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Article - Lucas Dart named to lead UNK alumni relations and fundraising

Lucas Dart named to lead UNK alumni relations and fundraising

Lucas Dart named to lead UNK alumni relations and fundraising

Pete Kotsiopulos to continue fundraising for UNK

Posted: jue, feb 13, 2014

KEARNEY — Feb. 12, 2014 — The University of Nebraska Foundation announced Lucas Dart will become vice president of alumni relations and development for the University of Nebraska at Kearney on March 1. He will lead all UNK alumni association and campus fundraising efforts.

Dart succeeds Pete Kotsiopulos, the current vice president, as part of a planned transition. Kotsiopulos will continue fundraising for UNK, including for the College of Business and Technology, his alma mater, as well as for other campus initiatives.

According to Brian Hastings, president and CEO of the University of Nebraska Foundation, the leadership announcement represents a succession plan designed to continue the integration between the alumni association and the foundation's Kearney office, a partnership which has worked well.

"Chancellor Doug Kristensen, Pete Kotsiopulos and Lucas Dart have formed a great partnership," Hastings said. "With the support of our dedicated UNK team, and the wonderful service of countless alumni association and campaign volunteers, alumni engagement and private fundraising at UNK have reached new heights, as evidenced by UNK eclipsing the $50 million goal as part of the Campaign for Nebraska.  I'm tremendously grateful for Pete's leadership these past three years and see a very bright future for our alumni and fundraising programs under the direction of Lucas."

A UNK alumnus, Dart joined the University of Nebraska Foundation in 2002 as director of development and was then appointed executive director of the UNK Alumni Association in 2008. In 2010, the UNK Alumni Association and University of Nebraska Foundation formed an integration agreement, and Dart was appointed UNK campaign director at the foundation and associate director of the alumni association.

Kotsiopulos joined the University of Nebraska Foundation and UNK Alumni Association in 2010 in a dual role as vice president for UNK development and executive director of the UNK Alumni Association. He had previously served as vice president for university affairs at the University of Nebraska, where he worked closely with higher education partners, civic and community leaders, government officials and business and industry to develop partnerships to improve job creation and economic development. He served as mayor of Kearney from 1994 to 2003, served on the Kearney City Council and owned and operated a Kearney-based regional business for 36 years.

"When I was approached for the UNK position, we had a four-year plan that included integrating the foundation and alumni operations, while mentoring a successor," Kotsiopulos said. "Our recent staff additions now give me an opportunity to work with the College of Business and Technology. Three years into this, the timing is good. Lucas Dart and our team are well-positioned."

The University of Nebraska Foundation is an independent, nonprofit organization raising private gifts to support the University of Nebraska for more than 77 years. In 2013, donors provided the university with $236.7 million for scholarships, medical and other research, academic programs, faculty support and facilities. The foundation's comprehensive fundraising campaign, the Campaign for Nebraska, concludes Dec. 31, 2014. For more information, visit campaignfornebraska.org.

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