Johnson, J. Lee

  • Title: Senior Vice President for Business and Finance
  • Department: Business Office
  • Ph.D., University of Toledo; M.B.A. in Economics, Bowling Green State University; B.S. in Finance, The Ohio State University.
  • Phone: 517-264-7108
  • Campus: Adrian
  • Building: Sacred Heart Hall
  • Office #: 203
  • About
Senior Vice President for Business and Finance


Dr. Johnson serves as the Senior Vice President and Treasurer for Siena Heights University. Lee is a native Midwesterner with a history of active involvement in public and private postsecondary education. He was a senior-level administrator for Lawrence Technological University and the Medical College of Ohio (now the Health Sciences Center of the University of Toledo) and has held a number of faculty appointments.

Lee received his Ph.D. in Higher Education Administration and Minor in Law from the University of Toledo; a Masters of Business Administration specializing in economics from Bowling Green State University; and a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration majoring in Finance from The Ohio State University. He completed post-graduate education at the University of Oxford, Harvard University, and The Ohio State University. A certified public accountant, he is a member of both Michigan and Ohio societies for certified public accountants.

A respected Peer Reviewer and Team Chair for the Higher Learning Commission (HLC), Lee also serves on HLC’s Institutional Actions Council and is a Mentor for new Peer Reviewers and Team Chairs. He is a founding member of HLC’s Financial Advisory Panel and consults on the early detection of institutions in financial distress. Lee identifies with and is conscious of the diversity higher education institutions offer and the essential linkages between mission and governance, planning and resources, and assessments.

Dr. Johnson has proven to be a highly effective and personable executive with a strong personal dedication to quality education and cost-effective processes. His resourcefulness includes focusing on organization and change; strategic resource planning; cultivating partnerships; fostering the usefulness of website behavior-based content for students, alumni, donors, and other online visitors; reviewing undergraduate and graduate program offerings; and improving upon the efficiencies of campus services. He has led and participated in a variety of planning processes as well as overseen or assisted on a variety of capital expansion programs.

Lee has also been part of fundraising efforts with corporate partners and benefactors, which have positively impacted endowments and programs. He has the widespread respect both inside and outside the University community for his transparency, integrity, openness, intellectual courage, and sense of humor. His dossier includes a desirable publication and presentation record as well as classroom and online teaching experiences.

Dr. Johnson supports the community by being President of the University of Toledo Alumni Association, Board Chair of Hospice of Lenawee County, a member of the Endowment Committee for the First United Methodist Church of Adrian, and serves on the Finance Committee for Habitat for Humanity at Lenawee County.  

From these experiences, Lee has gained contemporary insights that have sharpened his understanding of best practices and good judgments and often called upon for advice and consultation. He enjoys taking batting practice with Siena’s Baseball Team, jogging, and skiing. Lee is a family man with three children, two grandchildren, and a grandbaby expected in March 2018.