State Councils Conference Explores Opportunities in Fundraising, Career Pathways, Collaboration

The 2017 CIC State Councils Annual Conference—designed to provide state executives, fundraising officers, and communications staff with opportunities to share best practices—took place in Seattle, Washington, April 30–May 2. The conference explored the ways that State Councils provide for member institutions’ needs for fundraising, career pathways, collaborative programming, and marketing.

In his keynote address on transformational ideas, Steve Moore, chief executive officer of the M.J. Murdock Charitable Trust, discussed the shared interests of foundations, private colleges, and State Councils in advancing their missions and communities.

Richard Ekman, president of CIC, and Frank Romeo, vice president of the UPS Foundation, led a workshop on grantsmanship, especially through CIC’s State Councils First Opportunity Partners Grant Program. James Plourde of the Collins Group led a panel with three current and former foundation officers: Mark Dederer of the Biller Family Foundation, Cat Martin of JPMorgan Chase & Company, and Ken Thompson of the Aspen Institute. Panelists addressed recent shifts in corporate strategy.

William Zumeta, professor of public policy and higher education at the University of Washington, presented recent CIC-sponsored research on how state grants in the form of scholarships for use at private colleges would raise degree attainment rates and save public tax dollars in 22 of 24 states that he and co-investigator Nick Huntington-Klein studied.

Regina Hartley, human resources vice president for the UPS Technology Division presented her positive experience hiring college graduates from diverse and first-generation backgrounds. Hartley, whose TED talk on hiring has been viewed more than 228,000 times, also discussed the UPS internship program she manages, which provides a career pathway to students in four states.

Jon McGee, vice president for planning and public affairs at the College of St. Benedict and Saint John’s University (MN), shared the challenges families are facing in selecting and paying for college, the changing marketplace in higher education, and the implications for institutions and their partners.

Two photos: (left) Regina Hartley presents while gesturing with her hands; (right) Richard Ekman and Ed Moore stand with Foreman Award recipient William Abare and spouse Susan who hold the framed award
(left photo) Regina Hartley, human resources vice president for the UPS Technology Division, spoke on the value of hiring diverse and first-generation students during her session at the 2017 State Councils Annual Conference.

(right photo) The Charles W. L. Foreman Award, the highest honor bestowed by the CIC State Councils, was presented to newly retired president of Flagler College (FL) William T. “Bill” Abare (third from left) during the State Councils Annual Awards Dinner. CIC President Richard Ekman (left) and Florida Independent College Fund Chief Executive Officer Ed Moore (right) presented the award. Abare was joined by his spouse, Susan.

Roundtable sessions led by State Council staff and executives shared best practices and examples of successful programs. Special events included recognition of the CIC/UPS Scholarship Recipient, Inaara Bhola, a student at Seattle University (WA), by UPS Foundation Vice President Frank Romeo. William T. “Bill” Abare, Jr., newly retired president of Flagler College (FL), received the annual Charles W. L. Foreman Award, the highest honor bestowed by the CIC State Councils. Abare, who was joined by his spouse, Susan, was recognized by Ed Moore, chief executive officer of the Florida Independent College Fund and president of the Independent Colleges and Universities of Florida, and Richard Ekman.

“I continue to find the State Councils Annual Conference extremely valuable for learning about trends that impact our work at the state level, and this year’s conference featured exception speakers,” said Jack Jones, president of the Iowa College Foundation. “I also enjoyed connecting with my fellow state executives, many of whom were new. There are tremendous programs going on in other states that I can learn from, and I appreciated the interest other executives took in my roundtable on Iowa’s Development Officer Training Program.”

The conference was made possible through generous financial support from the UPS Foundation and TIAA.