• Elizabeth McClanahan, a former justice on the Supreme Court of Virginia who now serves as president and dean of the Appalachian School of Law, has been named CEO of the Virginia Tech Foundation. The foundation manages the university’s endowment, has an extensive real estate portfolio, and encourages economic development by fostering connections between Virginia Tech and numerous partners.

    McClanahan has served as an adjunct professor of finance and senior advisor to the dean in Virginia Tech’s Pamplin College of Business since September 2019, but her ties to the university go back much further.

    “Virginia Tech played a formative role in my life,” McClanahan said. “My mother hosted Extension homemaker clubs when I was a young child. I joined 4-H at age 9 and in my teenage years attended 4-H Congress on campus. Virginia Tech is now a global university and world leader in higher education. Joining the foundation is the opportunity of a lifetime — especially at a time when Tech’s energy, innovation, and trajectory are unmatched.”

    McClanahan will become foundation CEO on June 1, 2021, succeeding John Dooley, who in August announced he would retire. The foundation CEO is a member of the Virginia Tech President’s Cabinet.

    Former Virginia Tech Foundation Board Chair Sandra Davis, who co-chaired the search committee with Pinkney, said she was “excited by the talent Elizabeth brings to this role that is so vital for the foundation and the university. I think the transition will be positive, continuing the success of current goals, while providing strong leadership on future developments and opportunities, including growing the endowment.”

    Dooley, the outgoing foundation CEO, plans to help McClanahan transition into her new position. Years ago, he was executive director of the Virginia 4-H Foundation while she was a member of its board. “She really knows well the public-higher-education community in Virginia,” Dooley said. “She’s been in positions where she has seen the value that higher education brings to the economic vitality of the state, and I’m sure that will be of benefit as she assumes this role.”

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  • John Dooley, who has served as CEO of the Virginia Tech Foundation since 2012 and has helped the university fulfill its land-grant mission by making a difference in communities for nearly 40 years, has announced he plans to retire in the spring.

    A national search to fill the position is being led by a committee headed by Sandra Davis, who chairs the foundation board, and Dwayne Pinkney, senior vice president and chief business officer for the university.

    Dooley joined Virginia Tech in 1982, when he was hired at age 27 to direct the then-brand new Northern Virginia 4-H Center, located in Front Royal. Over decades, the essence of his role has remained largely the same, to broaden the university’s impact, even as the scope of his responsibilities has grown.

    The Virginia Tech Foundation, which Dooley heads, manages the university’s endowment and encourages economic development by fostering connections between the university and numerous partners.

    Under Dooley, the endowment more than doubled, to more than $1.3 billion as of June 30. Meanwhile, the total of value of all Virginia Tech Foundation assets, which include property as well as the endowment, increased by roughly a billion dollars, from $1.2 billion to more than $2.2 billion. The amount of real estate managed by the foundation has also grown significantly, to more than 1,963,600 square feet. Nearly 280,000 more square feet will come under foundation management as ongoing projects are completed.

    Dooley’s legacy goes far beyond numbers, however. It’s visible in the high-impact projects he has helped to bring about and in the many lasting partnerships and deep friendships he has developed while working on the university’s behalf across Virginia and around the world.

    Sandra Davis added: “Personally, and on behalf of the Virginia Tech Foundation, I want to thank John for his above and beyond dedication to the foundation, as well as to the Hokie Nation, for his awesome leadership growing the presence of the university across the commonwealth and throughout the globe. For this and all of John’s work we will be eternally grateful, and John will indeed be missed.

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  • As required by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, the VTF Executive Committee will receive public input on the proposed FY21 WVTF Budget at its June 5 meeting. The budget presentation and time for public input is scheduled for 10:00 - 10:45 a.m. The meeting will be facilitated via Zoom providing registrants with both dial in and online options. The public can register to attend at https://vtf.org/register/wvtf.

  • The foundation accounting department has released its fiscal 2020 year-end closing schedule. The year-end closing dates for deposits, disbursements, establishing new funds, and corrections to foundation funds are provided on the downloadable schedule. We ask that all departments put in their requests early to allow ample time for processing.

  • When student members of Virginia Tech’s Commodity Investing by Students, or COINS, group heard that spring break was going to be extended for a week and that classes would then move online, they quickly began to think of ways they could keep operating from a distance.
    For some members, that distance was farther than others.

    Colburn Hassman, a senior from Kilmarnock, Virginia, was vacationing in Sweden when he heard the news. But as someone who spent his entire sophomore year abroad, Hassman was prepared to finish out the semester in Stockholm, Sweden, where he now lives with friends he met as a sophomore studying abroad.

    “Having Colburn in Sweden has allowed us to add an international time zone, which is cool for a trading and investment group because when we’re sleeping, Colburn might be up checking on the markets and thinking of strategies so he’ll send us messages on things we can work while he winds down his day and vice versa,” said Muralidhar. “This is really cool because this is what happens at trading and investment firms in the professional world – they’ve got people sitting in Europe, sitting in Asia, so that when markets close in one area, there are people awake in other areas who are ready to act.”

    While the markets have been extremely volatile, COINS members have continued to show their interest by putting in extra time and effort to understand and analyze how societal, agricultural, and political systems are connected and influence commodity markets.

    COINS is housed in the Virginia Tech Department of Agricultural and Applied Economics in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, through which Hassman is completing his bachelor’s degree this semester, and manages investments of up to $1 million for the Virginia Tech Foundation.

    Read the full story here.

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