Nathalie joined Queen’s University Belfast as Director of Development and Alumni Relations in July 2019. Prior to that she was the CEO of the Dublin City University Educational Trust; Director of External Affairs at the Cambridge Judge Business School; and Head of Alumni Relations at the University of Cambridge. Nathalie is the Co-Chair for this year’s CASE Europe annual conference and is the recipient of CASE’s Crystal Apple and Distinguished Service Award. //She’s a Trustee of the Bridge Group, a not-for-profit consultancy that uses research to promote social equality, and is a big fan of Park Run, regularly pushing her small child up large hills in a running buggy!
Tristan is currently the Deputy Director of Alumni Engagement & Annual Giving at Durham University and is responsible for both the strategic and operational delivery of key integrated activities including events, communications, volunteering and annual giving to a global alumni community of over 200,000 alumni and supporters. With over 17 years extensive business experience of alumni and corporate relations, fundraising, business development, international recruitment, communications, marketing, sales and customer led service provision, Tristan has held senior management roles both in the UK and Australia and brings a global perspective from over a decade of international stakeholder engagement. Tristan is a passionate supporter of, and long standing volunteer to CASE and is focused on enhancing the Advancement profession through mentoring, the sharing of best practice and ideas and networking with colleagues across the world.
Nena is in charge of the strategic direction and overall smooth operation of the Alumni Relations Office at CEU, responsible for the engagement of over 18,000 alumni in 150 countries. She works closely with members of the alumni relations team on designing and implementing projects and initiatives across program areas, including fundraising, events, services, communication, volunteer engagement and data management. A number of recent successful alumni engagement initiatives have been developed under her leadership, including the robust alumni response in support of alumni fleeing the war in Ukraine this spring. Nena brings over fifteen years of international experience in the higher education sector. Prior to CEU she was managing programs at CASE Europe in London, the Institute of International Education (IIE) and Open Society Foundation (OSF) in Budapest. A firm believer in collaboration and the power of sharing best practice, Nena is active CASE volunteer and has served as speaker, editorial board and task force member.
Kurstin Finch Gnehm
Kurstin Finch Gnehm is a senior fundraiser with experience leading across major gifts, individual giving, legacies, and advancement services. She currently works as the deputy director of philanthropy at the Royal Academy of Music, the U.K.’s top conservatoire, where she looks after individual giving, stewardship, legacies and events. Previously, Kurstin served as regular giving manager for Imperial College London, where her team recently won a CASE Award and the 2016 London Marathon award for most money raised per charity runner. She has also worked in the fundraising team for two of the U.K.’s ancient universities, the University of Aberdeen and the University of St Andrews, where she served as part of the 600th anniversary campaign team. Kurstin started her fundraising career at Linfield University in the United States and holds degrees from Linfield, Oregon State University, and the University of Iowa, where she has also taught communication and gender studies classes. She has a seat on the Learning and Development Committee at the Institute of Fundraising and co-chairs the fundraising track of the CASE Europe Annual Conference. Areas of expertise include data-driven fundraising, regulatory change, and stakeholder management, and Kurstin regularly writes and speaks about fundraising for the IDPE and CASE Europe.
David J. Haines is Head of Philanthropy, University Programmes at the University of Edinburgh. His fundraising remit spans major gifts for strategic priorities across the University, chief among which is widening participation.
David started his fundraising career at youth charity, Venture Trust, before moving into Educational Advancement at the University of Stirling. He joined Edinburgh in early 2019 from the Development office of Monash University in Melbourne, Australia, where he developed and launched Monash’s first comprehensive fundraising campaign ‘Change it. For good.’, now well ahead of schedule to raise half a billion dollars from 50,000 donors. Please don’t ask him if he’s missing the weather.
Outside of work, he is mostly on a Scottish beach with his young family and not writing about himself in the third person.
Claire Brown is the Director of Communications, Marketing and Student Recruitment at the University of Manchester, the UK’s largest single-site University. Claire began her marketing career in the FMCG sector but then moved into Higher Education, joining the University of Liverpool in 2000 where her career culminated in her appointment as Director of External Relations, Marketing and Communications. Claire is a Fellow of the CIM and a former trustee of CASE Europe.
Lorraine is Chief Marketing Officer and Vice President International at Bangor University, the latest step in a career in higher education marketing and communications which spans nearly 20 years. With experience of the needs of both small specialist institutions, with five years as Director at Harper Adams University, and large post 92 universities, Birmingham City and Manchester Met, Lorraine has faced a broad range of challenges. Throughout her career she has remained focused on the indivisible link between student recruitment, widening participation, brand and reputation.
Marnie joined the University of Brighton in September 2019 as their Director of Philanthropy & Alumni Engagement. She has over 20 years’ experience as a fundraiser working across the cultural, heritage and higher education sectors. She has worked for the Roundhouse (Camden), King’s College London, Bath Spa University, The Holburne Museum (Bath) and The Photographers’ Gallery (London). She has particular experience in the establishment of new fundraising and alumni teams, strategic development, building the donor base, and capital campaigns. She volunteered with CASE Europe on the annual Ross-CASE Survey of Charitable Giving to Universities in 2016 and 2017, and has presented at the CASE Europe Conference. She is the Co-Chair of the Board of Trustee for Attitude is Everything, a charity which improves Deaf and disabled people’s access to live music by working in partnership with audiences, artists and the music industry.
Dee Reid joined Leeds Beckett University as Director of External Relations in September 2017 where she leads internal and external communication, public affairs, alumni, events and partnerships, brand and creative and university marketing services. She has over 20 years’ experience in strategic communications, working in senior roles in local government, education, the NHS and the private sector. Before joining Leeds Beckett, she was Head of Communications and Marketing at Leeds City Council, leading communications for the UK’s third largest city and prior to that, Head of Communications for Education Leeds, providing support for the city’s 265 schools. Dee is a trustee and chair of East Street Arts, an award winning national and international arts charity, supporting artists through their development programme and by providing space as the largest studio holder outside of London.
Catherine joined Robert Gordon University in Aberdeen as Head of Marketing in September 2021. She was previously Marketing and Communications Manager at UCL for six years, with specific responsibility for the arts, humanities and social sciences. Catherine joined UCL after ten years at the University of Warwick, where she was Senior Assistant Registrar for Student Recruitment. Whilst at Warwick she also held roles in admissions, widening participation and student induction, and was a warden in university residences. Catherine began her career in higher education as an editor at UCAS, following her Masters in English at the University of Sheffield, where she was also an undergraduate. She has been involved with CASE as a speaker and session chair at the past two CEAC conferences, and is looking forward to reconnecting with former colleagues and meeting new ones at CEAC online this autumn.
Simon Fairbanks has over 14 years of experience in the Higher Education sector. This includes recruitment, marketing, and events roles on four different campuses: Nottingham, Birmingham, Warwick, and Coventry.
He recently spent two years working at Pickle Jar Communications, where he advised international schools, colleges, and universities on their content projects. He provided strategy, research, creative content, and training to help the education sector share its stories through digital communication channels.
Clients who have benefited from his expertise include AHUA, Bangor University, City & Guilds, Emory University School of Medicine, the University of Liverpool, the Office for Students, Queen Margaret University, UCL, United World Colleges, and Zurich International School.
As a published author, Fairbanks is particularly interested in storytelling, and how content strategy can deliver stories with greater impact. He spends his free time writing, running, and watching Hey Duggee with his two young children.