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Top Fund-Raiser to Depart Pittsburgh for Florida Carol Carter’s efforts at Duquesne garnered great support

Contact: Bridget Fare, 412.370.9692

Duquesne University President Dr. Charles Dougherty today announced that Carol Carter, vice president for university advancement, will depart Pittsburgh after nearly 25 years in fund raising here to reside in Florida. For the past two and a half years, Carter oversaw all aspects of fund raising, including launching the quiet phase of a new capital campaign, alumni relations, university events and public affairs at Duquesne. Her last day at Duquesne is July 7. Gerard LaVan, an alumnus of Duquesne and current associate vice president for advancement, will serve as interim vice president.

“Carol has strategically positioned the university for even greater fund raising success by implementing a new approach, securing key commitments from individuals, corporations and foundations, and building operational infrastructure that will ensure success into the future,” said Dougherty. “She has done an outstanding job for Duquesne.”

Carter took the reins of the Division of University Advancement in 2004, charged with enhancing fund-raising strategy and implementing a new capital campaign. Under her leadership Duquesne experienced great support, including:

  • A strong start of the quiet phase of the new capital campaign, with nearly 90 campus and community volunteers
  • Leadership support of the board of directors
  • Approximately 20,000 alumni and friends have already participated in the campaign; 25 percent of donors to the capital campaign are brand new donors to the university
  • $20 million in commitments supporting the endowment (professorships, chairs, scholarships, etc.)
  • The most successful faculty and staff campaign to date in terms of dollars raised: $1.3 million and still counting
  • $11 million in foundations and corporate support
  • $13 million for programmatic support
  • Over a three-year period, $10 million in annual fund gifts have been raised
  • $9 million in proposals for brick and mortar projects
  • Restructuring the advancement team to better focus on key areas and prospects

"Carol's expertise and leadership have provided Duquesne with not only critical gifts and support in the early phase of the capital campaign, but also a long-term strategy to advance the institution's fund-raising efforts," says John J. Connelly, Duquesne University Board chair. "The board of directors wishes her success in her new endeavors."

Carter’s career in non-profit advancement began more than 30 years ago in Maryland, but she is well known in the Pittsburgh area for her work in fund raising at Duquesne University, the University of Pittsburgh, Carnegie Mellon University and the Pittsburgh Foundation. For the last two years, LaVan has worked with her to enhance Duquesne’s advancement strategy and infrastructure.

LaVan will continue building on the campaign’s momentum by focusing on securing lead commitments for the Forbes Avenue multipurpose recreation center, the A.J. Palumbo Center’s renovations and other athletic projects associated with Rooney Field; soliciting other commitments from major prospects, individuals, corporations and foundations; and engaging additional volunteers in the campaign effort.

LaVan’s fund-raising experience spans nearly 15 years, and includes leadership positions at Carnegie Mellon University, the University of Pittsburgh, where he was associate vice chancellor and national campaign manager, and Duquesne University. Prior to his work in philanthropy, LaVan served in marketing research positions for Holt, Rinehart & Winston; CBS Records, Inc.; New American Library (Signet) Paperback Publishing Company; Behavioral Analysis, Inc.; and CBS News. He received both a bachelor’s and master’s degree in political science from Duquesne University.

Duquesne University

Founded in 1878, Duquesne is consistently ranked among the nation's top Catholic universities for its award-winning faculty and tradition of academic excellence. Duquesne, a campus of nearly 9,500 graduate and undergraduate students, has been nationally recognized for its academic programs, community service and commitment to sustainability. Follow Duquesne University on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.