Gorecki Alumni Center Certified as ‘Greenest’ Building in North Dakota
The University of North Dakota Alumni Association & Foundation is proud to announce that it has attained LEED Platinum certification for the Gorecki Alumni Center.
The building is the first in North Dakota and the first university alumni center in the country to be constructed under the strictest green guidelines established by the U.S. Green Building Council. It now ranks in the top three percent of the most-energy efficient buildings in the country.
The Gorecki Alumni Center, finished in September 2012, was built to the exacting standards of Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design (LEED) Platinum, but it took a year for those efforts to be certified as successful.
“We set out to build the greenest building in North Dakota,” said Tim O’Keefe, Executive Vice President/CEO of the UND Alumni Association and Foundation. “I’m thrilled that the dream of our LEED donor, the late Glen Gransberg, has been realized. The building is a testament to Glen’s belief in being a good steward of the environment.”
LEED Platinum certification required a number of steps to reduce the environmental impact of construction and operation of the building and improve the air quality for those who work in it. For instance, construction waste was separated into recycling bins rather than taken to a landfill. The building earned points for reducing water usage, and offices in the Gorecki have glass walls that allow daylight to reach into the building’s interior, reducing the need for artificial light.
The building has exceeded several benchmarks in its first year of operation for energy reduction and water conservation. In its first year of operation, the building has reduced energy use by 40 percent compared to a similarly-sized building. 63,000 fewer gallons of water, or 38 percent, were used compared to a traditional office building.
Thanks to efficient mechanical systems, the air quality in the building is also superior to any building in North Dakota.
“Our employees are breathing clean air, enjoying a connection to the outdoors and have truly embraced the ‘green’ lifestyle by recycling, reusing and reducing,” said Kris Compton, chair of the UND Alumni Association board of directors. “The benefits of LEED Platinum can be seen not only on the bottom line, but in the health, productivity and emotional well-being of our staff.”
“North Dakota is in a time of unprecedented growth,” said Lonnie Laffen, partner in the design firm JLG Architects. “We have a responsibility to the long-term health of our state, our citizens and our wallets to design buildings that require the lowest possible maintenance costs with the healthiest indoor environment. The UND Gorecki Alumni Center is the first of a new paradigm in building, where buildings work for their owners and occupants.”
Watch the video of the news conference:
Learn more about the benefits of LEED by watching this video:
Wednesday, November 13, 2013 4:00:00 PM
Carlson Zink named new CEO/Executive VP of UND AA&F
A 25-year employee of the UND Alumni Association & Foundation will take over as the organization’s Executive Vice President and Chief Executive Officer. DeAnna Carlson Zink will take charge following the retirement of current EVP/CEO Tim O’Keefe in March.
“It is my pleasure to be selected as the new Executive Vice President & CEO of the UND Alumni Association & Foundation,” Carlson Zink said. “I believe the organization and UND Foundation and our 115,000 alumni are the margin of difference for this great University.”
Carlson Zink has been the Chief Development Officer and Associate Vice President of the UND AA&F since 2005. She has held a number of other positions during a 25-year career with the nonprofit organization. In her current leadership position, she directs all aspects of fundraising, and has played a major role in the success of the soon-to-be-completed North Dakota Spirit | The Campaign for UND. The campaign passed its $300 million goal early this year, and now stands at $315 million.
“We are pleased to have a valued alum with whom we’ve worked for many years to lead the UND Alumni Association & Foundation,” said UND President Robert O. Kelley. “DeAnna will provide a leadership style with which we are very familiar and in which we have tremendous confidence. We look forward to working with DeAnna as we continue to create an Exceptional UND.”
“DeAnna has been a key leader in the success of the North Dakota Spirit Campaign,” O’Keefe said. “I have so much confidence in her ability to lead this organization because I’ve have experienced her passion and drive every day of the eleven years we have worked together.”
After O’Keefe’s retirement announcement earlier this year, a committee was formed to ensure a smooth transition. The chair of the transition committee, Kris Compton, said Carlson Zink is the only person they considered for the job, but they still did a thorough job of vetting her application. “We interviewed dozens of people; university partners, alumni, co-workers and references, and they all had nothing but praise for DeAnna’s leadership skills, her passion for UND and her fundraising expertise. It became a slam-dunk.”
“Tim has not only raised the bar for our organization, but for philanthropy in our state and within higher education,” Carlson Zink said. “I am excited to build on this strong foundation and to continue to elevate our organization to a position of sustainable excellence for the benefit of the University of North Dakota.”
Tuesday, August 27, 2013 5:33:00 PM
2013 Annual Meeting Time to Reflect on Successful Fiscal Year
The University of North Dakota Alumni Association and Foundation (UND AA&F) celebrated the 124th anniversary of the founding of the Alumni Association at the Annual Meeting of the organization on Thursday, June 13.
The Alumni Association was founded by the first eight graduates of the University of North Dakota on June 13, 1889. Their original goals of maintaining contact with one another and supporting the University have guided our organization’s mission ever since.
UND AA&F Executive Vice President/CEO Tim O’Keefe gave a brief update on the past year as part of the Annual Meeting program. With fiscal year 2013 ending in a few weeks, O’Keefe said the North Dakota Spirit Campaign is on course to total $310 - $312 million by the end of the month. He told those in attendance that the Spirit Campaign will have brought in $40 million in gift commitments for FY13, about four to five times the average annual gift total before the campaign started in 2007.
“It has truly been a team effort,” O’Keefe said, “with the University and President Kelley’s leadership team working hand-in-hand with the Alumni Association & Foundation’s staff.”
O’Keefe touched on highlights of the past fiscal year:
- Oilman Harold Hamm donated $10 million to the College of Engineering and Mines in September. As part of an agreement with the North Dakota Industrial Commission, the gift totaled $14 million, a template, O’Keefe said, for future private/public partnerships
- In August, Altru Health System invested $10 million in UND, with $9 million committed as the lead gift for the UND Athletics High Performance Center, an indoor practice facility for a number of sports teams.
- The grand opening of the Gorecki Alumni Center in October was the culmination of many years of planning and fundraising to provide a home for alumni on campus. O’Keefe noted that the building has also become home to the UND Admissions department, giving potential students a great first impression of campus.
- The biennial Night of Champions: UND Athletics Auction & Gala was a rousing success with the event raising enough to fund more than ten student-athlete scholarships.
- North Dakota Spirit | The Campaign for UND passed its $300 million goal in February.
“We are ending this fiscal year on an extremely high note, and I see great things ahead,” O’Keefe said.
Official business was conducted at the Annual Meeting as well with the election of those who will serve on the Board of Directors of the University of North Dakota Alumni Association & Foundation.
These alumni were elected to the first three-year terms:
- Doug Mark, a 1986 graduate from Minneapolis.
- Cindy Blikre-Roche, a 1991 graduate from Wilmette, Ill.
- Dean Beckstead, a 1965 graduate from Placida, Fla.
Four board members were elected to their second three-year terms:
- Marc Chorney, a 1981 graduate from Hastings, Minn.
- Steve Burian, a 1990 and 1992 graduate from Grand Forks.
- Cathy Rydell, a 1988 graduate from St. Louis Park, Minn.
- Fernanda Philbrick, a 1994 & 1996 graduate from Phoenix, Ariz.
And Bart Holaday from Colorado Springs, Colo., was elected to a third three-year term.
Friday, June 14, 2013 9:55:00 AM
O’Keefe to Retire as Head of UND Alumni Association & Foundation
Grand Forks (5.8.2013) -- After 11 years as Executive Vice President and CEO of the UND Alumni Association & Foundation, Tim O’Keefe has announced he will retire on March 31, 2014.
“This chapter of my personal and professional life has been a privilege,” O’Keefe said. “I can’t imagine more rewarding work than for an organization and a mission close to my heart and so critical to the public good and future of the University of North Dakota, Grand Forks, our region and my beloved great state of North Dakota.”
O’Keefe, in partnership with UND leadership, led the University through its first major capital campaign. North Dakota Spirit | The Campaign for UND, which ends at Homecoming in October, surpassed its $300 million goal six months early. During the campaign, the number of unique donors to UND jumped from 8,000 a year to more than 13,000, and funds raised annually jumped from $8 million to $45 million.
“Our alumni and friends are special people. The branding of our campaign as ‘North Dakota Spirit’ could not have been more accurate in its representation of the accomplishments, integrity, shared passion and loyalty among our followers for our University and state,” O’Keefe said.
“The University of North Dakota has a great friend in Tim O'Keefe,” UND President Robert Kelley said. “His work as the head of the UND Alumni Association & Foundation has been exemplary, and we are the beneficiaries of that work and leadership, which includes oversight of the $300 million North Dakota Spirit Campaign. Tim’s legacy is already helping to provide an exceptional UND for the future. All of UND joins me in wishing Tim and his wife, Becky, the very best on the next exciting phase of their lives.”
A transition team made up of current and former UND Alumni Association & Foundation Board members as well as UND partners will map out the steps for finding O’Keefe’s replacement.
“Tim has been a visionary leader with an incredible list of accomplishments over his tenure, which has benefited us all,” said Al Royse, UND Foundation Chair. “But while we will certainly miss Tim and his leadership, he has positioned us very well for the future, and we look forward to continuing what he has started. A transition team has been formed, and we are in the process of finding the next great leader for this organization.”
“Tim’s leadership has been transformational for the UND Alumni Association & Foundation,” said Carolyn Becraft, UND Alumni Association Chair. “Under his tenure, the connection to alumni has been greatly strengthened and the endowment has more than tripled. You can see his vision in the Gorecki Alumni Center, the Hopper-Danley Spiritual Center, the President’s residence, and multiple projects currently in the pipeline that will continue to transform the campus. He has built a strong organization that will continue to do great things for UND.”
During O’Keefe’s tenure, UND alumni and friends have established more than 479 new endowments ― investments that provide support for years into the future ― including 262 for student scholarships.
“We only exist for one reason, and that’s students in one form or another,” O’Keefe said. “Today’s students are tomorrow’s alumni. We have always attracted a unique quality of student to UND, and it is the students who have inspired me every day.”
Wednesday, May 08, 2013 3:08:00 PM
Spirit Campaign Passes Goal
North Dakota Spirit | The Campaign for UND has already surpassed its fundraising goal with months to go before the campaign wraps up during Homecoming this fall.
Tim O'Keefe, UND Alumni Association & Foundation executive vice president & CEO, announced today during at the annual State of the UND Alumni Association & Foundation Address that two large donations have pushed the campaign total over the $300 million goal to $300,593,489.
“When we set the goal of $300 million a little over six years ago,” said O’Keefe, “many thought we were beyond overly optimistic. In fact, some even questioned our sanity. We have not only blown through this goal, but we are going to accomplish so much more throughout the balance of this campaign and beyond.”
The objective now, O’Keefe said, is to push to see just how much more can be secured to impact the University’s passionate students, inspirational educators, innovative programs, and extraordinary places.
“I think we have some great projects and programs that will keep us motivated through the end of the campaign,” said DeAnna Carlson Zink, associate executive vice president and chief development officer. “We have a number of alumni and friends that are still planning to get engaged, so we are thrilled to see where we’ll end up in October.”
The impact of the Spirit Campaign was the focus of the State of the UND Alumni Association & Foundation address, which is held as part of UND Spirit Week. UND student and 2011 Spirit Award scholarship winner Adam Swigost gave a heartfelt speech in which he thanked those who’ve given to the campaign.
“I want to thank all of alumni who have ever given the University of North Dakota,” Swigost said. “Without your gifts, my education would not be possible, nor would the education of my classmates. You are what make this University such a rich and fulfilling place.”
Other highlights of the financial report given during the address:
- 575 new funds have been established on campus since the Spirit Campaign started, including 270 scholarship funds.
- 354 new endowments have been funded since the start of the campaign.
- 36,400 alumni and friends have made donations to the Spirit Campaign.
- $43.7 million was committed to the Spirit Campaign by 13,161 investors in Fiscal Year 12.
- In FY12, the Foundation’s assets hit an all-time high of $246 million.
- The endowment balance at the end of FY12 was also a record at $140.3 million.
- Support for student scholarships in FY12 hit $4.8 million, and total support including scholarships and programs was $11.1 million.
Wednesday, March 06, 2013 2:50:00 PM