University Relations becomes integral part of University Advancement
In an effort to further streamline Radford University’s administrative operations and following the recent integration of the Division of Information Technology into the Division of Finance and Administration, the Office of University Relations will combine operations and staffing with the Office of University Advancement. This consolidated administrative area will be led by Wendy Lowery, who will serve in an expanded role as Vice President for Advancement and University Relations. In being asked to lead the integrated area, Vice President Lowery said, “I am honored to have an opportunity to bring these talented teams together. There is a great deal of synergy with regard to the scope of work and the level of professionalism exhibited by the outstanding individuals and proud Highlanders that comprise these important areas.”
Chief of Staff Ashley Schumaker, who joined the Radford family in July 2016 and served as Vice President for University Relations since August 2018, will now serve in a new role as Vice President for Strategic Operations in which she will lead the University’s COVID-19 response and implementation and be designated as the University’s COVID-19 coordinator. This role is being recommended by the federal government and required by the Commonwealth of Virginia for public higher education institutions. In the area of strategic operations, Vice President Schumaker will have responsibility for the University’s crisis communications and strategic planning, as well as campus-wide collaboration and operational oversight. She will continue to serve in the role as Chief of Staff by overseeing the daily operations of the Office of the President. She will also oversee Board of Visitors functions, executive communications, and government relations, as well as the Office of Institutional Equity. In being appointed to this expanded role, Vice President Schumaker said, “I am honored to continue serving the Radford family and provide necessary focus and critical support as we navigate challenging times for both our institution and our communities.”
President Brian O. Hemphill, Ph.D. said, “Radford University is closely examining any and all ways in which we can consolidate administrative operations, while fulfilling our critical mission and providing continued engagement and outstanding service. University Advancement and University Relations have a long and successful history of collaboration. I am confident that this consolidation will further the strong partnership built and fostered under the leadership of Vice Presidents Lowery and Schumaker and those who led these areas before them. I would be remiss if I did not express my sincere appreciation to Vice President Schumaker for her incredible work in leading the University Relations team by sharing the Radford story and promoting the Highlander spirit.”
Following the administrative consolidation, which becomes effective on July 15, 2020, the Office of University Advancement and Office of University Relations will function as a single unit.