PHILADELPHIA, PA .-
The Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts
(PAFA) announces the appointment of Melissa A. DeRuiter as its new Executive Vice President of Development effective December 1, 2010. She holds Bachelor of Arts degrees in Art History and French from Dickinson College
. With more than 15 years of professional fundraising experience, she will bring her expertise to the establishment of the institution's fundraising plan, implementing programs for philanthropic support, and leading PAFA's staff of development professionals.
DeRuiter says, "I am thrilled to assume the position of Executive Vice President of Development at PAFA, and to have the opportunity to work with its mission to bring together artists with the public through its Museum and School. I am excited to expand the fundraising program and confident that we will be successful at achieving the many exciting goals laid out by the Academy's new strategic plan."
Most recently as Senior Director of Development at Pennsylvania Horticultural Society (PHS), DeRuiter helped establish a highly successful major gifts program, which has over 40 members contributing $10,000 or more. In December 2007, she helped PHS launch the first endowment campaign in the organization's history, which raised $9.3 million towards its $12.1 million goal, and helped increase annual giving from individuals by 21%.
Prior to joining PHS, DeRuiter was Assistant Director of Development and Grants Writer at Pennsylvania Ballet. There she contributed to doubling their leadership giving society and assisted in launching the Ballet's $10 million capital campaign for the Company's new building, repertoire, and programs.
DeRuiter is not new to PAFA as her career began as Event Coordinator of the USArtists: American Fine Art Show and Sale and Director of Membership and Annual Giving.
David R. Brigham, PAFA President and CEO said, "We are fortunate to have found a Development professional with such outstanding vision and energy. Her knowledge of PAFA and the community, coupled with her dynamic personality, will make an effective leader of our development efforts. We are delighted to welcome Melissa back."