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University of Iowa Foundation News Release

Dec. 23, 2005

Photos: left to right, Kennedy; Metcalf; Wombacher; Dierks; Minné; Sweeney; Collins

UI Foundation Announces New Staff, Promotions

The University of Iowa Foundation has added a new fund-raiser for the UI College of Education, along with new assistant directors of development for the College of Engineering and the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. The foundation also announced recent promotions and new assignments among current executive staff members.

New additions include:

--Jaye Kennedy, director of development for the College of Education and the Connie Belin and Jacqueline N. Blank International Center for Gifted Education and Talent Development. Kennedy, a graduate of Mount Mercy College, served as resource development director for the United Way of East Central Iowa from 1991 to 2000, securing grants and increasing contributions throughout her nine-year tenure there. Kennedy also started the development program for Tanager Place in Cedar Rapids and has spent the past year running her own fund-raising consulting business. In addition, she has been an active volunteer in the Cedar Rapids community, serving on a number of nonprofit boards.

--Kate Metcalf, assistant director of development for the College of Engineering. Since graduating from the UI with a bachelor's degree in journalism and communication studies in 2002, she has worked as a TV reporter, most recently at KWWL in Waterloo. In her new role, Metcalf will work with UI engineering alumni and corporate partners to develop charitable gifts that will advance the college's goals and objectives. She will work with engineering alumni in the eastern portion of the United States and pursue new development partnerships with alumni in the Asia Pacific region.

--Bridget Wombacher, assistant director of development for the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences (CLAS). Wombacher joins the CLAS development team after serving three years as a development officer at the Orchard Place Foundation in Des Moines, where she led fund-raising campaigns, wrote corporate and foundation grant proposals and coordinated special events. An Iowa City native, Wombacher received a bachelor's degree in communication studies with a minor in art history from the UI in 2001. Her development work for CLAS will focus primarily on departments in the natural and mathematical sciences.

Promotions and new assignments within UI Foundation executive staff include:

--David R. Dierks, to vice president, principal gifts, from assistant vice president, principal gifts. Dierks, who joined the foundation in 1973, takes over leadership of the Presidents Club from Olga Sassine, who will retire from the foundation on Dec. 31 after 35 years of service. The Presidents Club, which is administered by the foundation's donor relations and event services department, recognizes the university's most generous contributors and includes more than 5,700 members.

--Erin Minné, to associate vice president for medical center development, from assistant vice president for corporate and foundation relations. In her new position, Minné will cultivate philanthropic relationships with corporations and foundations for support of the UI Roy J. and Lucille A. Carver College of Medicine and UI Hospitals and Clinics. Along with others, she will also help coordinate the foundation's overall fund-raising efforts for the UI's medical center.

--Susan Sweeney, to assistant vice president for development research and records, and corporate and foundation relations. Adding corporate and foundation relations to her role, Sweeney will continue her leadership of the foundation's research and records area, maintain relationships with existing corporate and foundation contributors and cultivate new partnerships with such organizations, mainly in Iowa and the Midwest. She also will serve as the primary development officer for the UI's Pentacrest Museums (Old Capitol Museum and the Museum of Natural History).

--Chris Collins, to director of development for UI Roy J. and Lucille A. Carver College of Medicine and UI Hospitals and Clinics. Collins previously was an associate director in the foundation's gift planning department. In his new role, Collins will serve as primary contact for the orthopaedics and rehabilitation department, in addition to representing philanthropic priorities of the UI's medical center as a whole.

The UI acknowledges the UI Foundation as the preferred channel for private contributions that benefit all areas of the university. For more information about the UI Foundation, visit its web site at

STORY SOURCE: UI Foundation, P.O. Box 4550, Iowa City, Iowa 52244-4550

CONTACTS: Media: Mary Greiner, Director, Human Resources, 319-335-3305,; Writer: Jen Knights

PHOTOS/GRAPHICS: Photos for this story are available for downloading at: