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Vice President Hillman Earns CASE Tribute Award

Regional Honor Salutes Her Professionalism and Mentoring Efforts

December 23, 2008

By Paula Selleck

Pamela Hillman

Vice President for University Advancement Pamela Hillman is this year’s winner of the District VII Tribute Award of the Council for Advancement and Support of Education, an international association of professionals who advance educational institutions.

The regional honor recognizes those who have maintained the highest standards of professionalism in their advancement careers of 10 years or more and shared their expertise with members of the profession. Hillman received the award earlier this month at a tribute luncheon, held in San Francisco, an annual recognition event for the organization’s western region.

“I am proud to have served six colleges and universities in various capacities from clerk to vice president,” said Hillman. “It is wonderful to be recognized for contributing to one’s profession, but the privilege has been mine,” she said before those gathered at the event.

“Pam Hillman has hit the highest notes of her advancement career right here at Cal State Fullerton,” said CSUF President Milton A. Gordon. “This year alone, we celebrated two milestone gifts to the university that total more than $35 million. Her superb leadership in University Advancement and able partnership with others on campus made these gifts possible.”

Hillman’s career in higher education spans 30 years of service to both public and private institutions in California, in the arenas of annual giving, major gifts, comprehensive campaigns, volunteer coordination and corporate relations, as well as her current role as the university’s chief advancement officer. She has served as vice president for university advancement at Cal State Fullerton since 2003 and also is executive director of the CSUF Philanthropic Foundation.

“I know of no one who better embodies the accomplishments and characteristics that this award honors,” stated Mary Daily, director of executive communications for UCLA, where the two were colleagues in the 1990s. “Pam is a natural at building teams and creating leaders. She is the most accomplished strategist I have ever known, and her singular abilities are demonstrated by her stellar accomplishments over the years,” she added.

Before joining Cal State Fullerton, Hillman was credited with a string of fundraising successes at Caltech, UCLA, UC Riverside and Mount St. Mary’s College.

“Pam’s achievements are consistently noteworthy and have made a true difference to her institutions,” noted Peter N. Smits, Fresno State’s vice president for university advancement.

Hillman was associate vice chancellor for development at UC Riverside from 2000-03, vice president for institutional advancement at Mount St. Mary’s College from 1994-2000, director of development for UCLA’s Anderson School from 1991-94 and Caltech’s director of annual giving from 1987-91. Also at Caltech, she was associate and assistant director of annual giving from 1984-87, as well as conference coordinator for corporate relations from 1981-84.

While acknowledging her prowess and track record in fundraising, Theresa Mendoza, senior adviser for campus advancement for the California State University Office of the Chancellor, noted “it is Pam’s heartfelt commitment to serving her community of colleagues that is most noteworthy. As a mentor, she has been personally involved in the professional development of her young staff, often mapping our career paths and seeding opportunities for their growth.”

Reflecting on her two stints as a member of Hillman’s staff at UCLA, Theresa A. Davis, now serving as campaign director of the California Science Center, characterized Hillman as “intellectually sharp and clearheaded regarding team goals. She shares the glory and absorbs the blame. She coaches with kindness, consideration and correction, all with an eye on meeting the goal.”

Hillman is the co-author of a CASE book on annual giving programs and has served in a variety of leadership positions for the organization, including chairing the CASE District VII Executive Committee.

She earned her bachelor’s degree from Cal State Northridge and master’s degree from Cal Lutheran.

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