Christine M. Smith

Christine M. Smith

Managing Director

+1 (608) 240 2391

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Christine is a Managing Director in the higher education and risk advisory practices. She has advised Baker Tilly clients nationally on aligning strategy and effective operations, improving fiscal condition and accountability, and creating value-added partnerships since 1998. In this role, she works collaboratively with our clients on transformative efforts to ensure fiscal sustainability and mission viability. Her focus within higher education includes strategic finance, shared services strategy and operations design, enterprise services execution, and performance optimization.  Frequently leads or advises on co-sourced internal audit services to higher education clients through governance structure design, risk assessment, and accountability framework development projects.  Christine also often serves as a subject matter expert on human capital management issues.

Her valued clients include a broad range of traditional four-year and research universities, private colleges, community and technical colleges, and university systems and extensions across the nation.

  • Advises clients on organizational transformation with a focus on effective transition governance and planning, strategic resource alignment, accountability frameworks and fiscal position improvement.
  • Leads fiscal sustainability efforts including data analytics/dashboard development and resource optimization/cost reduction assessments with an emphasis on strategic resource alignment.
  • Has lead more than 200 assessments of how to structure and use resources to enhance achievement of strategic priorities and ensure mission viability including how to reallocate resources to positively impact student success.
  • Christine’s work in strategic finance, organizational effectiveness, and resource optimization spans over 30 years in the public and not for profit sectors. Prior to her position with Baker Tilly she worked as a Legislative Liaison, Budget & Policy Analyst, and Human Resource Manager for the Wisconsin Department of Transportation during her 10 year tenure there.
  • Speaks regularly on strategic finance, enterprise services and resource optimization topics for regional and national higher education associations.
  • Convenes industry-specialized roundtables of chief financial officers, chief human resource officers, general counsel and chief audit executives
  • Leads development of Baker Tilly’s higher education thought leadership and authors articles for industry publications on shared service and strategic alignment of resources.
  • Chairs the Risk Committee for the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire Foundation Board.
  • Member Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) and Institute of internal Auditors (IIA)


Madison, WI


University of Wisconsin - Eau Claire
Bachelor of Business Administration-magna cum laude

University of Wisconsin - Madison
Concentration in Public Program Evaluation

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