City University Retains
New Fundraising Consultant
|Vice Chairman of the CUNY Board of Trustees,
Benno C. Schmidt Jr. will spearhead fundraising efforts.
The City University has retained the
Community Counselling Service Company (CCS), a professional
fundraising/public relations firm based in Manhattan, to assist
in undertaking a Development Assessment on every college campus.
Chancellor Goldstein announced the move in a March 27 letter
to all college presidents, observing that "competing demands
on the University's limited resources make it imperative for
us to secure external monies."
During early spring, colleges will complete surveys prepared
by CCS, and its staff will then conduct interviews with campus
leaders and chief advancement officers. The goal will be to
evaluate the level of individual campus development programs
and explore opportunities for increased fundraising efficiency,
innovation, and growth.
The Chancellor reiterated the high priority of fundraising
in his administration when he raised the subject at the January
meeting of the Board of Trustees. While expressing his delight
at getting "weekly calls from our presidents about major gifts,"
he acknowledged that the concerted focus on raising funds
from alumni and extramural sources "is a relatively new phenomenon"
The Chancellor urged the Board to create a Standing Committee
for Development that "would ultimately lead to a campaign
for CUNY." He did not have to look far for the ideal chair
of such a committee. Motioning to the meeting's presider,
Vice Chairman of the Board Benno C. Schmidt Jr., Goldstein
recalled Schmidt's "extraordinary record" as "probably the
best fund-raiser in Yale's history" during his presidential
tenure there, and then added, "I can't think of anybody better
to lead that effort than you."
Enthusiastically accepting the challenge, Schmidt acknowledged
that, from his first days on the Board, he had thought it
a "great lost opportunity at this University in the area of
attracting private gifts and eleemosynary contributions. .
. .In my previous experience, the responsibility of university
trustees has included a stewardship of the development effort,"
Schmidt stated, "and I think there is every reason to believe
that CUNY would benefit from moving very strongly in this
Promising to move a planning effort "into high gear this spring"
aimed at creating an "oversight and support mechanism" on
the Board for University-wide fundraising, Schmidt voiced
his conviction that there is "no reason why CUNY should not
be the most successful public university in the U.S. at drawing