Mike Shriner joined UTMB in 1993 and is the vice president of Business Operations and Facilities. In his role, he oversees more than 400 employees working in various support areas, including Property Services, Design and Construction Services, Supply Chain, Campus Planning, Real Estate, Utilities, Environmental Health and Safety, Institutional Emergency Preparedness and Auxiliary Services. He also serves as UTMB’s responsible officer for federally restricted research activities and security of radioactive materials.
Prior to UTMB, Shriner served as the campus architect for the University of Nebraska Medical Center and directed major facilities projects for the clinical programs and the Epply Cancer Institute. Shriner is a licensed architect and graduated from the University of Nebraska with degrees from the College of Engineering and College of Architecture, as well as an MBA.
What does the Road Ahead look like for you?
For the services we provide at UTMB, the Road Ahead must adapt to delivering services at multiple sites with consistent quality. That will mean we need to better define the services needed by our customers. We’ll also need to focus on making sure our workforce has multiple skill sets to address a broader array of customer needs. On the personal front, the Road Ahead for me includes higher delegation of duties at UTMB and getting more time with family. Hard work alone will not allow us to meet goals—we need to approach them with a balanced plan of sweat, creativity and personal downtime.
UTMB is growing at an astronomical rate with the new Jennie Sealy Hospital nearing completion, as well as campuses and clinics on the mainland popping up. What are some of the biggest challenges you face when it comes to managing the institution’s growth?
Our biggest issue will be recruiting and retaining human talent. With a major portion of our workforce due to retire in the next few years, we have a need to pass on institutional knowledge and to grow into new services for our varied customers and technologies.
You’ve been at UTMB since 1993—did you ever dream we’d be where we are today?
No. I am a planner by nature and my plan was to be at UTMB for five to seven years and then move on to another academic medical center. Then I met my wife Beth and found a great church. The “adjustment” to my plan was made easy since UTMB is a great place to work and Galveston is a great place to live. The challenges that have continued to come at us have kept my interest high and have allowed for a very fulfilling professional experience.
What do you enjoy most about your job?
I tell people that I have the best job at UTMB. The role oversees infrastructure and services that are critical to our daily operational success and at the same time includes interaction with our faculty and staff to understand the needs of new programs and the development of strategic plans for each of our missions. If I need to get away from my desk, I can simply take a walk around campus and most people think I am working!
What do you like to do when you’re not at work?
Beth and I enjoy walking a great deal. We try to get out there every day and sometimes twice! I find it a great time to share issues and get some fresh air since most of my workday is spent inside. I also enjoy reading and am currently reading the biography of John Adams.
What is the one thing most people don’t know about you?
That even though I spend my day in meetings, I am an introvert and that it takes a huge amount of my energy to be with groups (hence the walking and reading when I get home).
What’s something you’ve always wanted to do but have not done yet?
I have been blessed to be able to travel and see a fair amount of the world with some early help from the U.S. Marine Corps and lately with the encouragement of my co-traveler Beth! My goal is more about time—time to enjoy the families of our grown children who stretch from Florida to Nebraska to Texas. And time to take the grandkids on some outings.