AT32. School and College-based Alumni Engagement with Caitlin Johnson

On this episode,  I visit with Caitlin Johnson, Director of Alumni Engagement at the University of Michigan Ross School of Business.

Trendlines include:

  • building a college-based engagement program;
  • college-based affiliate groups; and
  • engagement through COVID.

Caitlin Johnson facilitates, maintains, and grows relationships connecting alumni back to the business school and bring people together to continue to support the mission of the school; building a better world through positive business.

As Director of Alumni Engagement for the Stephen M. Ross School of Business, she manages and executes various alumni programs that connect Michigan Ross alumni with the school through new and existing programs for engagement. She has expertise and experience in engagement strategy, program execution and relationship building with both internal and external audiences.

AT31. Data and Customization in 2021 with Jennifer Heisey

On this episode,  I visit with Jennifer Heisey, Chief Alumni Relations Officer for the University of Cincinnati and we discuss data and customization for richer alumni engagement. 

Trendlines include:

  • learnings from 2020;
  • optimism for 2021; and
  • her plan to leverage data to customize alumni engagement.

Jennifer Heisey is the executive director of UCAA and vice president of alumni relations for the University of Cincinnati Foundation.

Before Cincinnati, Heisey served as associate vice president for alumni relations and annual giving as well as the executive director of the alumni association at the University of Louisville. Prior to that, she led alumni affairs efforts for SUNY College at Buffalo. She has more than 21 years of experience serving higher education institutions where she developed exemplary leadership, advancement and relationship building skills.

AT30. What did you learn in 2020 with Mike Worley

A conversation with the Vice President for Advancement at Lander University (SC), Mike Worley, about learnings from 2020 and the state of higher education advancement.

Trend lines:
– learnings from 2020;
– looking forward to 2021; and
– launching a campaign in 2021.

With more than 20 years of  experience in philanthropy, Worley became the Vice President for Advancement and Executive director of the Lander University Foundation in October of 2018.  Prior to Lander he served as Senior Associate Vice President for Constituent Relations at Georgia State University, where he led a team of fundraisers and helped steer the university’s $300 million capital campaign.

Worley also had stints at Washington University (St. Louis), East Carolina University, and Ohio University. He has served in leadership roles with Sisters of St. Mary (SSM) Health Care Foundations and Cardinal Glennon Children’s Hospital in Missouri. He earned a bachelor’s degree in Sport Sciences and a master’s in Athletic Administration from Ohio University.

Connect with Mike on LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/in/advancement/ and instagram at @bearcatphilanthropy.  

AT28. Digital Engagement, Podcasting, and Conversations about Race with Viannca Velez

What’s Up Trendsetters!

Today, I talk with Viannca Velez, Director of Alumni Communication and Digital Engagement at Seton Hall University. Our trend lines include:
– ramping up digital engagement,
– podcasting, and
– conversations about racial equality.

Bio
Viannca Velez
Director, Alumni Communication and Digital Engagement, Seton Hall University

Viannca Velez is the Director of Alumni Communication and Digital Engagement at Seton Hall University, her alma mater. Prior to her start in the Advancement profession she worked in media in New York, including as a Video Journalist for FiOS1 News -Long Island, Manager of the Digital Video Advertising Program at New Generation Latino Media, and as a freelancer for SNY sports network. She spends her free time dancing and drumming in a Puerto Rican Folkloric band, Segunda Quimbamba and podcasting.

AT27. Examining How Alumni Make Sense of Their Relationships with their Alma Maters with Dr. Kevin Fleming

What’s Up Trendsetters!

Today, I talk with Dr. Kevin Fleming, Co-Founder and CEO of Prosper, a consulting firm that provides guidance to nonprofit organizations to transform their engagement and philanthropic programs, specializing in fundraising practice, Board management, volunteer programs, event planning, and communications.
Today’s trend lines include:
– student experience is the strongest indicator of alumni involvement,
– pots of water framework for alumni engagement, and 
– trends in higher education.

Bio
Kevin has 20 years of expertise in alumni engagement and non-profit management, paired with exceptional knowledge and skills within the realms of college student development and teaching.  Through experiences at Mount Holyoke College, Emerson College, the University of Massachusetts Amherst, Bowling Green State University, the University of Connecticut, and James Madison University, he has led transformations of alumni boards of directors, overall alumni engagement and communications strategies, volunteer programs, signature events, staffing alignments, and cross-departmental collaborations at several institutions.  Kevin approaches organizational change through excellent listening skills, a positive and collaborative nature, collegiality, humor, and gratitude, providing the foundation through which he fosters unity and common purpose amongst community members and the accomplishment of shared successes.

An educator and researcher by nature, Kevin’s background in teaching makes him an excellent meeting facilitator. Additionally, he is a thought leader in the areas of alumni engagement and fundraising.  He authored his dissertation on “Examining the Influence of Graduate Student Experience on Graduate Alumni Giving,” and has published a ground-breaking theory of alumni engagement in the peer-reviewed Journal of Philanthropy and Education, entitled “The Pots of Water Framework for Alumni Engagement.” He also serves as a member of the Council and Support of Education (CASE) District I Board of Directors, and serves as the co-chair of the Horizon Issues Committee.

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“A great resource for our profession.”

Cindy Fredrick
University of Virginia