DEFIANCE, Ohio – Defiance College President Mark Gordon announced today that Wendy Pestrue has been named vice president for institutional advancement at Defiance College. She will oversee the College’s advancement programs, including fundraising, alumni and parent relations, planned giving, corporate and foundation relations, and the annual fund.
Pestrue succeeds Rich Pejeau who will retire June 30 after six years with the College and nearly 40 years in higher education administration.
Pestrue comes to Defiance from Philadelphia where she has been the senior director of development for clinical programs at Temple University School of Medicine. Previously, she was director of grateful patient fundraising with The Ohio State University School of Medicine.
President Gordon said he is “absolutely delighted” that Pestrue will be joining the Defiance College community. “She brings a wealth of different experiences and has proven herself to be innovative and creative as well as being extremely dedicated,” he continued. “I am very much looking forward to working with her as we move our advancement and alumni giving to a new level. I am confident that our existing alumni and donors will be as thrilled as I am that we were able to attract somebody of Wendy’s caliber to Defiance College, and I know she will help us reach out to many new potential donors as well.”
Pestrue commented, “I am thrilled to join Defiance College as it strives to offer world-class opportunities for students. DC's mission to enhance student-centered learning and invaluable educational experiences beyond the classroom was what I found most compelling.
“Remaining focused on what makes Defiance College special in the community and on the national stage has been at the center of the institutional advancement program, and I look forward to working with President Gordon and his team to continue this endeavor.”
At Temple and Ohio State, Pestrue was involved in all aspects of annual fund, planned gift, corporate and foundation fundraising as well as alumni outreach and prospect development. She also served as director of development for the OSU College of Nursing, and prior to that, spent several years in political fundraising. She began her professional career as a teacher with the Houston Learning Academy and Houston Public Schools.
Pestrue earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Houston and a juris doctorate from Capital University Law School.
President Gordon also lauded Pejeau’s successful tenure. “On behalf of Defiance College, we are so grateful to Rich for everything he has done over the past six years. He has done a tremendous job, and we all wish him a wonderful retirement.”
Pestrue will start in her new position June 6 so that she will have approximately four weeks to work with Pejeau prior to his departure.
Defiance College, chartered in 1850, is an independent, liberal arts institution in Northwest Ohio offering more than 40 undergraduate programs of study as well as graduate programs in education and business. Defiance College has received national recognition for its educational experience of service and engagement. The college website is www.defiance.edu.
May 22, 2012