UMSL taps Ryan McDannold to serve as associate vice chancellor for development

Ryan McDannold

New Associate Vice Chancellor for Development Ryan McDannold has more than 17 years of experience leading the strategic growth of private philanthropic support for nonprofit and higher education organizations. (Photo by Derik Holtmann)

Ryan McDannold has assumed his new position as the associate vice chancellor for development at the University of Missouri–St. Louis.

McDannold was chosen for the role after a nationwide search, and his first day is today. He brings more than 17 years of experience leading the strategic growth of private philanthropic support for nonprofit and higher education organizations, including the past 4½ years as the assistant vice president of the SSM Health Foundation-St. Louis.

“Ryan has tremendous development leadership and campaign experience and will bring a strong foundation of best practice philanthropy programs, team building and volunteer collaboration to this role,” said Lisa Capone, UMSL’s vice chancellor for advancement. “We are so pleased to have Ryan join the UMSL team, especially during our 60th anniversary celebration, as we are strongly and positively engaging with so many of our external constituencies in the St. Louis region, state and nation.”

McDannold, who will serve as UMSL’s chief development officer, successfully completed a scheduled six-year $25.5 million campaign in just four years while at the SSM Health Foundation-St. Louis. The organization averaged $6.5 million annually during that period, which represented an increase of 160% in average annual fundraising production.

At UMSL, he will help set the strategy for the Office of Development within University Advancement as it works with leaders across campus to engage alumni and the broader community to realize the university’s goals to increase access to higher education and spur equitable economic development in the St. Louis region and state through private investments.

“I think the role of Advancement is really making connections and building relationships,” McDannold said. “That can be from the philanthropic perspective. Obviously, we want to build relationships and encourage people to invest in UMSL and invest in the transformation that’s taking place. But we also want to promote what’s happening at UMSL and get other decision-makers, other leaders, other community members engaged and make them part of the solution and be a part of the overall process for elevating the St. Louis region.”

A Missouri native, McDannold said he was attracted to the unique role UMSL plays in the region as a leader in workforce development and research aimed at addressing community challenges. He was also excited about the changes taking place across campus that are positioning the university to continue delivering on its mission to serve the St. Louis region into the future.

McDannold already had some familiarity with UMSL, having spent time at two other universities in the University of Missouri System in his career. He served as an executive leader for advancement in both the Trulaske College of Business and the College of Arts and Sciences at the University of Missouri–Columbia, where he specialized in major, principal and planned giving enhancement for the successful $1.4B Mizzou – Our Time To Lead Campaign. Earlier in his career, he spent two years as a development specialist for athletics at the University of Missouri–Kansas City.

He was also the director of major and planned gifts for Veterans of Foreign Wars, headquartered in Kansas City, and he spent four years as the assistant athletics director for development at Columbia College.

McDannold began his career by serving on active duty as a combat medic in the Navy’s 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit and was awarded three Naval Letters of Recommendation, two Naval Letters of Commendation, the Navy Good Conduct Medal, a Meritorious Unit Commendation and the National Defense Service Medal during his service.

After honorable separation from the Navy, McDannold earned a bachelor’s degree from MU and later completed his MBA at Florida Atlantic University in 2008. He is a Certified Fund Raising Executive (CFRE) and completed the Charted Advisor in Philanthropy (CAP®) credential through the American College of Financial Services.


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