Ralph Amos is a recognized alumni relations executive with 26 years of experience in institutional advancement and alumni engagement. Before becoming president and CEO of Purdue Alumni, Amos seved as vice president of alumni relations for the University System of Maryland Foundation, responsible for implementing system-wide initiatives throughout Maryland's 12 degree-granting universities and, collectively, its nearly one million alumni.
Prior to his role at Maryland, he served as assistant vice chancellor of the Division of External Affairs at the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) and chief executive officer of the UCLA Alumni Association; assistant vice president of alumni relations at Ohio University; and assistant vice president of membership marketing and constituent societies at The Ohio State University.
Amos received a bachelor's degree in international studies from The Ohio State University and a master's degree in public administration from Ohio University.
Rick Davis, vice president for alumni relations and annual giving, joined Northeastern University in May, 2015. He serves as lead strategist who has reimagined alumni relations with an integrated advancement objective to cement robust global network nodes of connectivity positioned throughout key strategic areas around the world. Since 2015, close to 20 global communities have been either refurbished or recreated to match Northeastern's growing global footprint. A diverse offering of online engagement activities and tools has also been constructed that account for more than 50 percent of the active engagement from the more than 250,000 alumni network. A newly created career strategist service curriculum along with curated faculty outreach from all nine colleges have also been imported into Northeastern's alumni relations toolkit of services and experiences.
He comes to Northeastern from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he was the director of enrichment programs for the university's General Alumni Association for more than two decades.
Davis has been an active facilitator and presenter for CASE, CASE América Latina as well as CCAE. He received CASE's Crystal Apple for teaching excellence in 2015.
Prior to the University of North Carolina, Davis worked at Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Carolina, where he held multiple positions and managed several teams. He received the President's Service Award and Outstanding Employee Award. He has also held various marketing support positions at IBM. He received his bachelor's degree in business from the University of North Carolina and his master's degree from Duke University.
Cheryl Harrelson, associate vice chancellor alumni, annual giving & pipeline development joined University of California San Diego in 2017. With 25 years of experience in multiple areas of advancement, she oversees alumni relations, career services, annual giving (academic and health), campus initiatives, and international engagement. UC San Diego is a young institution at 58 years old, non-traditional in its practices but has nearly 200,000 alumni. With Harrelson's leadership, her team is beginning to build traditions to better engage alumni across the world and developing strategies for greater participation leading to a stronger pipeline. A strategic focus area is engaging alumni connecting with students through the Career Center. The Career Center practices are being reinvigorated working with alumni to better prepare students on critical real-world practices.
Prior to UC San Diego, Harrelson served as the vice president of advancement and President of the foundation at New Mexico State University, associate vice president for Annual Giving, Stewardship and Special Events at Washington State University, associate vice president for advancement information services at James Madison University and served in a number of positions at North Carolina Agricultural and Technical (A&T) State University.
Harrelson received her bachelor's degree in mathematics/applied science from the University of California, Los Angeles, a master's degree in higher education from the University of North Carolina Greensboro and a master's degree in computer information systems from the University of Phoenix.
Donna Thornton joined Rutgers University in 2006, was named vice president for alumni relations in December 2007 and in 2015 added the departments of annual giving and communications to her responsibilities. With Thornton's leadership, the university launched the newly formed Rutgers University Alumni Association (RUAA) in 2008, its first all-inclusive alumni association. She was instrumental in reorganizing both the staff and volunteer structure to support the university's new non-dues based association.
In her capacity at Rutgers, Thornton has university-wide responsibility for engaging Rutgers alumni with the university and facilitating their support via a robust annual giving program. She is a member of the President's Administrative Council and the Rutgers University Foundation's leadership team, and is often consulted for her strategic and change management skills. She has served as a member and officer of the Board of the Council for Alumni Association Executives (CAAE), former president of the Big East Conference Alumni Professionals Organization, and a member of the CASE Commission on Alumni Relations.
Prior to joining Rutgers, Thornton served as the COO and interim president and CEO of the University of Maine Alumni Association where she also directed the annual giving and membership dues programs. She was elected to the city council in Brewer, Maine, and served the community as its mayor. In 2019, she was honored by her alma mater with the Pine Tree Emblem Service Award for service to the University of Maine Alumni Association.