New Unit: Strategic Initiatives, Research and Innovation (SIRI)

A recently created UO fundraising team will focus on research, innovation and strategic initiatives. Reporting jointly to the Office of the Vice President for Research and Innovation and University Advancement, the Strategic Initiatives, Research and Innovation (SIRI) team is led by Matt Hutter, senior director of development, research, innovation and strategic initiatives. Hutter is also responsible for cultivating key corporate partners for the UO.

The SIRI team leads and coordinates private giving efforts in support of strategic research initiatives — central (non‐unit‐based) priorities designed to have a transformational effect on the UO that will benefit multiple units and individuals. Within the Office of Advancement, SIRI operates as a collaborative partner with unit‐based development teams seeking support from private foundations, engaging corporate partners and aligning unit‐based donor opportunities with centralized priorities. Within the Office of the Vice President for Research and Innovation, SIRI functions as the lead fundraising unit.

In a memo to UO deans and UO Provost and Senior Vice President Scott Coltrane, Vice President for Research and Innovation David Conover and Senior Associate Vice President for Development Paul Elstone, outlined the goals of the unit:

“Aligning private donor, foundation and corporate support to achieve, large, centrally coordinated research priorities is becoming a more commonplace prerequisite for success on campuses across the country,” the memo read. “Our intention is to have a team that will enable us to continue to identify and secure significant philanthropic resources to support research across the university.”

SIRI includes David Frazee Johnson, director of foundation relations, and Michele Kuhnle, senior associate director of development. Frazee Johnson will lead all strategy development for private foundations, campus‐wide — with an enhanced focus on strategic initiatives — and will work collaboratively with Kuhnle, who will be taking on additional foundation relation duties. Kuhnle will also manage her own individual gift portfolio.