Barbara M. Wessel
Barbara M. Wessel
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BUILDING ON TWO DECADES of volunteer fundraising and alumni relations experience, Barbara began her professional career in institutional advancement in 1985. As a volunteer and as a professional she has earned a reputation for her ability to create new development and alumni relations programs. And she advances established programs to significantly higher levels. Donors and volunteers cite Barbara’s ability to make giving fun and satisfying. Professionals who have worked with her appreciate her ability to teach and to lead by example. Barbara combines clarity and precision with a warm gracious style in all her communications. She has an ability to articulate abstract concepts with concrete illustrations and language that is easy to understand. Her work style motivates others to assume responsibility, undertake new projects with confidence, and to grow professionally. It is her commitment to the advancement profession that led her to establish Wessel Associates.

BEGINNING HER PROFESSIONAL advancement career as assistant vice president for development and college relations at Cazenovia College, Barbara quickly earned recognition for annual fund excellence from the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education (CASE). She has a finely honed sensitivity to the needs of the medical and social services communities from her efforts as Associate Director for Development at the Health Science Center Foundation at Syracuse and various volunteer commitments.

HER SUCCESS as a major gift officer at her alma mater in its $160 million Campaign for Syracuse led to responsibility to implement and manage development programs in the University’s various schools and colleges for its recent $350 million Commitment to Learning campaign. Most recently, as Vice President for Institutional Advancement, Barbara reorganized that department at Saint Michael’s College in Vermont and launched a $52 million effort, Visions: A Campaign for the Saint Michael’s Student.

IN AN 11-YEAR VOLUNTEER COMMITMENT, Barbara created and managed a highly successful development operation for the 120,000-member Gamma Phi Beta Sorority, establishing annual giving, major gifts, and planned giving programs for its foundation. Currently, she serves on the Board of Visitors for the College of Health Professions and Human Services at Syracuse University and chairs its Development Committee, the Board of Directors of the National Panhellenic Conference Foundation as a member of its Development and Finance Committees, and the Region I Board of the Vermont Symphony Orchestra and its Development Committee. Her earlier 12-year commitment as trustee and then chair of the Board of Trustees of the Manlius Library in Central New York, and her fund-raising efforts for the Library, earned her a citizen of the year award from the town.

WITH A DEGREE IN MATHEMATICS from Syracuse University and corporate experience as a systems engineer for IBM, Barbara brings a business focus to the advancement profession and an innate aptitude for incorporating technology into its processes. Barbara’s personal philanthropic history brings the perspectives and sensitivities of the donor to all phases of her professional efforts.