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Inaugural NACUBO Fellows Program to Prepare Higher Education’s Future Leaders


(Washington, D.C.)—At a critical time for higher education leadership, the National Association of College and University Business Officers is pleased to announce its inaugural cohort of NACUBO Fellows.

Fifteen aspiring chief business officers from colleges and universities across the country have been selected to participate in the new one-year leadership development program. As NACUBO Fellows, participants will work with higher education presidents, provosts, and seasoned CBOs to deepen their knowledge of business management, institutional communications, and the expanding role of the CBO on campus.

NACUBO welcomes the following Fellows for 2016-17:

  • Dawn Alston, Spelman College, director, budget and contracts
  • Yolanda Bonnette, Fayetteville State University, associate vice chancellor for business and finance
  • Paul Byrnes, Emory University Laney Graduate School, chief business officer
  • Beverly Cotton, University of North Texas, associate vice president, budget and analytics
  • Mark Detterick, University of Richmond, associate vice president, financial planning and budget
  • Jo Ellen DiNucci, Boise State University, associate vice president for finance and administration
  • Kelly Epting, University of South Carolina, associate vice president for finance
  • Dawn Gamadanis, Kennesaw State University, assistant vice president for financial management
  • Jolene King, University of Alabama at Birmingham, assistant vice president, facilities administration
  • Charles McFarland, Wittenberg University, assistant vice president, finance and administration
  • Ismael Perez, York College, City University of New York, assistant vice president, planning and budget
  • Melissa Peters, Stetson University, associate vice president for budget
  • Katy Rees, California State University, San Marcos, associate vice president of administration
  • Richard Sears, University of West Georgia, assistant vice president for finance
  • Tricia Spellman, Dartmouth College, assistant vice president for finance

The cohort is embarking on its year as higher education faces complex issues on many fronts. The nation's student population is evolving, some institutions are contemplating new tuition strategies, and recent college and university endowment returns are lower than in the past. Meanwhile, NACUBO research shows many current chief business officers plan their next career move to be retirement.

"With increasing CBO retirements expected in the coming years, it is critical that we prepare key talent to lead our industry into the future," said Marta Perez Drake, NACUBO's vice president of professional development. "The Fellows represent the best of the sector's talent pipeline, and we look forward to helping them grow as higher education business professionals."

The NACUBO Fellows Program will formally kick off during a workshop preceding the NACUBO 2016 Annual Meeting in Montréal this summer. For more information on the NACUBO Fellows Program, contact Elizabeth LaRocca at Media inquiries can be directed to Katy Hopkins at

NACUBO, founded in 1962, is a nonprofit professional organization representing chief administrative and financial officers at more than 2,100 colleges and universities across the country. NACUBO's mission is to advance the economic viability, business practices and support for higher education institutions in fulfillment of their missions. For more information, visit