J T. Forbes
J T. Forbes is the chief executive officer of the Indiana University Alumni Association. He also serves as president of the Council of Alumni Association Executives Board of Directors, and past chairperson of the Big Ten Alumni Chief Executive Officers.
An experienced higher education leader, Forbes served in communications, marketing, public affairs and government relations roles at IU and Michigan State University and provided consulting on these issues for other major public research and land grant colleges. Outside of higher education, he served as the first director of state government relations for Cummins, Inc., the principal private sector staff leader for the U.S.-Brazil CEO Forum, the first policy analyst for the Indiana Senate, and as a founding member of the Indiana Commission on Community Service.
As a student, he was president of the student body on Indiana University's Bloomington campus, founded the All University Student Assembly and later served as a trustee of Indiana University and a founding member of the Philanthropic Studies Society on Indiana University's Indianapolis campus.
Jennifer Cunningham provides strategy and direction for the ways in which Lehigh engages with its 80,000 alumni around the globe. She came to Lehigh in early 2016.
Prior to that she was at Cornell University for nine years, most recently as the senior director of metrics and marketing, where she analyzed engagement data and coached staff on using it to make smarter business decisions. Before her career in alumni relations, Cunningham ran a copywriting and resume writing business and worked at several advertising agencies as an account supervisor. She also held many volunteer leadership positions for her alma mater, Cornell, and in her communities since she graduated in the early 1990s.
Lisa English has been in higher education since 1998 in the field of alumni engagement and advancement for the Rutgers University Foundation. In November 2018, her role was expanded to include oversight of operations for the RBHS development team in annual giving, communications and patient/family calling, as the new associate vice president of advancement services. She works collaboratively with the eight schools of New Jersey’s academic health center and its institutes, and also serves on the senior staff for RBHS Development and the Rutgers University Alumni Association (RUAA).
Previously, English held various roles at the RUAA and its predecessor department across all three major university locations. Her professional roles included volunteer leadership, board management and liaison to undergraduate, graduate and professional schools; she has held the positions of interim director at RU-Camden, alumni director at RU-Newark, and acting executive director for the RUAA. She is also Safe Zone certified as an LGBTQ ally.
She is chair-elect of the CASE District II board and leads its Strategic Planning Committee. CAAE (Council for Alumni Association Executives) named her as the Robert G. Forman fellow for 2016-17, where she presented on “Integrated Advancement Teams”. She has presented related topics at CASE II, NASPA, and NACRO and most recently co-presented at SUNY’s Bootcamp. She was recently published with Eileen Murphy on the topic of the value of relationships between alumni engagement and corporate relations in a featured article in Industry Sponsored Research Management newsletter, titled "Take a Structured Approach to Recruiting Alumni as Corporate Liaisons’" She is an adjunct instructor in the leadership minor at Rutgers School of Environmental and Biological Sciences.
English earned her doctorate from Rutgers Graduate School of Education; her dissertation research was on social justice practices of higher education administrators. Her master's degree is also from Rutgers and her undergraduate degree is from the University of New Hampshire.
Cindy Fredrick is the associate vice president for engagement and annual giving at the University of Virginia. She joined the office of engagement as one of the founding staff members in 2006; following a 14-year career as executive director for U.Va.’s student volunteer center.
In her current role, Fredrick supervised the transformation of U.Va.’s engagement efforts—which resulted in a nearly 500 percent increase in activities during a five year period—and currently produces more than 1,400 events each year. A significant aspect of this revitalization was the full integration of parents into traditional alumni engagement efforts through clubs, travel and lifetime learning programs.
Prior to her 20-year career at the University of Virginia, Fredrick served as the associate director for the Virginia state coalition of sexual assault crisis centers; managing director for an equity touring children’s theatre; and director of social services, admissions and recreational activities for long-term care facilities.
She holds a bachelor’s degree in social work from Luther College and a master’s degree in educational administration from California State University in Sacramento.
Kerry Gotham has 18 years of experience in higher education and advancement, currently serving as director of alumni engagement and executive director of the Brockport Alumni Association at The College at Brockport, State University of New York. Previously, he served as the director of alumni relations at Nazareth College.
Gotham has presented at multiple CASE and SUNYCUAD conferences, the Northeast Annual Giving Conference and the CASE Summit. He has been recognized as a CASE District II Faculty Star and a Grand Gold winner in the CASE Circle of Excellence awards. Serving in many volunteer capacities for CASE, he is also a member of the CASE District II Board, where he serves as co-chair of the District II Awards Program. Having co-chaired the SUNYCUAD Educational Conference in 2015, he is currently vice president and president-elect of the SUNYCUAD Board of Directors.
He received his master's degree in higher education administration from Syracuse University and a bachelor's degree in biology from Nazareth College.
Howard W. Heevner
Howard Heevner has been the assistant vice chancellor of university relations at UC Santa Cruz since 2011. In his current role, he oversees pipeline development, annual giving, and non-academic unit based fundraising. In his tenure at UC Santa Cruz he has also overseen alumni engagement, business development, constituent communications, special events, and advancement services. With nearly 20 years of higher education fundraising experience, he has held a number of roles.
Prior to coming to UC Santa Cruz, Heevner was the director of annual giving at Penn State University, the director of annual and special giving at DePaul University and the associate director of annual giving at University of Michigan. He began his career in development at the University of Iowa.
Heevner earned his bachelor's degree in journalism from the University of Iowa and his master's degree in higher education administration from Penn State.
Karen White has spent more than 20 years in higher education advancement. She is the executive director for alumni relations at the George Washington University. In this role she provides strategy and direction for the university's Colonials Weekend program and alumni affinity engagement programs. She is responsible for the overall volunteer management of GW's Alumni Association and the Mount Vernon National Advisory Council.
Prior to joining GW, she served as assistant to the president at Miami University where she directed all university ceremonies and events hosted by the President's Office. She has worked regionally and nationally to advance the alumni relations profession, serving in a variety of volunteer roles for CASE. She served as a faculty member for CASE's Institute for Senior Alumni Relations Professionals, Newcomers in Alumni Relations workshop, and Summer Institute in Alumni Relations. She recently finished her term as a CASE Commissioner on Alumni Relations.
White holds a bachelor's degree in journalism from the University of Maryland, College Park and a master's degree in college student personnel from Miami University. A CASE member for more than 20 years, she is a current member of the CASE Commission on Alumni Relations and is a contributing writer to the book From Donor to Philanthropist: The Value of Donor Education In Creating Confident, Joyful Givers.
Katie Young serves as the director of alumni relations at Greenhill School in Dallas, Texas, one of the largest co-ed independent day schools in the country. As a key member of the Advancement Leadership team, she provides direction and leadership to Greenhill’s Alumni Board.
She began working at Greenhill in 2005 as a member of the communications team and moved to the alumni office in 2013. She focuses efforts on increasing strategic engagement and alumni giving. She recently completed her term on the regional CASE IV District board and will complete her term on the global CASE Commission for Alumni Relations in April 2019.
Young has a true passion for alumni relations. She enjoys connecting with other professionals through various CASE programs and has served in volunteer roles at regional and national CASE conferences since 2008. In addition, she represents independent schools as a member of the CASE Alumni Engagement Metrics Beta group.
She earned her bachelor’s degree from the University of Oklahoma where she volunteered in the Student Activities office. She earned her master’s degree from Northeastern University focusing on nonprofit management, social media and online communities.
Amy Bronson is associate vice president of advancement resources and strategic talent management at Boston University, where she is engaged in building and sustaining an outstanding team of advancement professionals who are undertaking an enormous challenge: the first comprehensive campaign in the history of the university.
She oversees the talent management program for a staff of 225 including 17 schools and colleges at the university. Encompassing talent acquisition, organizational and learning development, human resource management, finance and administration, she partners with colleagues across the university to ensure the advancement team is ready to meet the campaign challenge.
Prior to joining BU in September 2010, Bronson led the strategic staffing initiative for the "Light the World Campaign" at Boston College. Before joining BC in 2005, she was at Harvard Law School where her many roles included managing special events, curriculum planning and program administration for executive legal education, and as a fundraiser and administrator at Baker House Alumni Center. Her prior experience includes working for Tiffany & Co. in Chicago and Houston and teaching in Athens, Greece. With more than 20 years of advancement experience, she has served in leadership roles and presented at numerous conferences.
A seasoned fundraiser and advancement and nonprofit leader, Steve Hall currently serves as the vice president for alumni relations at Boston University, one of the world’s largest private research universities. He is responsible for alumni relations, annual giving, advancement communications, athletics fundraising, and stewardship and donor relations for more than 321,000 BU alumni worldwide.
He is a member of the senior leadership team responsible for designing and executing the $1.5 billion "Choose to be Great" campaign for BU, the university’s first comprehensive campaign. Under his leadership, alumni engagement has increased six-fold to more than 900 events and meetings each year, attracting more than 50,000 attendees. The alumni participation rate has increased three percent since the campaign began in 2010.
A member of CASE for 35 years and a recipient of the Crystal Apple Award, Hall is a frequent presenter at conferences, including CASE's Summit for Leaders in Advancement. He is a frequent contributor to CASE publications and in 2012 and 2013 he chaired the CASE Senior Institute in Alumni Relations. Programs he leads, or has led, have received 43 CASE awards including four Circle of Excellence Grand Gold or Gold awards.
He served as vice chair of the Commission on Alumni Relations and as a member of the Commission on Philanthropy. In 2007-2008 he served as president of the Council of Alumni Association Executives. Hall has served on both the CASE District I and District IV Boards.
While leading the University of Houston Alumni Association, a 501 (c) 3 foundation, Hall led the creation of a 300-member alumni legislative advocacy group. He has testified before the Senate of the State of Texas on issues related to higher education and in 2013 was a panelist for the inaugural Massachusetts Public Higher Education Statewide Board of Trustees Conference.
Alexis Kanda-Olmstead started a new role as the director of advancement talent management at Dartmouth College. Prior to this position, she was the managing director for talent management, training and support at Colorado State University. She leads diversity and inclusion efforts, coordinates career and professional development initiatives, and delivers learning programs for 140 staff in the division of University Advancement. She has worked in higher education for 20 years, primarily in the field of student affairs where she taught leadership classes and coordinated programming for undergraduate students.
Her work around diversity and women's development has been recognized at the university and national levels. She is the founder of AKO Collective, a women's leadership development initiative based in Northern Colorado that offers training and development to women and girls.
Kander-Olmstead holds a bachelor's degree in organizational studies from the University of Michigan, a master's degree in college student personnel from Bowling Green State University, and a Certificate in Organization Development from Colorado State University. She is a certified StrengthsQuest Educator and Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) Practitioner.