Stockton’s Jessica Kowal Named Professional of Year, Vision Tour Recognized with Two Awards

For Immediate Release


Contact:         Maryjane Briant
                        News and Media Relations Director
                        Galloway, N.J. 08205
                        (609) 652-4593

Galloway, N.J. - Stockton’s “Presidential Vision Tour: A Distinctive Vision: Embracing Stockton’s Future,”  and Jessica Kowal, executive director of Development and Alumni Affairs, were recognized on Monday with 2017 Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) District II awards.

The Vision Tour received a Silver Award in Best Practices in Alumni Relations and a Bronze Award in the Special Events category.

Kowal, a resident of Egg Harbor Township, N.J., was honored as the CASE District II Professional of the Year.

“I am sincerely honored to receive such a special award,” said Kowal. “This award really belongs to Stockton! It is a well-deserved recognition of the fantastic team who surround me, the terrific leadership I have and the amazing institution I am privileged to work for every day. The Presidential Vision Tour was truly a collective effort with so many campus partners.  I am so proud to have Stockton’s dedication and work acknowledged and celebrated on a national level.”

CASE is the professional association serving educational institutions and the advancement professionals who work on their behalf in alumni relations, communications, development, marketing and allied areas. The awards were presented during the CASE District II annual conference in Baltimore, Feb. 26-28, 2017.

Stockton is a member institution of CASE District II, the largest of the eight CASE districts, spanning from Canada to West Virginia. In 2016, it received more than 3,350 entries for consideration in nearly 100 categories by more than 713 member higher education institutions, independent schools and nonprofits.   

The Best Practices award recognizes exemplary programs, projects and initiatives in alumni relations that serve as models for other institutions, provide a successful solution to overcoming challenges, reflect strategic use of resources, achieve significant results and/or utilize innovative practices.

The Professional of the Year Award is given annually to one professional and recognizes an advancement professional who has demonstrated exceptional achievement in the development of an institutional advancement program or innovative execution of programs within an area of advancement; contributed to the profession through work with CASE; and volunteered in service to the community or charitable organizations.

“I am very proud of Jess and not surprised by her selection,” said Philip Ellmore, chief development officer and executive director of the University Foundation. “Jess’ work is more than deserving, and she is a true representative of the work we strive to achieve in the advancement of Stockton’s mission.”

President Harvey Kesselman launched the university’s first vision tour in January 2016, making 10 tour stops in six states and connecting with hundreds of alumni and friends over the next six months.

“The Presidential Vision Tour was a campus collaborative effort,” said Susan Davenport, executive vice president and chief of staff. “More than 50 individuals and nine departments worked on the initiative. We are thrilled to have the hard work and talent of our teams recognized by our peer institutions.”  

Others from Stockton who attended various CASE events along with Kowal and her husband, Danny, included:

President Kesselman and First Lady Lynne Kesselman, Chief Development Officer and Foundation Executive Director Philip Ellmore, Associate Chief Development Officer Cynthia Crager, Sara Faurot, Nick Sena, Kelly Morris, Marianne Larsen and Danielle Channell of the Foundation/Development team; Foundation board member Ed Wrobleski and his wife, June; Geoff Pettifer, executive director of University Relations & Marketing;  and Lonnie Folks, director for Athletic Development and Program Expansion.

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