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Office of the Senior Vice President
Eric C. Johnson
Eric C. Johnson
Senior Vice President for University Advancement
Eric is senior vice president for University Advancement, overseeing the university’s entire fundraising, alumni engagement, and donor relations enterprise. Eric has 37 years of fundraising experience, 33 of them at Tufts, where he began his career as a major gift officer for the School of Arts and Sciences. He has also worked as director of development for Arts and Sciences, director of principal and leadership gifts, and executive director of development. Eric helped develop the President’s Marathon Challenge in 2003, the year he ran his first marathon. He is currently leading the university’s Brighter World campaign.
Vice President of Development
Sara is vice president of development, overseeing the fundraising and campaign management teams, and is a key strategic partner in leading fundraising across the university. Prior to joining Tufts in 2020, Sara was deputy vice president of development at Princeton. Sara also served as president of China Institute in America, the oldest U.S.-China organization in the U.S., and as global director at Avenues: The World School, managing operations in China. After graduating from Princeton with a degree in East Asian Studies/Chinese, Sara studied at Peking University and worked at a consulting firm in Beijing for four years.
Bill Gehling, A74, G79
Bill Gehling, A74, G79
Executive Director, Office of Alumni Engagement
Bill, A74, G79, is executive director for the Office of Alumni Engagement. In collaboration with alumni engagement staff at the university’s professional schools, the Office of Alumni Engagement coordinates programming for reunions, alumni chapters, shared interest groups, career development, and lifelong learning. Previously, he served as senior advisor for University Advancement for four years following his 16-year tenure as director of Athletics. Bill was honored in 2015 with the Tufts Athletics Distinguished Achievement Award, as well as the Hosea Ballou Medal. In 2016, he received the Alumni Association’s Distinguished Service Award.
Nancy Mahler, J88
Nancy Mahler, J88
Executive Director of University Advancement
Nancy is Executive Director of University Advancement, overseeing fundraising for the Schools of Arts and Sciences and Engineering, Tisch College of Civic Life, the Fletcher School, and Gift Planning. Previously, Nancy was the senior director of development for the School of Arts and Sciences at Tufts. She brings more than 25 years of experience to the role. Nancy joined Tufts in 2013 from Kaspick & Company, where she was a relationship manager after serving as a vice president at State Street Global Advisors. In both positions, she worked with nonprofits on the planning and investment of their planned giving programs and consulted on complex gifts. She received a BA in political science, magna cum laude, from Tufts and a JD from Boston University School of Law.
Aiden S. O’Garro
Aiden S. O’Garro
Executive Director, Advancement Operations
Aiden is Executive Director of Advancement Operations and oversees budget/finance, information systems, strategic and tactical planning, human resources/staffing and professional development, operations planning and support for the university's Advancement division. Prior to his current role at Tufts, Aiden was Chief Operating Officer at the Massachusetts Office of Business Development, supporting the agency with operations strategy, performance management, and process automation. Aiden also served as Vice President of Operations & Continuous Improvement at the MassDevelopment Finance Agency and he spent 19 years at the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, where he began his career in operations. Aiden earned his degree in Business Administration and Change Management from Eastern Nazarene College and his MBA from the University of Phoenix.
Executive Director of Campaign Management
Jonathan is executive director of campaign management and oversees the Brighter World campaign. Prior to joining Tufts in 2014, he was senior associate vice president for advancement and director of university campaigns at the University of Rochester. Jonathan previously served as assistant vice president for development and senior director of capital projects at Washington University in St. Louis. He started his career in advancement at Caltech. A graduate of Georgetown, Jonathan also holds a master’s degree in radio, television, and film studies from Northwestern.
Executive Director, University Advancement
As Executive Director, Rebecca oversees the development and alumni engagement functions for the School of Medicine, School of Dental Medicine, the Gerald J. and Dorothy R. Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy, Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine, the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, and the Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging, as well as University Advancement's Corporate and Foundation Relations. Previously, she was the senior director of development and alumni relations at the School of Medicine and, before that, she was Tufts’ director of gift planning. A graduate of McGill University, Rebecca was the general manager of Playwrights’ Workshop Montreal. Rebecca completed a residency in new media design at the Canadian Film Centre and was a co-founder of the interactive marketing company, Trapeze Media.
Jeffrey P. Winey, AG90, A22P
Jeffrey P. Winey, AG90, A22P
Senior Director, Principal Gifts and University Initiatives
Jeff, AG90, A22P, is senior director of Principal Gifts and University Initiatives and oversees the University Gift Officer and Asia Relations teams and the Principal Gifts Donor Relations and Stewardship staff. He also manages the Tufts Financial Network and its advisory committee and the President’s Council. Jeff, who has 29 years of experience working for University Advancement, is a former annual fund director and previously worked at Bowdoin College and Babson College. A graduate of Bowdoin, Jeff also holds a master’s degree in urban and environmental policy from Tufts.
About University Advancement
The Tufts University Advancement division is dedicated to advancing the mission of the university by engaging Tufts alumni, organizations, faculty, parents, and friends in mutually beneficial philanthropy and volunteerism. Tufts deeply appreciates its generous donors and is committed to ensuring that gifts are both stewarded well and aligned appropriately with university priorities and values. In 2020, Tufts updated its Gift Policy to articulate the vision for our work with greater clarity and transparency. The Policy opens with Guiding Principles for Gift Acceptance that we encourage all prospective donors to review. Thank you for visiting this site, and please feel free to reach out to any of the staff below with your questions or suggestions.
Senior Director of Annual Giving
Sean started at Tufts in 2007. After holding various fundraising roles at the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy, he assumed the position of senior director of annual giving in 2015. He currently works to help foster a culture of annual giving across the university and lives by the motto, “Every Gift is Jumbo.” Prior to Tufts, he worked as the director of alumni relations at the Rumsey Hall School in Washington Depot, Conn. He is a graduate of Vassar College and, as a conversation starter, likes to share that he has a certificate in applied positive deviance from the Friedman School.
Corporate & Foundation Relations
Senior Director, Corporate and Foundation Relations
Ippolita has served as senior director of Corporate and Foundation Relations (CFR) since 2016 after three years as associate director of CFR for the Tufts University School of Medicine. Prior to joining Tufts, Ippolita was associate director of preclinical research and development at NeuroPhage Pharmaceuticals, and assistant professor of neurology at Massachusetts General Hospital. She earned an MS in biology from the University of Rome/La Sapienza, and a PhD in experimental psychology from Tufts. Ippolita has co-authored more than 30 papers in peer-reviewed journals and books.
Senior Director, Gift Planning
Brooke is the senior director of Gift Planning at Tufts. She helps donors meet their philanthropic, financial, and estate planning goals through planned gifts and gifts of complex assets. Brooke oversees the university’s gift planning team, charitable trust and gift annuity program, and estate contributions. Prior to joining Tufts in 2006, Brooke held gift planning roles at the First Church of Christ, Scientist in Boston. She is past president of the Planned Giving Group of New England and received her BA in international politics and economics from Middlebury College.
School of Arts and Sciences
Senior Director of Arts & Sciences Development
Matt joined Tufts in 2013. As director of development, he oversees the major gifts team for the School of Arts and Sciences, manages relationships with alumni across the country, and serves as the primary University Advancement liaison for the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. He has worked in development for more than 15 years, previously holding positions at Manhattanville College and UC Berkeley. He is an undergraduate alumnus of Colby College and received his MPA at New York University. His wife is also a member of the Tufts community, as a faculty member in the Department of Chemistry.
School of Engineering
Senior Director of Development - Engineering
Leila is Sr. Director of Development for the School of Engineering and Parents Giving Program. Leila has more than 20 years of development experience most recently as VP for Development and Special Assistant to the President at Merrimack College. She also served in a leadership role at Hobart and William Smith Colleges and was Director of Gift Planning at Syracuse University and Rochester Institute of Technology. She is a graduate of Syracuse University and earned her MS in Finance from Bentley University.
School of the Museum of Fine Arts at Tufts
Director of Development
Kelly joined the SMFA at Tufts in 2022 as the Director of Development. Kelly focuses on strategically expanding a broader audience to support the SMFA annual fund, endowment, art sale, and strategic priorities for the future. Prior to taking on this role, she has worked over the past 25 years in major gifts and annual fund strategic planning, leadership development, capital campaign planning, and fundraising program implementation supporting non-profit organizations in the higher education, independent school, charter school, and arts and cultural sectors.
Deeply passionate about the critical importance of access to high-quality educational opportunities for all types of learners, social-emotional learning, and social justice practices to transform the lives of children and adults, regardless of their background, Kelly is a mission-driven fundraiser who finds creative and meaningful ways to engage support.
Kelly has a BA in Art History and History from Florida State University and a MA in Arts Administration from Boston University. An avid yoga practitioner, Peloton rider, gardener, traveler, reader, and amateur photographer, she fills her weekends with her family and getting out to engage with nature and art as much as possible.
Mark Adzigian, A88
Mark Adzigian, A88
Director of Development for Athelics
Mark is responsible for raising funds to support annual operating needs, endowments, and capital projects in the Department of Athletics. Prior to Tufts, he was the general manager for Atlantic Hockey Sports Properties, and also spent 15 years at Sacred Heart University leading multiple areas of operations for athletics. He served as an artillery officer in the U.S. Marine Corps, 1989-1996, and as a trustee of the Silver Bay Family Conference Center on Lake George (N.Y.) for 12 years. Mark graduated from Tufts in 1988 and played lacrosse and hockey. He earned his MS in sport management from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst in 1997.
Parents Giving Program
Gina A. DeSalvo
Gina A. DeSalvo
Director of Parents Giving Program
Gina is director of Tufts’ Parents Giving Program, overseeing parent philanthropy and engagement, the Parents Leadership Council, and events for parents including Parents and Family Weekend. Gina joined Tufts in 2006 as the associate director of volunteer management where she developed the Tufts Fund Gift Officer program. Prior to Tufts, Gina was senior manager of alumni clubs in Boston University’s Office of Development and Alumni Relations, where she worked for eight years. Gina holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Boston University.
Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine
Senior Director, Development and Alumni Engagement
Ana joined Tufts in 2012 as senior director of development and alumni engagement for Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine. She oversees a department that engages and solicits alumni, parents, and friends in support of school priorities that advance health and wellness for all species with compassion and commitment to evidenced-based medicine. Ana has worked in various development roles since 1995 at the Smithsonian Institution, Harvard School of Public Health, and most recently, as director of gift planning at College of the Holy Cross. She holds a BS in biology from the University of Panama.
Director, Veterinary Annual Giving
Stephanie serves as Cummings School’s director of annual giving, a post she has held since 2013. She manages direct mail, email, and telephone solicitation for the School’s 7,000+ constituents. Prior to joining Tufts, she worked as a direct mail and telephone fundraising consultant for political, environmental, wildlife conservation, social service, and health care organizations. She holds a bachelor of arts degree in communication with a minor in English from Boston College, and a master’s degree in public administration and nonprofit management from Suffolk University.
School of Dental Medicine
Senior Director of Development & Alumni Engagement
Stephen serves as the senior director of development and alumni engagement for the School of Dental Medicine, where he works with his team to champion the school’s priorities with donors and volunteers. Steve joined TUSDM in 2019 as the director of development and has experience serving in leadership roles at Father Bill’s & MainSpring, Wheelock College, and as a gift officer at Stonehill College. He is a graduate of Providence College with a degree in history and political science and received a graduate certificate in nonprofit leadership from Wheelock College.
Director, Tufts Dental Fund
Marianne is director of the Tufts Dental Fund, responsible for marketing and fundraising strategy to support the priorities of the School of Dental Medicine. Prior to joining Tufts in 2009, she worked at Simmons College, Emerson College, and Cabot Corporation. She holds a BS in business from Boston University.
The Fletcher School
Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy/Jean Mayer Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging (HNRCA)
Cindy Briggs Tobin
Cindy Briggs Tobin
Senior Director of Development and Alumni Engagement
Cindy joined Tufts in 2000 as the Friedman School’s director of annual giving and alumni engagement. She was promoted to lead the department in 2007 and added the HNRCA to the office’s responsibilities in 2014. She oversees a team that engages, solicits, and stewards alumni and friends, among others, for school and center priorities. Prior to Tufts, she worked in fundraising for MASSPIRG, the American Heart Association, and Boston University. She has a bachelor’s degree in English and psychology from Syracuse University and a master’s degree in public relations from Boston University.
School of Medicine
Director of Development UA - Medical Dev & Alumni Relations
Kim brings more than 15 years of development experience to Tufts School of Medicine. She has held senior positions at St. Francis House, New England College of Optometry, New England Conservatory of Music, the Edward M. Kennedy Institute, and Massachusetts General Hospital.
Jonathan M. Tisch College of Civic Life
Director of Development & Alumni Relations
Emilia Salazar joined Tufts in March 2018 as an associate director of development. She is thrilled to combine her passion for higher education and donor centered fundraising to match donor interests with university needs. Her focus is working with Tufts supporters throughout the East Coast.
Prior to arriving at Tufts, Emilia was a gift officer at Wheelock College, and before that she managed the individual giving program at WEAVE, Inc., the most comprehensive domestic violence agency in Sacramento, California. Emilia has also held fundraising roles at The Boston Conservatory and From the Top. She serves on the Membership Committee for Women in Development of Greater Boston and the Annual Fund Committee for Interlochen Center for the Arts.