When Pamela Gray begins her new role as senior director of philanthropy for the University of Kentucky College of Agriculture, Food and Environment on Sept.1, she will be coming home to a campus she once roamed as an undergraduate.
Gray, who grew up on a dairy farm in Wisconsin, earned an undergraduate degree in communications from UK.
“I came to UK to walk-on the volleyball team plus I grew up watching UK Wildcat basketball,” she said. “I was a first-generation college student being the youngest of six and the first to attend college. UK offered the best program for me as a student and it felt like home. I am excited that this position gives me the opportunity to make an impact on students who are like me. Also, much of my volunteer work is in agriculture, and this position marries my roots in agriculture and my love for this university.”
As senior director, Gray will provide leadership and vision for the college’s philanthropic programs and continue to build and develop a robust fundraising operation. She will also be responsible formanaging and growing the philanthropy office and staff.
She has experience in all levels of fundraising and has served in many roles throughout her career—chief executive officer, fundraising data manager, major gifts officer, principal gifts officer, planned giving/gift planning officer and most recently as director of development, gift planning at Rice University in Houston, Texas. In addition to her UK degree, Gray has a graduate degree from the University of Denver with an emphasis in philanthropic leadership.
“This is an exciting time for the college, as we prepare to implement an expanded philanthropy program to move forward several ambitious facility priorities and to expand our fundraising team,” said Nancy Cox, dean of the college. “We are happy to have Pamela Gray in this leadership position; her experience and expertise will enable the college to better serve the Commonwealth as well as our own faculty, staff and students.”
The college has an exceptionally close and productive working relationship with the university’s Office of Philanthropy, and collaborates closely with centralized principal gift, planned giving and annual giving programs, as well as major gifts and corporate/foundation fundraising.
Laura Skillman, 859-323-4761