College brings in new talent to finish science center fundraising

The college has a new vice president for development and alumni engagement. 

Evelyn Buchanan, who will leave her position as the vice president for institutional advancement at Carthage College in Kenosha, Wisconsin, will step into the position at Franklin College in late May after the spring semester. 

“I’m excited for the opportunity at Franklin because of its mission and strategic plan,” she said. “I feel that the college is poised to take the next leap forward in its development and alumni engagement programs.” 

Gail Lowry left the vice president position in January to take a job at Gleaners Food Bank of Indiana to do philanthropy work. 

One project Lowry left behind is the $17 million-dollar new science center, which is slated to begin construction on May 18 at a groundbreaking ceremony. 

In her time with the project, Lowry was a part of a team that raised $8.4 million for the campaign. 

That still leaves almost half of the total costs —$8.6 million — in the hands of Buchanan. 

“My role will be to raise additional funds for the science center and the needs of that building,” she said. “One of the first things I’ll do when I arrive on campus in late May is sit down and do an assessment of where we are in terms of fundraising for that building and create a strategy for moving forward to raise the remaining funds to meet that goal as expeditiously as possible.” 

Buchanan is no stranger to fundraising. 

With more than 20 years of experience in higher education development, Buchanan said she hopes to establish connections with alumni and potential donors in a meaningful way in order to maximize the opportunities for current students. 

“My role is to nurture and foster those connections so that they become even stronger,” she said. “I will do that by offering programming that is meaningful to alumni and offers value to them. I’ll be meeting and speaking with them and learning about their Franklin experience.” 

Some of Buchanan’s former workplaces have been colleges similar to Franklin College, including Colgate University and Carthage College — both private, liberal arts universities that enroll almost 3,000 students. 

“I’m a believer in a liberal arts education, and I think Franklin delivers on that,” she said. “Alongside of that, education is preparing students for life after graduation. I think Franklin is ahead of the game in that area as well.” 

Buchanan said her ultimate goal is to provide opportunities for students in her new role. 

“My job is to bring resources to the college through philanthropy and volunteerism,” she said. “I’m looking forward to working with President [Thomas] Minar and other members of the team to do that.”

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About Leigh Durphey 32 Articles

Leigh Durphey is the copy chief for The Franklin. She is an English and secondary education major with a multimedia journalism minor. She’s committed to various English-related activities on campus, including the role of president of the English honorary society Sigma Tau Delta. In her free time, Leigh enjoys reading, crafting and spending time with her dog, Bear.

This is Leigh’s fourth year in a leadership role on staff. She previously held the executive editor position.

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