Erwin M. Sekulow, a two-time graduate of the university and a senior member of the Hopkins development team for 23 years, has been named the university's executive director of alumni relations, effective Oct. 5.
He succeeds Jerome D. Schnydman, a 1967 graduate, who is now secretary of the board of trustees and executive assistant to President William R. Brody. India Lowres, a 1976 graduate and associate director of alumni relations, has served as interim executive director.
"After a long national search, we are delighted to name Erv Sekulow to this new role," said Robert R. Lindgren, vice president for development and alumni relations. "He will build on the many accomplishments of the alumni office under Jerry Schnydman's able leadership and will continue to be a great asset both to the university and to Hopkins' 94,000 alumni."
Lindgren noted that Sekulow served on the pivotal Alumni Relations Task Force in the 1980s that examined the role of the alumni association and made recommendations to expand the involvement of alumni in university affairs.
Sekulow earned his bachelor's degree in 1959 from the School of Arts and Sciences and his master of liberal arts degree in 1976 from the School of Continuing Studies. He joined the Hopkins development staff in 1971 as director of development for The Johns Hopkins Hospital and in 1980 became director of development on the central development staff of the university.
In 1981 he began a four-year stint as vice president of development at Brandeis University, returning to Hopkins to work on the Campaign for Johns Hopkins and later becoming executive director for regional and institutional programs. In 1995 he assumed his current duties as executive director for institutional programs, supervising corporate and foundation relations and planned giving.
Sekulow is the only member of the senior development and alumni relations staff who has participated in each of Hopkins' three most recent institutional fund-raising campaigns, covering three decades.
As head of the Alumni Relations Office, Sekulow will manage a staff of 11 focusing on activities and services for alumni, faculty, parents and friends of the eight academic divisions and other programs of the university.
Johns Hopkins has approximately 94,000 living alumni. Currently, 31 percent live in Baltimore; 18 percent, in the Washington area; 7 percent, in metropolitan New York; another 7 percent, elsewhere in the mid-Atlantic region; 7 percent, in the western U.S.; and 8 percent, outside the U.S.
Last year the alumni relations staff mailed more than 400,000 invitations for 125 events throughout the United States and abroad. There are 37 regional alumni chapters in 24 states and the District of Columbia, as well as in Japan, Paris, South Korea, Thailand and Taiwan. Activities cover a wide range, including dinners with administration or faculty speakers, private museum tours, student send-off receptions, baseball games, crab feasts and young alumni gatherings.
The staff also coordinates the 150-member Alumni Council, the governing body of the Alumni Association, which represents all of the academic divisions. The Council, aided by the staff, manages the alumni dues program, the awards program for alumni, the Excellence in Teaching awards for faculty, the Community Service Grant Program for students, the Student Services Program, a newsletter for regional alumni chapter leadership, and the Alumni Career Network database.
"I believe I can speak for the whole Alumni Council in saying that we are extremely pleased with the selection of Erv Sekulow to head alumni relations at Johns Hopkins," said James K. Archibald, a 1971 graduate of the School of Arts and Sciences, who in October will begin a two-year term as the council's president. "Over the years," said Archibald, "he has shown himself an effective leader and a true friend of Hopkins and of its alumni."
In addition, the Alumni Relations Office provides an international travel and alumni college program, coordinates the Alumni Host Family Program and the Society of Black Alumni, and maintains the Hopkins alumni pages on the Web.
Last year, approximately 14,500 alumni were dues-paying members of the Alumni Association. As of Aug. 31, 31 percent of the total committed to the Johns Hopkins Initiative, the institutions' current fund-raising campaign, had come from alumni.