“You Belong” — an initiative launched in December 2017, welcomes all Auburn alumni into the membership of the Auburn Alumni Association.* What began as part of a restructuring, has become an integral part of everything the association does in the mission to provide programming and other opportunities for each and every stakeholder to feel connected to Auburn, no matter how far away from campus they settle.

Going forward, the association will continue to pursue unique, more diverse ways to engage and build relationships with alumni from coast to coast and all around the globe through Auburn Clubs, affiliate groups, travel abroad, athletic events, academic resources and more. Wherever our alumni are, we want them to be connected and involved. Most of all, we want them to know that they always belong!

* The new General Member tier includes all Auburn graduates. However, Annual, Life and Sustaining Life members can take advantage of more extensive membership benefits.

Dear Alumni and Friends,

On behalf of the Auburn Alumni Association, it is with much excitement that I share the 2017-2018 annual report with you. Please join me in celebrating the positive impact that our alumni and friends continue to make on behalf of our university as reflected in this collection of significant outcomes. Our alumni board members, hundreds of Auburn Club volunteers, association members and stakeholders turned their passion for our university into amazing results by engaging our alumni base, developing new partnerships, strengthening existing ones and generating support for Auburn University and its students.

The association is raising the bar on expanding engagement, communication and membership to new heights. Over the past year, more than 126,000 alumni and friends participated in alumni association sponsored events and recorded an impressive 37,000,000 in touchpoints in regular, ongoing dialogue with Auburn alumni and friends through its strong digital and print platforms. Membership continuity and stewardship continue to be a top priority for the association as reflected by the creation of a new and enhanced tiered program. The You Belong campaign successfully launched last year and allowed the association to extend an immediate welcome and instant connection to new graduates. It has also created a more modern approach to
engaging and honoring our contributing members.

This annual report is about you and a reflection of your continued participation, encouragement and passion for our mission. A sincere thank you for belonging and for making a difference!

War Eagle!

Gretchen VanValkenburg
Gretchen Signature

Gretchen VanValkenburg ’86
Vice President for Alumni Affairs &
Executive Director, Auburn Alumni Association
gretchenvan@auburn.edu

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AUBURN CLUBS

In 2017-2018, more than 30,000 alumni participated in events hosted by our more than 95 chartered Auburn Clubs and affiliates. Our Auburn Clubs raised $589,605 in scholarship funds to send students from their respective areas to school at Auburn. Club participation through meetings, AMBUSH events with members of Auburn Athletics, Freshmen Send-offs and game-watching parties offer networking opportunities for alumni of all generations and keeps the Auburn Family engaged and connected to the university.

HOSPITALITY TAILGATES

More than 3,700 alumni and friends visited our Auburn Hospitality Tailgates prior to four home football games in 2017 and two in 2018. These tailgates connected alumni, families and friends back to Auburn by offering visits from Aubie, the War Eagle Girls and Plainsmen, the Auburn Cheerleaders and Tiger Paws. The association partnered with the Auburn Athletics Department, Total Sports Travel and our Auburn Clubs to provide travel, accommodation packages and special events for away games.

SPECIAL EVENTS

In 2017-2018, the Auburn Alumni Association brought 200 alumni home for the Golden Eagles Reunion, celebrating the 50th anniversary and induction of the Class of 1968. More than 400 alumni gathered together for Black Alumni Weekend in September. In March, the Auburn Alumni Association bestowed Lifetime Achievement Awards, the university’s highest honor, to four remarkable alumni. The 2018 honorees were Charles Barkley ’86, Melanie Barstad ’73, Charles Gavin III ’59 and Keith King ’58; Dr. Erica Stringer-Reasor ’04 was recognized as the Young Alumni Achievement Award recipient.

Auburn Magazine Summer 2018 Cover

COMMUNICATIONS

Auburn Magazine received an international award for the issue celebrating the 125th anniversary of Auburn women. The overall campaign was praised by one CASE (Council for the Advancement of Support and Education) judge as being “the most comprehensive campus-wide collaboration” she had ever seen. Auburn Magazine partnered with an alumnus to implement augmented reality, which brings to life several pages of each issue by using the TigerView app. The association engaged our alumni with 37,482,900 touchpoints through our website, social media and email. Botta Getta Social, our social ambassador program, grew to 1,175 ambassadors who connect by sharing their Auburn spirit through content provided by the association.

MEMBERSHIP

The association is committed to engaging all alumni and friends through an inclusive membership program, and all graduates are welcomed as General Members of the Auburn Alumni Association. Association board members and volunteers personally handed each graduate a specially designed alumni pin as they exited the stage at commencement. More than 42,000 graduates, alumni and friends support Auburn through Annual or Life membership contributions. Contributions are 90% tax deductible and count toward Auburn’s alumni participation rate, which factors into Auburn University’s national rankings. Contributing members receive upgraded benefits including an official membership packet with car decal, lapel pin, personalized membership card and the quarterly Auburn Magazine.

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ALUMNI PROFESSORSHIPS

Up to 25 five-year, non-renewable Alumni Professorships are sponsored by the Auburn Alumni Association, with funds endowed from annual giving. Faculty members are nominated by their deans and chosen on the basis of research, publishing and teaching.

DENNIS DEVRIES
Fisheries, Aquaculture and Aquatic Science
College of Agriculture

PETER HASTIE
Kinesiology
School of Kinesiology/College of Education

YAOQI ZHANG
Forestry and Wildlife Sciences
College of Forestry & Wildlife Sciences

JOHN RAPP
Psychology
College of Liberal Arts

BENSON AKINGBEMI
Anatomy, Physiology and Pharmacology
College of Veterinary Medicine

THE UNDERGRADUATE TEACHING EXCELLENCE AWARD

Up to three Undergraduate Teaching Excellence Awards are given to teachers who are nominated by students, alumni and colleagues in honor of their quality of teaching, knowledge of subject, interest in and availability to students, the impact the teacher had on the nominator’s personal educational experience and his or her influence within the Auburn community.

MELANIE DUFFEY
College of Human Sciences

MATT HALL
College of Architecture, Design & Construction

JAMES LONG
School of Accountancy/Harbert College of Business

THE DISTINGUISHED GRADUATE FACULTY LECTURESHIP

Jointly sponsored by the Auburn Alumni Association and the Auburn University Graduate School, the Distinguished Graduate Faculty Lectureship carries a $2,000 award from the association and is chosen by the Graduate Faculty Council.

REX DUNHAM
Fisheries, Aquaculture and Aquatic Sciences
College of Agriculture

students

SCHOLARSHIPS

This year, the Auburn Club Scholarship program and the Auburn Alumni Association Endowment awarded 340 scholarships to students who were welcomed to campus for the 2018-2019 school year. Other fundraising programs the association supports to encourage scholarship funds include the Alumni Walk, which was completed in 2018, and the Circle of Excellence, which was established to help increase our endowment that is used to fund competitive scholarships to children of the association’s life members. Through the efforts of the Auburn Alumni Association $970,000 was generated to fund Auburn University student scholarships.


In 2017-18, 35 incoming freshmen or transfers were awarded scholarships as part of our Million Dollar Match program that raised over $1,250,000 for our endowment. When the endowment reaches maturity, the match program will fund a minimum of 67 new endowments.

STUDENT ALUMNI ASSOCIATION

Students enrolled at Auburn can belong to the Student Alumni Association, the largest student organization on campus. Averaging 2,300 members annually, the Student Alumni Association is led by a 30-member Student Alumni Board that creates events and opportunities for members to interact with each other as well as network with Auburn University alumni and friends.  The group works to raise funds for their student scholarship, which was awarded to two Student Alumni Association members in 2018. In the spring, members of the Auburn Alumni Association Board of Directors participated in a Mentorship Dinner to give members of the Student Alumni Board an opportunity to network and gain insight on the professional fields of the association board.

SENIOR SEND-OFF

“Where you belong” was the theme of the 2018 Senior Send-off held in April. The association celebrated 216 attendees who were scheduled to graduate by the end of the year. Students networked with vendors, gathered information on Auburn Clubs, career options, graduate school preparation, registered for door prizes and had the opportunity to make a Commemorative Medallion gift. Aubie and the Southeastern Raptor Center also joined in on the fun.

GET IT TOGETHER

Volunteers help graduates with caps and gowns at the association’s Get It Together prior to every commencement. From steaming gowns to fixing zippers, offering bandaids and adjusting graduate hoods, our team makes sure every graduate is looking their best when they walk across the stage.

COMMEMORATIVE MEDALLIONS

The Commemorative Medallion program was created to encourage graduating seniors to make their first financial contribution to Auburn as a young alumna/alumnus. Their gift (a minimum donation of their graduation year, i.e. $20.18) can be designated to any AU school/college, department or program the giver chooses. Donors receive a medallion to wear at graduation and to keep forever. Since its inception in December 2015, more than 1,300 Commemorative Medallion contributions have been made raising more than $28,000.

campus

TIGER GIVING DAY

The Auburn Alumni Association offered two projects as part of the 2018 Tiger Giving Day. The Student Alumni Association exceeded their goal and raised $4,000 from 60 donors to fully fund the Student Alumni Association Scholarship Endowment. The second project involved Auburn Clubs around the country raising money for future generations of Auburn students. More than 450 donors contributed to 69 club scholarships and 26 Auburn Clubs participated by contributing $92,896, establishing four new club endowments and two new annual scholarships. Tiger Giving Day resulted in a $236,657 impact to the Auburn Club Scholarships program.

CAMPAIGN SUPPORT

The Auburn Alumni Association was proud to participate in the university’s $1B Because This is Auburn: A Campaign for Auburn University. Partnering with our Auburn Clubs, scholarship programs and including all alumni through communications, the association contributed $11,816,603, far exceeding our initial $9.4 million goal. Over all, the campaign raised $1,202,549,730 for Auburn University.

STUDENT PARTNERSHIPS

The association supported the Auburn Student Veterans Association Gala, featuring SSG Travis Mills, United States Army (ret), who became a quadruple amputee in Afghanistan in 2012. Among many other programs and events, the association participated in campus-wide activities celebrating the 75th anniversary of The Auburn Creed and continued the partnership with the Office of Student Conduct in their annual Be the Creed Week and SGA’s Ring Night and Ring Ceremonies.

THIS IS AUBURN SPEAKER SERIES

The Alumni Engagement Group was established in 2017 as a platform for representatives from across campus to work together to collaborate and develop mutually beneficial partnerships and broad-spectrum alumni engagement. The group currently has 58 members.

community

MILITARY APPRECIATION

More than 5,000 known alumni/friends around the world who have served or are currently serving in the United States Armed Forces were invited to attend the Auburn Alumni Association Military Appreciation Reception prior to Military Appreciation Day. The association also partnered with Auburn High School for a Welcome Home Ceremony for veterans of the Vietnam War. Medal of Honor recipients Major General (ret) James Livingston ’62 and CSM Bennie Adkins helped students honor more than 300 veterans of the Vietnam War.

WAR EAGLE TRAVELERS

With a wide array of options, more than 248 alumni and friends traveled together around the world on more than 51 trips offered by our War Eagle Travelers program. From the South Pacific to the Swiss Alps to the California Wine Country, the War Eagle Travelers program offered something — or somewhere — for everybody.

AUBURN AT WORK

The association launched Auburn at Work events as an opportunity to engage alumni and friends in their workplace, create purposeful content to strengthen the Auburn community and highlight Auburn’s commitment to producing innovative alumni. In 2017-18, events were held at Georgia Pacific and Delta Airlines.

Dear Alumni and Friends,

War Eagle! The slogan for our current Auburn Alumni Association membership campaign is “You Belong.” That is a perfect idea on which to base this campaign. It certainly applies to every member of the Auburn family.

As a student, you belonged. You felt like you belonged when you came to visit Auburn as a high school student. You could picture yourself walking down the concourse and going to class in Haley Center. You applied because it felt almost like “home” and you were comfortable here. You loved your time here because it became “home” to you. You joined various clubs and organizations during your undergraduate or graduate years because you found your niche, your interests, your friends, your identity. You were a part of these groups…and you belonged.

As an alumnus, you still belong. You belong to your local Auburn club. These clubs need your volunteer time to promote the Auburn spirit and your support for student scholarships. You belong in the stands cheering for our Tigers — whether at Jordan-Hare, in Auburn Arena, on the baseball or softball diamonds, at the track, or at the horse ring. Your support helps our athletes compete and win. You will always belong in the school/college you studied and in the organizations you were a part of. You desire for those disciplines to continue to be as great as they can be and to keep attracting top students who will keep the Auburn academic legacy strong.

And, last, but certainly not least, you belong in the Auburn Alumni Association. We need you as a contributing or life member because your participation helps us continue to strengthen the relationships between Auburn men and women. In this report you will see evidence of the impact the association can have on the alumni community and all across the university.

Auburn means “family,” and we are all part of our ever-growing Auburn family. You belong in this family — and there will always be a place for you at our table. Come home to Auburn — visit frequently. Stay connected. Stay engaged. Auburn needs you. YOU BELONG, and we are counting on you to stay true to the family.

I believe in Auburn and love it — and I know you do, too.

War Eagle!

Beau-Byrd photo
beau byrd small

Beau Byrd ’89
President, Auburn Alumni Association
bbyrd@bradley.com

MS. DION M. AVIKI ’04

MRS. SUSAN K. BLACK ’77

MRS. SHIRLEY F. BOULWARE ’91

MR. WILLIAM C. “BEAU” BYRD II ’89
President

MR. J. BENJAMIN “BEN” CHAPPELL ’03

MR. ROBERT “ROB” M. CRABTREE ’86

MRS. MICHELLE M. GRANBERRY ’92
Treasurer

DR. CHARLES D. HART JR. ’85

MRS. LUANNE L. HART ’80

MR. M. VAN HENLEY ’80
Vice President

MRS. LAURA C. KEZAR ’08

MR. DOUGLAS E. KILTON ’82

MR. ELON W. MADDOX, JR. ’73

MRS. ANGELA S. MITCHELL ’85

MR. JEFFREY B. MOORE ’88

MRS. JENNIFER G. MOORE ’85

MR. KELLEY P. MOSSBURG ’77

MR. MICHAEL C. ROGERS, JR. ’87

MR. DEWAYNE T. SCOTT ’95

EX-OFFICIO
MR. WILLIAM JACKSON “JACK” FITE ’85
DR. STEVEN LEATH
DR. DONALD “DON” L. LARGE JR. ’75
MR. MICHAEL A. MCLAIN ’72
MS. MAKENZIE ROGERS
MS. JENNIFER L. STEPHENS
MRS. GRETCHEN VANVALKENBURG ’86

MISSION

The Auburn Alumni Association is dedicated to
enhancing the engagement and connection of
all Auburn University alumni and friends.

VISION

To advance Auburn University by engaging our
global community and cultivating their passion
for and loyalty to the university.