About CASE
Member Anecdotes

Members discuss CASE and what their professional association has meant to them in celebration of CASE's 30th anniversary (2004).


CASE became my mentor organization when I moved to development after stints as a professor and admissions dean. From the beginning, CASE members provided insight, shared their experiences, and set the bar high for professional behavior and expectations. Lee Harlan and Ted Gibbens at Pomona College urged me to become involved, and now after many dozens of volunteer experiences, CASE still provides the framework for my professional life.
Bill Lowery, Partner, Bentz Whaley Flessner & Associates, Member Since 1980


CASE has not only helped me make valuable connections professionally, it has helped make equally valuable lifelong friendships.
– Ed Ziegler, Director of University Marketing, Rowan University, Member Since 1974


In July 1983, I attended the CASE Summer Institute in Educational Fund Raising. This was my first formal training in fundraising though I had responsibility for the alumni annual fund since joining SUNY Brockport in 1981. It led me to expanded responsibilities for another 13 years at SUNY Brockport and was the foundation on which my career has been built.
Patrick S. Madama, Vice President for Institutional Advancement, New York City College of Technology, City University of New York, Member Since 1981


I remember being at a meeting of the ACPRA in Sacramento, Calif. The discussion was lively as to the merits of creating this new combined organization. Then as now, the concern was having too many types of jobs under a single tent. Over the 30 years, it has been clear to me that we have gained more with a combined "advancement" organization.
– John W. Crowe, Vice President for Advancement, Claremont Graduate University, Member Since 1974


I truly appreciate CASE for providing me and my staff an invaluable resource to me throughout my career. I have always found district and national conferences to be well done and a productive use of my time, particularly at points in my career where I have taken on new responsibilities. The network of colleagues in CASE that I developed through my leadership role in CASE District I and as a presenter at national conferences has truly benefited my personal and professional life, for which I am truly grateful.
– Kathryn Battillo, Vice President for Advancement, Suffolk University, Member Since 1981


CASE conferences were part of my education in publications and periodicals, and Charles Helmken was a mentor to us all. (His creativity at CASE and in programming is sorely missed.) I served on two CASE commissions-communications and alumni affairs-and regularly attended at least one CASE-related conference of workshop each year until recently. My favorite memories are hanging out with the CASE staff during the closing banquet and crashing the president's reception afterwards.
– Sam Hull, Associate Editor, Duke Magazine, Member Since 1980


CASE has always been a good resource of professional development and services over the years. I remember specifically the International Conference in Toronto in 1982. Still relatively new to the industry at the time, I was impressed with the Statement of Ethics that was adopted that year. That statement says a lot about who we are as individuals and the institutions we support and promote. Congratulations to everyone at CASE, past and current, for a job well done!
– Stephen R. Kuhn, Vice President for Institutional Advancement, Dominican University, Member Since 1980


When I was first hired as director of parents program at the age of 25, I attended my first CASE conference within six months. I knew very little about advancement or CASE. However, I assessed the profession by those attending the conference and what I had been reading in CURRENTS. It seemed to me, someone who was early in their professional career, that this truly was my calling. I realized that the majority of people at the conference were in their second career and appeared to be in their 40s and 50s. I did the math and knew that if I stayed with this as a profession, I would not only enjoy what I was doing, not only feel like I was doing a valued service for higher education ... I understood that in 20 years many of those people I was meeting would be retiring. The opportunity for professional growth was limitless. So I stayed with the profession and CASE. My predictions were correct. I have to wonder how many new professionals at CASE conferences see me and are doing the math.
– James Salmo, Senior Executive Director of Advancement, University of Missouri-Columbia, Member Since 1984


Being a part of CASE when it was young and the result of AAC and ACPRA joining hands was an exciting time for those of us in development, since it represented an opportunity to share and to learn development experiences and focus on a professional basis. Until then, one either joined American Alumni Council or American College Public Relations Association since that's all there was. Fundraising could not or was not featured at either except on a session-only basis at conferences. It felt as if we were finally being or could be recognized as colleagues and professionals in the relatively new field of higher education fundraising.
– Thomas Kolda, Director of Gift Planning, Case Western University, Member Since 1974


I've had the pleasure of representing Ohio's largest four-year and two-year colleges at CASE. That is a distinction that I'm sure no other CASE or Ohio member can boast.
– Gary Honnert, Director of Public Information, Sinclair Community College, Member Since 1980


I remember well my first conference-a District VII one in San Francisco-and thinking what a wonderful organization CASE was, and how I hoped I might be able to get involved-little did I realize then, my relationship with CASE would be deep and lifelong!
– Patricia P. Jackson, Associate Vice President, Dartmouth College, Member Since 1983


I remember the very first CASE Summer Institute for Newcomers at Franklin Pierce College in New Hampshire. It was a once-in-a-lifetime experience for faculty and participants alike. I have enjoyed watching the annual CASE/NAIS Conference grow into one of the largest and most profitable conferences CASE runs. This is a wonderful tribute to independent school development professionals throughout the country.
– L. John Lauerman, Jr., Director of Development, Oregon Episcopal School, Member Since 1981


As a newcomer in university communication in the early 1970s, I went to ACPRA and then CASE district conferences, but knew I needed more than the conferences could provide. I wrote to CASE and Virginia Carter Smith wrote back, urging that I attend the Summer Institute in Communication, then held at Notre Dame. The institute was superb in giving me a rich overview of the profession-and introducing me to Ginny who remained a special colleague for me as she was to many. Being a volunteer for CASE has been a part of my professional life ever since, both at the district and international level.
– Barbara B. Petura, Associate Vice President for University Relations, Washington State University


There are so many. One that sticks out is the three days Charlie Helmken held a bunch of us hostage in the basement of a Japanese Hotel in San Francisco. I was inspired, and not only professionally. I came home and designed a Japanese-style shower/ bathroom for our apartment in the firehouse. I never use it as intended but it remains as a lasting memento of Charlie.
– Bernice Thieblot, Founding Creative Director, NCSDO, Member Since 1974


Actually, I entered this profession in 1968, six year's prior to CASE's "birth." My first conference was the Alumni Council/Public Relations Association Conference in Chicago. I recall walking outside and seeing the John Hancock Building under construction! I also remember winning a travel bag (beginner's luck). But as I compare CASE in 1974 and CASE now, I really don't think that the essence of the mission really has changed. The scope of what CASE does is broader, of course. The depth of activity is greater, driven by all advancement has become. Elements we could never have imagined in 1974 have appeared, such as technology. Indeed, we even have entirely new professional partners, such as advancement services. But the heart of the place? It's about the same. It's just beating so much faster!
– Ron Stephany, Vice President for University Relations, University of Redlands, Member Since 1974


I have lots of cheerful memories-summer institute teaching, chairing the annual assembly, a presidential search committee, trustee retreats at Wye Woods, working with hugely talented staffers like Julie Landes and Paul Chewning, trying to write well enough to please Ginny Carter Smith, being surprised with the CASE Crystal Apple award, and mainly all the friendships and helpful advice that CASE truly stands for.
– Bill Stone, Principal, eAdvancement, Member Since 1977