The records of the Vice-President for Business and Finance incorporate the records of the predecessor office of Business Manager established in 1954. The bulk of the records represent the time period 1960 through 1983. The Business Manager and his successor, Vice-President of Business and Finance, were responsible for coordinating the administration of non-academic departments of the College, including all functions relating to accounting systems and buildings and grounds, residences and dining halls, and all purchases of goods and services.
The record group is organized into seven subgroups and reports on the respective areas of responsibility and administrative functions. The subgroups are: I. Administrative Records of the Vice-President for Business and Finance (Governance Files); II. Administrative Records of the Vice-President for Business and Finance (General Files); III. Personnel Files; IV. Academic Divisions, Departments, and Programs; V. Buildings and Grounds; VI. Committee Files; and VII. Organizations and Associations.
The first two subgroups document the Vice-President’s main areas of administration, namely, budgetary and investment responsibilities. The files of the various governing bodies of Oberlin College are hierarchically ordered. The records of the governing bodies (Board of Trustees, Executive Committee, Presidential Staff Meetings, Investment Committee) contain minutes, agenda, memoranda, and background materials relating to the operation and function of the Business Office and the College in general.
Subgroup II, consisting of records that document the daily administration of the Business and Finance Office, is organized into ten series. Extant is a fairly complete run of auditing reports, budgetary records, investment and endowment files, and general and subject files. Of particular importance are the records concerning College insurance and health plans. In addition, the Vice-President’s role as a member of the Allen Memorial Hospital Board is represented here. Of special importance is the history of the hospital, which these files contain.
The Vice-President’s responsibility for the non-faculty employee groups and staff of the College is documented in Subgroup III, Personnel Records. Correspondence regarding negotiations with OCOPE and OCEA, as well as salary classifications from A&PS, make up the first series. This important operations office frequently received copies of all college-wide transactions, including appointments. In series two, Staff Appointment Files, are filed faculty and staff members, along with information on tenure and reappointment for the period 1978-85. The third series, Topical Files, deals with a variety of issues including, benefits, payroll, pensions, leaves, retirement, etc.
The remaining four subgroups are organized on the basis of particular functions performed by the Vice-President’s Office. In subgroup IV, consisting of information copies that document various academic departments and programs, are located the files of both current and defunct divisions, departments, and programs. The power and influence of the Business and Finance Office was such that the Vice-President received copies of most memos that were sent out even though he had no academic duties. The files consist of requests for funding of special programs as well as additional funding for those already in existence from corresponding departments and are not particularly rich in research data. However, the records do document several programs that might otherwise have been forgotten if not for their detailing here.
Subgroup V, Buildings and Grounds, contains documentation regarding that department because the Superintendent of Buildings and Grounds reported to the Business Officer. The annual reports, which cover the period 1937-65, provide important detail on the activities of Buildings and Grounds, activity from before it came under the Vice-President’s control and after. General files deal with a variety of topics from building administration to maintenance. Lewis Tower, during the period 1953-71, played an important role in the development of the physical plant of the College. This is well documented in the third series, which contains material in regards to the planning, financing, and construction of the King Building (1961), Mudd Library (1974), and the Oberlin Inn (1955). The Oberlin Inn files are substantial and deal with all phases of Inn operation from 1954 through 1973. Documentation regarding an addition to the Inn (1970) is also well represented. The final series in this group originated from the Buildings and Grounds Offices. The bulk of the files covers a period predating the Vice-President’s control over the department. Records go back as far as 1923, but most of the information deals with the period 1938 through 1950.
Committee files further illuminate the amount of involvement the Vice-President had in the activities of the College. The committees on which he served are represented in this subgroup: Budget Advisory Committee, Budget and Finance Committee, Building and Grounds Committee, College Benefits Committee, College Investment Committee, Finance Committee, Skating Rink Committee, Student-Faculty Health Task Force Committee, and Tuition Remission Subcommittee.
The final subgroup reports on the relationship Oberlin College, and in particular the Business and Finance Office, had with a variety of local, state, regional, and national organizations and associations. Of particular interest are the files dealing with the Oberlin Golf Club and its lease from Oberlin College, and the files relating to the transfer of Westervelt Hall to the City of Oberlin. In addition, Oberlin College’s involvement in the Great Lakes Colleges Association (GLCA) is documented here. This subgroup is divided into six series: 1. Oberlin College; 2. Oberlin Community; 3. Northern Ohio; 4. State of Ohio; 5. Regional; and 6. National.
The records of the Office of Business and Finance are arranged as follows:
I. Administrative Files of the Vice-President for Business and Finance (Governance Files)
1. Board of Trustees Files
I. Minutes of the Board of Trustees
II. Minutes of the Executive Committee
III. Minutes of the Investment Committee
IV. Minutes of Miscellaneous Committees
2. Correspondence with the Board of Trustees
3. Correspondence with the President
4. Presidential Staff Meetings Files
II. Administrative Records of the Vice-President for Business and Finance (General Files)
1. Auditing Reports
2. Budgetary Records
I. Budgets (Institutional)
II. Buildings and Grounds Budgets
III. Departmental Budgets
IV. Educational and General Budgets
V. Housing and Dining Budgets
VI. Salary and Benefits Budget(s)
VII. Budget Projections/Planning
VIII. Budget—General Allocations/Changes
IX. Budget—Benefit related files
X. Budget—Salary related files
3. Investment and Endowment Files
I. Investment and Endowment Records
II. Custodian Statements
III. Operating Statements
IV. Tax Files
4. Grants and Loans Files
5. Contracts, Leases and Real Estate Files
I. Contracts and Leases Files
II. Real Estate Files
6. Insurance and Health Plan Files
7. Chronological Files
8. General Correspondence Files
I. Colleges and Universities
III. Memoranda and General Files
9. Administrative Departments
10. Files relating to Allen Memorial Hospital (See also Records of the V.P. for
Finance RG 54)
11. Topical Files
III. Personnel Records
1. Bargaining Units/Classified Groups
2. Staff Appointment Files
3. Topical Files
4. Service Employee Files
IV. Academic Divisions, Departments, and Programs Files
1. Academic Divisions
2. Academic Departments
3. Academic Programs
V. Buildings and Grounds Files
1. Annual Reports
2. General Files
3. Buildings (Business and Finance Office Files), A-Z
4. Buildings (Physical Plant Department Files), A-Z
5. Files relating to the Hall Arboretum (copies)
VI. Committee Files
VII. Organizations and Associations
1. Oberlin College
2. Oberlin Community
3. Northern Ohio
4. State of Ohio
Note: Accession 1996/061 contains materials related to several series listed in the outline above. The accession was kept separate from the remainder of the collection due to its size (13.75 l.f.). The inventory for this accession begins on page 62 and cross references appear in the main inventory for related files found in 1996/061.