Engaging Students in Philanthropy Symposium


Symposium Chair

Josh Harraman

Josh Harraman
Associate Vice President for Alumni Relations
Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey

Josh Harraman joined the Rutgers University Alumni Association as its new associate vice president for alumni relations in September 2017. Harraman previously served as the senior director for alumni and constituent engagement at The Ohio State University.

During his 10 years at The Ohio State University Alumni Association, Harraman was an exemplary leader, driving various initiatives, including launching a regional engagement effort, developing young alumni programming and the Young Alumni Academy, and supporting efforts that resulted in investments totaling more than $700,000 for incoming first-year student scholarships.

Harraman received his bachelor’s degree in history from The Ohio State University and his master’s degree in college student personnel from Bowling Green State University. He is pursuing a doctorate in educational philosophy at The Ohio State University, and expects to complete the program in 2019.


Felicity Meu

Felicity Lark-Hei Meu
Director, Partner Success and GiveCampus
Consultant, Stanford’s Effective Philanthropy Lab

Felicity Meu is a consultant with the Stanford Effective Philanthropy Lab as well as director of partner success for GiveCampus, the leading social fundraising platform for educational institutions. Previously, she served as director of Next Generation Giving at Stanford, where she helped to develop a long-term strategy for encouraging philanthropy among the university's young donors and future leaders, in light of significant demographic shifts and changing preferences. In addition to maintaining a major and principal gift portfolio, she also helped pilot new programs and technologies for the development office.

Previously, Meu spent 10 years at the University of California at Berkeley, her alma mater, as director of Cal Adventures, an outdoor education program, where she specialized in leadership development and team building. She also spent two years as a leadership consultant traveling to more than 60 universities. She volunteers for a variety of nonprofits and recently served as a member of the Chancellor's Task Force on Engagement for her alma mater, UC Berkeley.

Brian Gawor

Brian Gawor
Vice President for Research
Ruffalo Noel Levitz

Brian Gawor serves as vice president  for research at Ruffalo Noel Levitz. His focus is research and strategy to help propel the fundraising results of clients.

Gawor has 14+ years of higher education experience in student affairs, enrollment management and development. He began his career directing the student ambassador phoning and campus tour programs of Knox College, his alma mater. His efforts supported the achievement of record enrollment at Knox which continues today. He then joined the college's $3 million Knox Fund and, with the help of Ruffalo Noel Levitz's on-site management, set an institutional record for alumni donors during a tough economy. Most recently, Gawor served for four years as director of development for the College of Fine Arts at Illinois State University.

He is currently completing a doctorate at Illinois State University, where he is studying higher education donors, fundraising and the experiences of student fundraisers.

John Tatum Grice

John Tatum Grice
Director of Annual Giving, Young Donors & Digital Strategies
Oklahoma State University

John Tatum Grice began his career in philanthropy as a Student Foundation member at Kansas State University serving within the K-State Proud Student Campaign. This experience jump-started his passion for higher education philanthropy. Following graduation in 2012, John began his tenure in KSU Foundation's Annual Giving department focused on direct mail, phonathon, student philanthropy, and student life fundraising. In April of 2014, John accepted a role at the Oklahoma State University Foundation and is currently charged with developing student giving, young alumni programs, and digital giving strategies.

Natasha Kanakkanatt

Natasha Kanakkanatt
Regional Engagement Officer, Northeast and Midwest U.S.
The Ohio State University

Natasha Kanakkanatt joined the alumni association in 2015 as the assistant director of young alumni engagement. In this role, she was responsible for managing and executing programs and projects to engage young alumni of Ohio State. She currently serves as the regional engagement officer for the Northeast and Midwest United States and connects Buckeyes in these regions to each other and to university activities.

Prior to her time with OSUAA, Kanakkanatt served as the director of constituent relations and annual giving at St. Vincent- St. Mary High School.

Julia Palmer

Julia Palmer
Senior Manager, Student Organizations
Georgia Institute of Technology Alumni Association

Julie Palmer has been with the Georgia Institute of Technology Alumni Association since June 2015, and serves as the advisor for the Georgia Tech Student Foundation, the Georgia Tech Student Ambassadors, and co-advisor for the Georgia Tech Student Alumni Association. She is very passionate about student philanthropy, student and alumni programs and loves engaging student leaders in the creation and implementation of those programs.

During her time at Georgia Tech, Palmer managed the “Philanthropy at Tech” campaign, a partnership between the Student Foundation and Office of Development, which resulted in the largest visual campaign in Tech history. Probably her proudest advising moment was when the student organizations reached over 7,000 student donors for the first time ever. In addition to student philanthropy programs, she also works with alumni connection programs, the Gold & White Honors Gala (a fundraising event for alumni/student programs), and manages the tours and events for the Georgia Tech Student Ambassadors.

Prior to her current role, Palmer served as the advisor for the Student Alumni Connection and student philanthropy programs at Bowling Green State University in Bowling Green, OH. She earned a dual bachelor’s degree in Interpersonal & Organizational Communication and Government & Politics from George Mason University, and her master’s degree in College Student Personnel from Bowling Green State University.

Lynne M. Pierce

Lynne Pierce
Associate Director for Student and Young Alumni Programs
Ithaca College

For almost 25 years, Lynne Pierce has worked to help create a community with Ithaca College students, alumni, parents, faculty, staff and friends. She began in residential life, and moved to the development office in 2000. There she spent the next eight years in the Ithaca College Annual Fund where, among other duties, she was responsible for creating and advising the Senior Class Gift Campaign Committee.

In 2008 a position was created in the Office of Alumni Relations to develop and manage the student and young alumni programs at the college. Since that time, Pierce has worked to cultivate a culture of philanthropy amongst the students and young alumni of Ithaca College. As adviser to Ithaca College's Students Today Alumni Tomorrow, she supports them in their mission to promote further student involvement in the college community by building traditions, seeking links between students and alumni, and encouraging pride and spirit within the Ithaca College family.

Pierce earned a bachelor's degree in criminal justice and psychology from King's College and a master's degree in education from the State University of New York at Binghamton.