Candidates face community at MSSU
November 02, 2011
The search committee at Missouri Southern State University- Joplin has announced that two finalists have been chosen for the position of vice president for university development and executive director of the university foundation. JoAnn Graffam, serving as the position's interim director, and Morgan R. Clevenger, a doctoral candidate at the University of Missouri and former regional vice president for Students in Free Enterprise (SIFE) will be presented to the campus community. Clevenger will be scheduled for 2:45-3:45 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 10 in Corley Auditorium of Webster Hall and Graffam from 2:45-3:45 on Tuesday, Nov. 15, in Cornell Auditorium of Plaster Hall.

Who the candidates are

Clevenger is currently completing his Doctor of Education at the University of Missouri-Columbia where he is submitting his dissertation on "Corporate Citizenship Engagement in American Higher Education." He holds a Master of Business Administration from West Virginia University and a bachelor's degree in editorial news with a minor in political science from the same institution. He is a certified fundraising executive (CFRE). He served as regional vice president for SIFE from 2008 to 2011 and held the posts of associate director of development in the office of institutional advancement, assistant professor of business in the social sciences division and director of the Alan B. Mollohan Training Center, all at Alderson-Broaddus College in Philippi, WVA. He also was director of development and 4-H alumni relations in the office of development at the West Virginia University Extension Service. At Hargrave Military Academy's Office of Institutional Advancement in Chatham, VA, he was vice president for institutional advancement and at Davis & Elkins College in Elkins, WVA, he served as acting vice president of development and director of the annual fund. He was a development administrator at Morgantown's Chestnut Ridge Community Church, public information coordinator for Software Valley Corporation and Software Valley Foundation, Inc., in Morgantown, W.Va., and a public affairs specialist for the U.S. Department of Energy at the Morgantown Energy Technology Center.

As the current Missouri Southern State University Interim Vice President for Development and Executive Director of the Missouri Southern State University Foundation, Graffam oversees the foundation, alumni affairs office, university relations and marketing and the resource center. Prior to her current post, she was serving the university as development officer-major gifts, a position she held since 2010. Before coming to Missouri Southern Graffam served as director of campaigns and major gifts at Lee Academy in Lee, ME. From 2006-2008, she was executive director of Rutland Economic Development Corporation in Rutland, VT. She has held positions as director of recruitment for the Vermont Department of Economic Development and as chief executive officer of the Girl Scouts of Penn's Woods Council in Wilkes-Barre, PA. She also was marketing and development coordinator for the Northern Maine Development Commission in Caribou, ME, and development manager and operations manager for the Kelmscott Rare Breeds Foundation in Lincolnville, ME. Other posts she has held include director of university relations and development at the University of Maine at Fort Kent and director of communications for Delta Dental Plans Association in Chicago. She began her career as news bureau manager at MSSU. She holds a Bachelor of Arts from MSSU and a Master of Arts from the SI Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University in Syracuse, NY.

Members of the search committee include President Bruce W. Speck, who is serving as chair; Jared Bruggeman, athletics director; Dr. Sherry Buchanan, chair of the Missouri Southern Board of Governors; Rayma Bekebrock Davis, president of the Missouri Southern Foundation Board; Dr. Tia Strait, dean of the school of technology; and Rob Yust, vice president for business affairs.

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