The first meeting for the Board of Directors of the new University of North Georgia (UNG) Alumni Association is scheduled for Jan. 10, when bylaws will be approved to formally create the association. Comprising 30 members, the board will steer the new association in its mission to engage UNG alumni, encourage financial support, and serve as a conduit between alumni and the university.
The new association will represent recent alumni from UNG, as well as alumni from Gainesville State College and North Georgia College & State University, which consolidated in January 2013 to form UNG. The inaugural board will involve members from the former alumni associations and new board members.
"The creation of the UNG Alumni Association is a very positive step toward strengthening the university's legacy and establishing a support base for current and future UNG students," said Phil Collins, associate vice president for alumni relations and annual giving. "Of the recently consolidated institutions in the University System of Georgia, UNG is the first to join its alumni associations, which is a testament to the hardworking individuals of both former associations who are dedicated to forming a strong, united association to support UNG."
UNG also was the first of the University System of Georgia institutions consolidated in 2013 to combine its philanthropic foundations; the UNG Foundation Inc. was created in July 2014.
"Our primary focus over the next six months will be engaging alumni by educating everyone about the UNG Alumni Association and encouraging active participation," said Chris Stenander, association president. "This will ensure that we have strong representation from across the university, putting in place a firm foundation for the association's future, which has already been started by the Alumni Council Steering Committee's hard work during the past six months. I am confident we have a great start in all these areas based on the leadership in our executive committee, board members, ex-officio members and the committees we are putting in place to get the work done."
The association's executive committee includes: Chris Stenander, president; Brad Barton, vice president; Jackie Wallace, secretary; and Matt McCree, treasurer. Board members include Bob Babich, Jeff Barkley, Jeff Brown, Haley Carter, Nancy Clark, Ben Clark, Bob Clark, Amy Coffee, Lesley Congdon, Jason Cox, Anne Davis, Cindy Densmore, Semuel Maysonet, Rob Reid, Elizabeth Rhodes, Andrea Strickland, and James Wright.
Ex-officio members of the board include several UNG administrators: Dr. Bonita Jacobs, president; Dr. Pat Donat, senior vice president of academic affairs and provost; Dr. Al Panu, senior vice president of university affairs; Mac McConnell, senior vice president of business and finance; Bruce Howerton, interim vice president for university advancement; Dr. Janet Marling, vice president of student affairs; COL (retired) Tom Palmer, commandant of cadets; Lindsay Reeves, director of athletics; and Phil Collins, executive director of the UNG Alumni Association.
Following this transitional year, board members will serve two-year terms. After serving their first term, board members are eligible for re-election for one additional term; after serving two consecutive terms, a board member must wait one year before becoming eligible for election to the board for another term.