President Huddleston confident in new VP for Advancement
Published: Tuesday, September 11, 2012
Updated: Wednesday, February 13, 2013 15:02
According to UNH President Mark Huddleston, the university just finished its best fundraising year in a decade. A UNH Campus Journal release announced that the total amount raised in fiscal year 2012 (July 1 - June 30) was $22.5 million. This is a 77 percent increase in gifts and pledges from last year, $2.5 million more than the university’s goal and second only to the final year of the last capital campaign in 2002.
However, the leader of this fundraising year, former Vice President for Advancement, Peter Weiler, resigned in June to accept a position at the University of Maryland. Weiler was employed at UNH for two years on a non-contractual basis.
Fortunately, UNH administration was able to quickly secure a qualified replacement for Weiler’s position. Deborah Dutton, who most recently served as vice president for development and alumni relations at Colby College in Maine, is the new vice president for advancement, as well as president of the UNH Foundation.
Weiler had extensive fundraising experience. Prior to his time at UNH, he held similar positions at the University of California, Los Angeles, the University of Vermont, Pennsylvania State, and Ohio State. President Huddleston maintains that Weiler’s departure was not linked to any salary concerns.
“Peter Weiler left UNH for a new professional opportunity,” Huddleston said. “In order to attract high-level and high-performing fundraisers, you have to offer a competitive salary, and that’s what we did. Deborah Dutton will earn the same salary.”
There was still some concern over losing Weiler as, according to the Nashua Telegraph, “New Hampshire has the highest tuition in the nation for in-state students, the lowest amount of government funding for higher education, and its graduates have the highest debt load.”
However, President Huddleston said he is certain that Dutton will perform just as well as Weiler did, and that students will not see any negative changes in UNH’s finances or tuition due to the administrative switch between the two professionals.
“I hired Deborah because she brings the experience we need as we continue to build our efforts in fundraising and alumni engagement, and I am confident with her leadership we will again celebrate another successful fundraising year,” Huddleston said. “We were thrilled she could join us so quickly.”
According to a Campus Journal release, Dutton was a tenured employee at Colby for six years and served as the campaign director prior to her promotion to vice president. As director, she led the school’s largest campaign, earning the college over $376 million, and also transformed fundraising efforts as vice president. In addition, Dutton has held development positions at the Maine chapter of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, at three Harvard teaching hospitals and at Bates College in Maine.
Dutton said she is already very engrossed in her new position.
“I am taking some time to learn about the current structure of the division,” she said. “I’m meeting with every member of the division to learn from each of them what is working now and what we can do, as a team, to be even more successful and effective.”
Dutton’s position is multifaceted and demanding, and requires much attention to be paid toward constituencies who might be interested in donating to UNH.
“The vice president works with the advancement team to create opportunities to engage alumni, parents, students and friends in the life of the institution. By sharing our accomplishments in a variety of ways, we advance the reputation of the university,” Dutton said. “When all of the departments within advancement work together, we inspire people to make philanthropic gifts, which in turn makes UNH even stronger than it is today.”