Lester McKenzie has over 28 years of student financial aid experience in all four major sectors, two-year, four-year public, four-year private and for-profit institutions. Lester came to Financial Aid Services (FAS) in 2018. As a consultant, he supports financial aid offices across the country. He provides Interim Staffing, Consulting and Assessment services to improve business processes, strengthen compliance efforts and enhance student satisfaction.
His previous experience includes 24 of his 28 years as a director. He served in many positions in state and regional professional organizations, including president of the Tennessee Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators (TASFAA) in 2011-12. He has also served the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators (NASFAA), as chair of the Compliance Engine and Policy/Procedure Manual Committee and as an adjunct faculty member for a number of NASFAA credentialing courses. For 12 years prior to joining FAS, he was director of financial aid at Tennessee Technological University, his alma mater.
Lester is experienced with several financial aid software systems, including Ellucian (SunGard) Banner, Ellucian (Datatel) Colleague and the U.S. Department of Education’s suite of applications and website for administering federal student aid.
Lester is an active trainer with experience leading groups on the national level at the NASFAA conference, served as training chair in 2017/18 for his state association, covering topics from campus-based programs to student eligibility. He has also served as treasurer of the North Carolina Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators (NC ASFAA, TN ASFAA), and his regional association Southern Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators (SASFAA). He has been responsible for completing annual surveys and the Fiscal Operations Report and Application to Participate (FISAP), along with counseling students and striving to excel at bringing the foundations of financial aid to those he has worked with.
Lester received his Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from Tennessee Tech University, his Master’s in Adult Education from East Carolina University and is all but dissertation (ABD) on an EdD in Policy Analysis from East Tennessee State University.