Director of Web Communications, UC Davis
Bio: Adam Napolitan specializes in digital strategy for large and complex environments. He works in the central communications office for UC Davis doing strategic communications. Adam develops digital strategy and provides consultation to communicators and IT staff throughout the university, and he and his team manage top-level digital assets. Adam is also an experienced public speaker and has developed many keynote presentations for public figures and those in executive leadership. With a background in technology, marketing, and communications, he has become a go-to resource for many disciplines within digital strategy and public speaking.
Senior Director of Development, East Coast Region, University of California, Riverside
Bio: Alli Lambert is the senior director of regional development for UC Riverside. She joined UCR in 2014, and prior to that she spent 10 years at Bates College in Lewiston, Maine, holding a variety of advancement positions. Currently, Alli’s development focus is the East Coast as well as overseeing a team of regionally based development officers. Alli and her team work diligently to increase institutional support from alumni, parents, and friends within California and across the United States. She holds a bachelor’s in psychology from Rhodes College in Memphis, Tennessee, and a master’s from Endicott College in Beverly, Massachusetts.
Associate Vice President, Principal Gifts and Development, San Diego State University
Bio: Amy Harmon is the associate vice president of principal gifts and development at SDSU. A graduate of Berea College in Kentucky, she has more than 16 years of experience in building relationships, sharing organizational stories, presenting opportunities for funding, and asking for other involvement. She has been at SDSU for more than five years and has served in a variety of roles, including building the well-established regional program that maintains strong campus partnerships with enrollment services, career services, parent programs, athletics, marketing and communications, and alumni engagement.
Founder,CEO, Reeher LLC
Bio: Andy Reeher helps leading universities improve the efficiency and effectiveness of their fundraising efforts. Before consulting within the higher-education community, Andy served in a variety of management roles at Deluxe Corporation, where he spearheaded brand management, product management, distribution strategy, direct marketing, internal and external communications, public relations, strategic organizational development, and consumer technology delivery efforts. He left Deluxe in 2001 to join the consulting firm Core Group, where he was introduced to the fundraising practices of and donor behavior for the nation’s universities. Andy is a frequent presenter on higher-education fundraising topics and has contributed to Currents magazine.
Senior Director, Bruin Connections, UCLA Alumni Association
Bio: Angela Scales is the senior director of Bruin Connections. She leads a team of professionals, students (with the Student Alumni Association), and alumni in the planning and execution of large-scale campus traditions, alumni career programs, and academic and experiential initiatives. She oversees a team of 16 people that organizes a myriad of programs at UCLA. As a member of the senior staff, she also participates in strategic planning and leadership development across the organization. Angela started at UCLA Alumni Affairs in 2005 and previously worked with both the student relations and alumni scholarships teams. Before joining the staff at UCLA, she worked for Laufer Green Isaac, a strategic marketing and communications firm. A graduate of UCLA, Angela holds a bachelor’s degree in communication studies.
Angelique Grant, Ph.D.
Senior Consultant, Aspen Leadership Group and African American Development Officer Network Advisory Board Member
Bio: Angelique Grant is a senior consultant with the Aspen Leadership Group. She has worked in university advancement for more than 25 years, most recently serving as the assistant vice president for development at Florida International University, where she oversaw fundraising for eight colleges and museums. Prior to this, she served as an assistant vice president at FIU’s medical school. Angelique has also held fundraising positions at the University of Miami, Princeton University, and Washington State University, raising more than $100 million in her career. She is a Fulbright Scholar, holding a doctorate in higher education administration, a master’s in communication from Washington State University, and a bachelor’s in journalism from Florida A&M University.
CEO of the UCI Alumni Association and Assistant Vice Chancellor of Alumni Relations, University of California, Irvine
Bio: Barney Ellis-Perry joined the UCI Alumni Association in the fall of 2014 with a mandate to work collaboratively with campus leaders and alumni volunteers to ideate a new vision to support the ambitions of UCI. Prior to UCI, he worked in alumni relations and before that in development at the University of British Columbia, Canada’s second-largest and preeminent university. While at UBC, Barney was co-lead on www.startanevolution.ca, Canada’s largest and the world’s first dual-goal campaign for a university. The goal of doubling alumni engagement was met a year early, and the campaign met its goal of raising $1.5 billion on schedule in 2015.
Associate Director, Media Relations, Arizona State University
Bio: Beth Giudicessi joined ASU’s office of media relations and strategic communications in 2015; she currently serves as director. Working in higher education and in the technology sector, Beth has held editorial roles and has experience in marketing and public relations. Previously, she has worked with Harvard University, TripAdvisor.com, and the venture capital firm General Catalyst Partners. She is a graduate of the University of Notre Dame, the University of Edinburgh, and the Columbia Publishing Course at Columbia Journalism School.
Associate Executive Director, University of California, Riverside
Bio: Bill Cole has worked in alumni relations for more than 14 years at UC Riverside, which is one of the most diverse campuses in the nation. During that time the alumni population at UCR has doubled, creating unique challenges in engaging young alumni in an ever-changing social media age. Bill oversees the alumni programmatic and engagement activities at UCR, which include advocacy, regional engagement, parent engagement, philanthropy, young alumni engagement, the Student Alumni Association, and alumni career programs.
CEO and Senior VP, Sharp HealthCare Foundation
Bio: Bill Littlejohn is one of the nation’s leading healthcare philanthropy professionals. Bill joined Sharp HealthCare in 2002 as senior vice president and chief executive officer of Sharp HealthCare Foundation. He oversees Sharp’s entire philanthropic program, which has generated more than $250 million in revenues during his tenure. Bill is a 1980 graduate of the University of Virginia with a bachelor of arts degree in economics. He is past-chair of the Association of Healthcare Philanthropy; is past-chair of the board of Santa Fe Christian Schools; and serves on the boards of St. Paul’s Senior Services and CYT, a nationwide children’s theater program.
Dean and Ted and Doris Lee Professor of Business, Lee Business School, University of Nevada, Las Vegas
Bio: Brent Hathaway is dean and the Ted and Doris Lee Professor of Business in the Lee Business School. He joined UNLV from the University of Wyoming College of Business, where he served as dean for nine years and previously served as interim dean and chair of the management and marketing department. In addition to academic leadership, Brent has extensive experience in the business sector. He served in several executive positions, including as vice president of marketing and sales for aerospace services at Honeywell International, director of marketing for agricultural equipment at Case Corporation, and president and general manager for Concord Inc.
Assistant Dean for Advancement, Eberhardt School of Business, University of the Pacific
Bio: Briana Ezzell has served as a fundraising professional for almost eight years in both nonprofit organizations and higher-education institutions. Her education in organizational behavior and sociology has largely influenced her intimate understanding of the donor. Utilizing this expertise, she has consistently exceeded her fundraising goals and raised a record amount for her unit.
Director, Institutional Relations (System), CETYS University
Bio: Carlos H. Garcia is a member of the President’s Senior Staff at Centro de Enseñanza Técnica y Superior (CETYS University), an internationally accredited university system located in Mexico. He has been involved in fundraising, communications, and alumni relations for more than 20 years, having served as local director of development, system director for advancement, and campus dean. He is currently the director of institutional relations and secretary to the board of trustees. Carlos is an ACE Fellow, the second Mexican to be chosen for the prestigious program in 50 years; a senior volunteer to CASE Latin America; an alumnus of The Fundraising School; and a previously active member of Association of Fundraising Professionals, serving on the International Strategy Task Force. He holds a master’s degree from CETYS University and is a doctoral candidate at City University of Seattle.
Director of News & Information, California State University, Northridge
Bio: Carmen Chandler has worked at CSUN in a media relations capacity for more than 20 years and now serves as the director of media relations for CSUN. Previously, she worked as a newspaper reporter for nearly 17 years. Carmen got her first job as a reporter while still in high school. The last paper she worked for was the Los Angeles Daily News, for which she covered Los Angeles’s minority communities while also reporting on higher education and serving as a general assignment reporter. Among the stories she covered were the 1992 Los Angeles riots and the 1994 Northridge earthquake.
Associate Vice President for Development, California State University, Fresno
Bio: Caty Perez serves as associate vice president of development at Fresno State. She spent her first 12 years at Fresno State working for the Craig School of Business and subsequent years in the Lyles College of Engineering, the College of Science and Mathematics, and the College of Social Sciences. She works on major gifts, planned gifts, and volunteer leadership. Caty has a bachelor’s in applied mathematics with a minor in business leadership from Fresno Pacific University and a master’s in education leadership from California State University, Fresno.
Senior Director of Development, Health Sciences, The University of Arizona
Bio: In May 2015, Cheryl House joined the University of Arizona as senior director of development for UA Health Sciences. She served as assistant vice chancellor and executive director for the Pima Community College Foundation from 2003 to 2015 and was responsible for the administration of the foundation, including fundraising, financial management, and strategic planning. She was a member of the college’s leadership team. Cheryl also served as director of development for the University of Arizona College of Pharmacy. In 2001 the Association of Fundraising Professionals named her Southern Arizona’s Outstanding Fundraising Executive. Cheryl holds a degree in journalism from Bowling Green State University.
Director of Alumni Relations, UC Merced
Bio: Chris Abrescy serves as director of Alumni Relations for UC Merced, the first American research university built in the 21st century, opening in 2005. Chris has helped build a program within student and alumni relations that has received national recognition, including two CASE Circle of Excellence Awards, and has risen to no. 47 in alumni giving and no. 3 in the UC system. Working with a diverse student population, many of which are first-generation college students, Chris continues to build new student and alumni traditions that foster a culture of philanthropy on campus.
Director of Scientific Communications and Media Relations, Salk Institute for Biological Studies
Bio: Chris Emery is the director of scientific communications and media relations at the Salk Institute in La Jolla, California. He has spent his career communicating science, from reporting on medical and science news at the Baltimore Sun to serving as a science writer and officer of communications and marketing for Princeton University and the Salk Institute.
Executive Director of Prospect Development and Talent Management, Caltech
Bio: Christy Cates is currently the executive director of talent and prospect management for Development and Institute Relations at Caltech. She plays a central role in furthering the organization’s vision of building a world-class advancement organization by establishing and refining comprehensive programs that integrate into all facets of the organization. Her areas of focus include talent acquisition and on-boarding, professional development, staff engagement and retention, prospect research, prospect management, and performance management. Prior to joining Caltech, Christy served as the senior executive director of University Advancement Human Resources at the University of California, Irvine. Before entering the world of higher-education advancement, she held human resource positions with In-N-Out Burger and Pick Up Stix Inc., both privately held, multisite corporations that employ between 800 and 4,000 employees. She earned a degree in political science from San Diego State University and is a member of the Society for Human Resource Management and CASE.
Vice President and Director, Western Region, Campbell & Company
Bio: With nearly 35 years of experience in the nonprofit sector, Craig Hightower heads Campbell & Company’s Western Regional Office. His energy, talent, and entrepreneurial instincts are evident in all of his client work, and his focus on helping clients achieve measurable success drives each project from start to finish. Prior to joining Campbell & Company, Craig served as regional vice president of development for Boys & Girls Clubs of America. In 1992 he joined Children’s Hospital of Orange County to revive a stalled capital campaign to build a new hospital. He later served as chief development officer, overseeing the hospital’s comprehensive development program.
Executive Director of Principal Gifts, UC Davis
Bio: Dan Isidor has been working in major gifts for more than 16 years. After starting his career in development at a small liberal arts college in New Jersey, he moved to Pennsylvania State University and spent the next 11 years with the Smeal College of Business and the College of Arts and Architecture. Following his move to UC Davis in 2012 to lead the development effort for the College of Biological Sciences, he has recently moved into the position of executive director of principal gifts, in which he oversees a shift toward a more strategic focus at the top of the pyramid.
Office assistant, University of San Francisco
Bio: Danny Steyer works as a graduate student intern for the Alumni Mentor Program in the Office of Alumni Engagement at USF, where he is currently pursuing his master’s degree in higher education and student affairs. Danny is an alumnus of Whitman College and currently lives in the Bay Area.
Danielle Harvey Stinson
Assistant Vice President for Alumni Relations, University of Southern California
Bio: Danielle Harvey Stinson is the assistant vice president for alumni relations at USC, a private research institution located in the heart of Los Angeles. She leads a diverse team responsible for engaging alumni through programs such as the USC Women’s Conference and the LGBT Alumni Association, as well as through reunions, regional clubs and chapters, industry networks, and generational groups. With more than 12 years of experience in alumni relations, Danielle has a proven track record for success in program development and organizational leadership. Her passion for teaching has aided her ability to recruit, coach, and mentor countless professionals.
Assistant Vice President, Legacy Planning, Chapman University
Bio: David Moore serves as assistant vice president of legacy planning at Chapman University, working with alumni and friends of the university to establish a meaningful legacy. This is often done using gift-planning tools such as bequests, gift annuities, charitable trusts, and life insurance. David meets with people, learns what is important to them, and then helps them advance their values and priorities. He has more than 22 years of experience working in advancement for higher education, having worked in alumni and parent relations, annual giving, major gifts, and gift planning.
Associate Vice President & COO For Resource Development, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Bio: David Woodruff is associate vice president and COO for resource development at MIT, and he has served in this capacity since June 2012. He oversees operations of a development office that raises more than $500 million per year. MIT recently launched the public phase of its $5 billion Campaign for a Better World. David has also held fundraising leadership positions at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health and Massachusetts General Hospital, and he has worked on three successful multibillion-dollar campaigns. David holds degrees from MIT, Stanford University, and Babson College. He is also a certified fundraising executive.
Assistant Director, Partnership UCLA/Bruin Connections, UCLA
Bio: As assistant director of social sciences and humanities academic engagement, Deborah Lin creates and manages programming that engages alumni to support undergraduate and graduate professional development. Deborah is passionate about finding new methods and avenues to help students connect theory to practice and acquire industry-specific skills. She holds a bachelor’s degree in general biology with a minor in communication from the University of California, San Diego.
Dee Dee Mendoza
Managing Director, West Coast Advancement, Dartmouth College
Bio: Dee Dee Mendoza is the managing director of West Coast Advancement for Dartmouth College, where she works largely with alumni in startups, venture capital, and adjacent industries. Prior to this, she was founding senior director of innovator engagement at UC Berkeley, where she led the team that built the Berkeley Founders’ Pledge and related projects. A believer in the power of university entrepreneurial ecosystems, Dee Dee feels that all institutions can build philanthropic value with savvy, targeted, and cost-effective efforts.
Vice President for Advancement, Notre Dame de Namur University
Bio: Dino Hernandez’s 27 years of experience range from recruitment and fundraising for nonprofit association membership to higher-education advancement. He has worked for Oakland University, the University of Michigan–Flint, Lawrence Technological University, and Sierra Nevada College, and he currently works for Notre Dame de Namur University. A frequent presenter in the profession for both CASE and the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP), Dino has presented locally, nationally, and internationally. He served as the cochair of the philanthropy track for CASE District VII (2014–2015) and has served on the CASE Commission on Philanthropy (2011–2014) and the AFP Greater Detroit Chapter as its former president-elect (2013).
Leader, Higher Education Practice, Marts & Lundy, Inc.
Bio: Don joined Marts & Lundy in 2000, bringing with him 20-plus years of fundraising experience. He served the firm as president and CEO from 2006 to 2016. Prior to joining Marts & Lundy, Don was director of development at the University of San Diego and, from 1985 to 1990, associate director of development at the Stanford Graduate School of Business. He has served on the board of CASE District VII and in the San Diego Chapter of the Association of Fundraising Professionals. He currently serves on CASE’s Industry Advisory Board and is a former director of the Giving Institute and its Giving USA Foundation.
Assistant Director, Recent Alumni Engagement, University of San Francisco
Bio: Dylan Houle serves USF as the assistant director for recent graduate engagement. He is a proud alumnus of both Fordham University and San Francisco State University and is currently pursuing a Career Advising Certificate from the University of California, San Diego. Dylan lives in San Francisco.