new office will open new doors for his staff to engage with others on campus to help reduce campus risks.
Among his duties at UCM, Racy currently serves as lead facilitator for the Strategic Leadership Team, and helps to create, execute, communicate and assess strategic projects at multiple levels. He works with local, state and national legislators to strengthen and expand relationships that help further UCM’s mission and contribute to local and state economic development. He also represents the president on a number of forums, and provides project management for various levels of implementation of the strategic planning initiative, the strategic governance model, strategic positioning, and specifically, The Missouri Innovation Campus, and the Learning to a Greater Degree Contract for college completion initiative.
“We have an excellent opportunity at UCM to utilize all of Mike Racy’s strengths in his new position as Vice President for Law, Policy, and Strategy, but we’re also fortunate that Hank Setser, although retiring, will continue to assist the university as we move forward on some special projects,” said President Ambrose. “Hank has been a tremendous asset to UCM. We’re very grateful for his service, and the ability to continue to benefit from his knowledge and experience.”
A Kansas native, Racy was born in Lawrence and grew up in Abilene. He attended Washburn University in Topeka and worked for the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) after his graduation, then earned a law degree from the University of Missouri-Kansas City, in 1992. That was followed by his legal practice with Gage and Tucker (now Lathrop and Gage) law firm in Kansas City as a general litigation attorney.
Racy joined the NCAA staff in November 1993 as a legislative assistant, and was assigned by the NCAA Presidents Commission to assist with a special project to reorganize the governance structure for all three NCAA divisions and to rewrite the association’s constitution. He became the assistant chief of staff for NCAA Division II in 1996, and was named chief of staff in 1999 (retitled as vice president in 2003). He joined UCM in July 2013.
The parents of three boys, Cal, Zac, and Ty, who all live at home, Racy and his wife, Kathy, reside in Sedalia.