18:00 PM

Ohio State University Announces Senior Leadership Changes

Ohio State President E. Gordon Gee announced today that Michael C. Eicher will join the university as senior vice president for Advancement. He will oversee the full integration of Ohio State’s fundraising, alumni relations, and communications efforts, and lead the university’s current $2.5 billion campaign. Eicher assumes the position on Nov. 1, with formal appointment by the University’s Board of Trustees expected during its November meeting.

“Ohio State is incredibly fortunate to have attracted Mike Eicher,” said Ohio State President Gee. “He is among the nation’s most accomplished leaders in higher education fundraising, having created and led two of the most successful university fundraising campaigns on record.”

Gee co-led the search team with Jeff Kaplan, who currently serves as senior vice president for Advancement and president of The Ohio State University Foundation. “Mike will build on the exceptional foundation that has been laid by Jeff Kaplan and his team,” said Gee.

Eicher joins Ohio State from The Johns Hopkins University, where he currently serves as senior vice president for External Affairs and Development. In that capacity, he is responsible for attracting private support, strengthening the institution’s relationships with alumni and friends, and overseeing Johns Hopkins’ communications program. When he joined Johns Hopkins in 2006, he assumed leadership of a campaign that concluded in December 2008, with commitments of more than $3.7 billion.

“Mike Eicher will be a tremendous asset to the university,” said Board of Trustees Chair Robert H. Schottenstein. “As we move aggressively toward implementing our advancement model, Mike will provide critical leadership.”

Prior to working at Johns Hopkins, Eicher was vice chancellor at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). There, he was responsible for the institution’s efforts in fundraising, alumni relations, communications, and government and community relations. He designed and led UCLA’s $3 billion fundraising campaign, which concluded in 2005.

“Ohio State is a superb institution that is moving into the front ranks of American universities at a remarkable pace,” said Eicher. “I am grateful for the opportunity to be part of the university at an unparalleled time in its history.”

Eicher joins Ohio State just as an executive-level working group has completed a blueprint for integrating the strategic planning, programs, budgets, and staff teams of the institution’s fundraising, alumni relations, and communications functions. He will succeed Jeff Kaplan, who, in addition to leading advancement and fundraising, has served as special assistant to the president since 2007.

In the past two years, Kaplan has overseen Ohio State’s first and second most successful fundraising years in the institution’s history. On Nov. 1, he will assume a new role in which he will continue to work with senior leaders throughout the university on projects critical to the institution’s success. Since returning to Ohio State in 2007, he has served in a variety of top management positions, including vice president for Business Development and Collaborative Advancement at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center and as senior vice president for Administration and Planning.

Kaplan noted that the search exceeded his greatest expectations. “As we sought a new advancement leader, it was clear that Mike Eicher’s national stature and highly successful experience leading complex public and private institutions were exactly the right fit to help Ohio State capitalize on our unprecedented moment of opportunity.”

About The Ohio State University
Founded in 1870, The Ohio State University is a world-class public research university and the leading comprehensive teaching and research institution in the state of Ohio. With more than 63,000 students (including 56,000 in Columbus), a major medical center, 14 colleges, 80 centers, and 175 majors, the university offers its students tremendous breadth and depth of opportunity in the liberal arts, the sciences, and the professions.