About CASE

Pam Russell
director of communications


For Immediate Release
March 31, 2011

CASE Announces Director of New Center for Community College Advancement

Paul HeatonWASHINGTON, D.C.—The Council for Advancement and Support of Education has appointed Paul C. Heaton, director of public relations at Northwestern Michigan College in Traverse City, Mich., as director of the new CASE Center for Community College Advancement. The appointment is effective May 2.

Heaton joins CASE after five years at NMC where he has been responsible for public relations, marketing and communications. He also supported the college's fundraising efforts, which earned a CASE-WealthEngine award for overall performance in 2007.

Heaton will lead the development of a new CASE Center for Community College Advancement, which will provide training and resources to help community colleges build and sustain effective fundraising, alumni relations and communications and marketing programs. CASE will serve members through a mix of programs and products designed specifically for community colleges as well as resources developed for educational institutions of all types. The center is scheduled to launch in July.

CASE President John Lippincott said Heaton's community college experience and broad understanding of higher education made him stand out during the national search for the center's inaugural director.

"Community colleges today face unique enrollment and funding challenges, and CASE is deeply committed to helping them meet those challenges through strong fundraising, alumni relations, communications, and marketing programs," Lippincott said. "While community colleges serve nearly half of all undergraduates enrolled in higher education, they attract less than two percent of philanthropic support for colleges and universities. Our goal for the new center is to become a premier source of benchmarking data, best practices and training in all of the advancement areas in order to address the specialized needs of community colleges and their foundations.

"Paul brings to this important role an understanding of community college advancement, exceptional communication skills and a background developing initiatives that support the overall mission of educational institutions," he added.

In addition to his work at a community college, Heaton has held leadership positions in marketing, communications, public relations and student media at Eastern Michigan University and the Interlochen Center for the Arts in Michigan and at Ithaca College in New York. Prior to working in higher education, he was an editor and bureau chief for the St. Petersburg Times in Florida.

"I look forward to bringing the wealth of resources available through CASE to community colleges throughout the country," Heaton said. "Community colleges in many places are the unsung heroes of higher education. CASE will bring a comprehensive approach to community college advancement efforts that is timely and very much needed."

CASE plans to appoint an advisory group of representatives from community colleges throughout the country to assist with the launch of the center.

About CASE

The Council for Advancement and Support of Education is a professional association serving educational institutions and the advancement professionals who work on their behalf in alumni relations, communications, development, marketing and allied areas.

CASE was founded in 1974 and maintains headquarters in Washington, D.C., with offices in London (CASE Europe, 1994), Singapore (CASE Asia-Pacific, 2007) and Mexico City (CASE América Latina, 2011).

Today, CASE’s membership includes more than 3,670 colleges and universities, primary and secondary independent and international schools, and nonprofit organizations in more than 80 countries around the globe. This makes CASE one of the world’s largest nonprofit educational associations in terms of institutional membership. CASE serves nearly 81,000 advancement practitioners on the staffs of its member institutions and has more than 17,000 professional members on its roster.

To fulfill their missions and to meet both individual and societal needs, colleges, universities and independent schools rely on—and therefore must foster—the good will, active involvement, informed advocacy and enduring support of alumni, donors, prospective students, parents, government officials, community leaders, corporate executives, foundation officers and other external constituencies.

CASE helps its members build stronger relationships with all of these constituencies by providing relevant research, supporting growth in the profession and fostering support of education. CASE also offers a variety of advancement products and services, provides standards and an ethical framework for the profession and works with other organizations to respond to public issues of concern while promoting the importance of education worldwide.