Curt Simic is widely recognized as a national leader in fundraising for higher education, management of foundations, and foundation-institution relationships. He has more than 40 years’ experience in all areas of development and alumni and external relations, at both public and private institutions of higher education.
As president of Indiana University Foundation from 1988 to 2008, Mr. Simic was the chief development officer for Indiana University, responsible for oversight of all fundraising in a multi-campus development operation with centralized and decentralized functions; investment of the endowment; and development-related administrative services and infrastructure.
Under his leadership, fundraising for IU grew from $70 million a year from 60,000 donors to more than $270 million from over 120,000 donors. Since 1990, IU has ranked almost every year in the top 20, or top 2%, of colleges and universities in the nation in total voluntary support, the combined total of gift and non-governmental grant funds received by an institution in any given year.
The endowment has grown from approximately $214 million to $1.6 billion. IU consistently ranks in the top 15 among public universities in the U.S. in the market value of its endowment.
Beginning his career at IUF as director of the annual fund and of the Student Foundation, Mr. Simic also served Yale University and the universities of Tennessee, Alabama, Oregon, and California-Berkeley, where he directed all fundraising efforts for the campus, including the largest fundraising campaign ever conducted at a public university at that time.
The recipient of many awards and honors, he is a presenter and author on development topics and has been an advisor and consultant to many colleges, universities, and non-profit organizations. He has authored book chapters, articles, and brochures about the relationship between foundations and their educational institutions, the fundraising responsibilities of foundation and of institutional governing board members, faculty relations, and funding mechanisms for foundations.
Curtis enjoys his current professional affiliations and service to:
- Finish Line Youth Foundation
- IU Art Museum
- Indiana State Museum Board of Directors
- Director, Western Golf Association
- Indiana Golf Foundation, Board of Directors
His many former affiliations include:
- President Emeritus, Indiana University Foundation
- Dean of Faculty and faculty member, Big Ten Fund Raisers Institute
- Board of Governors, Indiana University Center on Philanthropy
- Board of Directors, National Art Museum of Sport
- Institutionally Related Foundations Planning Committee, Association of Governing Boards of Universities and Colleges (AGB)
- National Committee for Institutionally Related Foundations, Council for the Advancement and Support of Education (CASE)
- National Board of Trustees, Council for the Advancement and Support of Education (CASE)
- Boards in Districts III, V, and VIII, Council for the Advancement and Support of Education
- Board of Directors, Catholic Community Foundation, Archdiocese of Indianapolis
- Wyman Foundation Board of Directors