Paul Heaton to lead new CASE Center for Community College Advancement

The Council for Advancement and Support of Education March 31, 2011
The Council for Advancement and Support of Education has appointed Paul C. Heaton, director of public relations at Northwestern Michigan College in Traverse City, Mich., as director of the new CASE Center for Community College Advancement. The appointment is effective May 2.

Heaton joins CASE after five years at NMC where he has been responsible for public relations, marketing and communications. He also supported the college's fundraising efforts, which earned a CASE-WealthEngine award for overall performance in 2007.

Heaton will lead the development of a new CASE Center for Community College Advancement, which will provide training and resources to help community colleges build and sustain effective fundraising, alumni relations and communications and marketing programs. CASE will serve members through a mix of programs and products designed specifically for community colleges as well as resources developed for educational institutions of all types. The center is scheduled to launch in July.

CASE President John Lippincott said Heaton's community college experience and broad understanding of higher education made him stand out during the national search for the center's inaugural director.

"Community colleges today face unique enrollment and funding challenges, and CASE is deeply committed to helping them meet those challenges through strong fundraising, alumni relations, communications, and marketing programs," Lippincott said. "While community colleges serve nearly half of all undergraduates enrolled in higher education, they attract less than two percent of philanthropic support for colleges and universities. Our goal for the new center is to become a premier source of benchmarking data, best practices and training in all of the advancement areas in order to address the specialized needs of community colleges and their foundations.

"Paul brings to this important role an understanding of community college advancement, exceptional communication skills and a background developing initiatives that support the overall mission of educational institutions," he added.

In addition to his work at a community college, Heaton has held leadership positions in marketing, communications, public relations and student media at Eastern Michigan University and the Interlochen Center for the Arts in Michigan and at Ithaca College in New York. Prior to working in higher education, he was an editor and bureau chief for the St. Petersburg Times in Florida.
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