R. Daniel Shephard, an 18-year veteran of development roles with theatre companies and educational institutions, has been named associate vice president for development at Mary Baldwin University.
“I am eager to join a fundraising team that will further President [Pamela] Fox’s vision for the college,” said Shephard, a native of Vinton, Virginia, in the Roanoke Valley. Shephard said his stage training taught him two skills that carry into the development office: how to be fully present in a conversation and how to listen effectively.
Shephard started his undergraduate education with dreams of being an actor and he earned his bachelor’s degree in theatre at North Carolina Wesleyan College. After serving in the United States Army and earning a Master of Fine Arts in theatre management from Virginia Tech, he discovered a different way to contribute to the success of theatre companies – first as a business manager and then as a fund raising professional. He made the transition to educational fund raising at The Linsly School, a small college preparatory school in Wheeling, West Virginia. He has since worked as the director of planned giving at Florida State University and, most recently, as the director of development at the Pamplin College of Business, Virginia Tech.
“Dan Shephard understands philanthropy and what motivates people to support institutions like Mary Baldwin,” said Thomas E. Piazze Jr., Mary Baldwin’s vice president for institutional advancement. “He also knows how to effectively teach and mentor those with whom he works.”