Lori A. Lewis, an advancement executive with nearly 20 years of experience in development and alumni affairs in higher education, joined Western Carolina University in June to lead its fundraising efforts. Lewis, formerly vice president for institutional advancement at McDaniel College in Westminster, Maryland, is WCU’s vice chancellor for development and alumni engagement. She fills a vacancy created by the departure of Jim Miller, who is now executive director of development for regional and major gifts programs in the Office of University Development at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Lewis is an accomplished and seasoned advancement professional with extensive experience leading fundraising campaigns at a variety of higher education institutions, from large universities to small liberal arts colleges, Chancellor David O. Belcher said in announcing her appointment.
“Lori Lewis possesses exactly the skill set, the experience and the vision the university needs to take our development efforts to the next level,” Belcher said. “Lori will build upon the solid foundation already in place as we gear up for our upcoming comprehensive fundraising campaign and as we endeavor to increase the number of endowed scholarships to provide financial assistance to
Lewis’ primary responsibilities will be to design and implement strategies for development and alumni engagement initiatives at the university and college levels; build and lead the staffs and volunteers needed to support university fundraising activities; and support the chancellor and other key internal and volunteer leaders in their work with top donors and donor prospects. She will work closely with leadership in the Catamount athletics offices on fundraising efforts in support of the intercollegiate sports program.
“I see my role as vice chancellor for development and alumni engagement as twofold: advise campus leadership on all aspects of development and alumni affairs, and effectively promote internal and external support of the university’s mission as correlated with giving and engagement goals,” she said.