UNC-CH hires top fundraiser

jstancill@newsobserver.comSeptember 26, 2013 

— A UNC-Chapel Hill alumnus will lead the next big-dollar campaign at the university as its chief fundraiser.

On Thursday, David Routh, 53, of Chapel Hill was named vice chancellor for development at the university. Currently a managing director for U.S. Trust/Bank of America Private Wealth Management in Raleigh, Routh will start the job Oct. 14 at an annual salary of $395,000 with the potential for bonuses.

He immediately succeeds Julia Grumbles, who served a year as interim vice chancellor for development after the forced departure of Matt Kupec, the former Tar Heel quarterback and top fundraiser. Kupec resigned last year following a scandal in which he had spent $17,000 in university money on personal trips with his girlfriend, Tami Hansbrough, also a UNC-CH fundraiser and the mother of former Tar Heel basketball star Tyler Hansbrough.

Routh’s appointment was approved by the Board of Trustees and announced by Chancellor Carol Folt on Thursday.

“He has an extensive background in leadership and experience in fundraising, collaboration,” Folt said of Routh, “and he shares also a passion and aspiration for Carolina that I think will be serving us all extremely well as we go forward.”

Routh met with the university’s development staff on familiar turf Thursday. He was director of gift planning at the university from 2006 to 2009 during the last major fundraising campaign that raised $2.38 billion. He’s also vice chairman of the UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center’s board of visitors and leads its capital campaign planning committee.

“It’s a very powerful thing to think about being in this role at your alma mater,” Routh said in an interview.

He said he would get to work with Folt next month to work on the details of the next big private fundraising campaign.

“It’s never been any more important than today and for the future,” Routh said. “Budget challenges are going on all around the country, and we’re no different.”

Raising money after the economic downturn is a bit more difficult, Routh said, but giving to the university has been strong even during the transition between chancellors and vice chancellors.

“There’s a very broad, very deep, very committed group of supporters at this university,” he said. “I think everybody feels confident that if we do our job right and do a good job identifying priorities for this next campaign, that the loyal Carolina donors will continue to be very, very generous.”

A native of Greensboro, Routh earned undergraduate degrees in economics and religious studies. He, his wife and three daughters all attended the university during a national basketball championship season.

He graduated in 1982, he said, “when Michael Jordan made the shot.”

Stancill: 919-829-4559

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