NPR Names Ronald J. Schiller Senior Vice President for Development and President, NPR Foundation
September 3, 2009, Washington, D.C. — Ronald J. Schiller, currently Vice President for Alumni Relations and Development for University of Chicago, will become NPR’s top fundraiser later this month. NPR’s CEO and President Vivian Schiller announced today that Ron Schiller (they are not related), has been appointed to the position of Senior Vice President for Development of NPR and President of the NPR Foundation. His appointment will begin on a full-time basis on October 15, and he will report directly to Ms. Schiller. He will lead NPR’s fundraising programs – including major and planned giving, and foundation grants, which currently account for NPR’s third largest source of revenue. The NPR Foundation is a private, non-profit organization whose mission is to raise financial support for NPR, Inc. The Foundation holds the NPR Endowment, including the majority of the $230 million bequest made by Mrs. Joan B. Kroc in 2003.
“Ron has performed far beyond expectations at every institution he has served,” said Vivian Schiller. ”I am thrilled he is joining us at this critical time to lead our efforts in raising the funds necessary for NPR and our stations to thrive.”
“NPR is an integral part of millions of people’s lives every day,” said Ron Schiller. “The audience has a relationship with NPR that is personal and important, one that sets it apart from other news and media organizations. My mission is to help NPR and its stations throughout the country to realize the financial support needed to innovate and expand public service.”
The announcement of Ron Schiller’s appointment comes at a pivotal time for NPR. Audience levels have reached a new high at 27.5 million listeners each week, and a series of major innovations including a website re-launch and worldwide mobile strategy are underway – despite a challenging economic climate. Ron Schiller’s appointment is the second major hire made by Vivian Schiller, who joined NPR in January of this year. In June, Debra Delman was appointed SVP of Strategic Operations and Finance.
Mr. Schiller brings 20 years of experience to NPR, rising quickly from development officer to executive roles in fundraising and institutional advancement. He led efforts that resulted in unprecedented revenue growth in total fundraising and transformational gifts at the University of Chicago in each of his four years. He was integral to the success of The Chicago Initiative Capital Campaign, exceeding the original goal and raising $2.38 billion. Working closely with the University’s Boards, he created a new vision for Alumni Relations and Development, and led a reorganization that integrated the two groups and expanded their reach through new offices throughout the U.S. In addition to the University of Chicago, Mr. Schiller has led fundraising on behalf of Carnegie Mellon, Northeastern University, Cornell, the New England Conservatory of Music and the Eastman School of Music. Mr. Schiller earned a Bachelor of Arts in Linguistics from Cornell University.
He will maintain his residence in Aspen, Colorado with his partner Alan Fletcher, an accomplished composer and President of the Aspen Music Festival and School, and will commute regularly to Washington, DC.
Mr. Schiller succeeds Mark Vogelzang, former President and CEO of Vermont Public Radio, who has served as NPR’s Interim VP of Development. “We are grateful to Mark for his leadership this past six months,” said Ms. Schiller. “NPR is on course to meet this year’s revenue goals despite a tough economic climate, and Mark has effectively set the stage for the next phase in our growth.”