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From the President

Posted: Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Interim Leadership for Institutional Advancement

I am pleased to announce that I have appointed William J. Benfanti interim vice president for institutional advancement and interim executive director of the Buffalo State College Foundation effective March 1, 2018. Mr. Benfanti joined the Buffalo State family in October 2007 as associate vice president for government relations. In this role, he serves as the college’s legislative liaison to local, state, and federal government officials. Mr. Benfanti brought a wealth of experience in all levels of government within both the executive and legislative branches to Buffalo State that continues to serve the institution well to this day.

In 2012, Mr. Benfanti’s responsibilities were expanded to include alumni relations. As associate vice president for alumni and government relations, Mr. Benfanti remains responsible for campus advocacy and outreach to all levels of government. Additionally he oversees communication with our more than 116,000 current alumni around the globe. He works closely with the Buffalo State Alumni Association Board of Directors as well as the Buffalo State College Council Government Relations Committee. Under his leadership, alumni programs and events have increased both in number and in participants by over 300 percent. Mr. Benfanti has proved to be an effective advocate with all his constituents and has been successful with leading and assisting on many initiatives that have brought important resources and recognition to the college. Major projects include $93 million for the Science and Mathematics Complex and over $2 million for the Jacqueline Vito LoRusso Alumni and Visitor Center. Mr. Benfanti holds a master of arts in American intergovernmental relations from the University of Maryland, College Park.

I am also pleased to announce that I have appointed R. Scott Burns officer in charge of development activities, also effective March 1. Mr. Burns came to Buffalo State in April 2014 as a major gift officer. Since that time, he has served as director of major gifts and interim associate vice president for development. He was promoted to associate vice president for development in February 2017. In this role, Mr. Burns is responsible for fundraising (major gifts, annual giving, and Faculty and Staff Appeal), advancement services, and donor stewardship functions. Before joining the Buffalo State staff, Mr. Burns served as the vice president of institutional advancement at St. Joseph’s Collegiate Institute. He received his bachelor of arts in economics from Union College in Schenectady, New York.

Both Mr. Benfanti and Mr. Burns will serve in their respective roles until a new vice president for institutional advancement is on board, which I am anticipating will be mid-August. I appreciate their willingness to step up and take on these important roles at the college, and I invite you to join me in thanking them for their service, past and future, to Buffalo State.

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