Gail Connerley of Richmond, Indiana, has been named the new executive director of institutional advancement at Bethany Theological Seminary, to begin November 12, 2018. She comes to Bethany from Earlham College, where she has worked in advancement for sixteen years.
Since 2016 Connerley has held the position of senior director of annual giving at Earlham, in which she provided oversight for implementation and evaluation of all annual fund strategies. She directed stewardship and solicitation of potential lead donors to the annual fund, managed a portfolio of annual fund and major gift prospects, and helped generate the largest annual fund total in the college’s history in fiscal 2017-18.
Between 2002 and 2016, Connerley held the positions of assistant director and senior director of alumni relations at Earlham, planning and staffing regional events nationwide to promote the college’s strategic goals and fund-raising priorities. Project leadership included Homecoming and Reunion Weekend, the Alumni Council and its activities, alumni communication, and collaboration with development staff to secure a challenge gift and launch the alumni giving challenge in Earlham’s recent capital campaign.
As executive director of institutional advancement at Bethany, Connerley will oversee the operations of the Advancement Department, the Seminary’s marketing and communications plan, the building of relationships with current and prospective constituents, and the securing of charitable gifts to ensure the operation of the Seminary. Specific responsibilities include major, planned, and annual gift strategies; oversight of alumni relations; and representing Bethany at Church of the Brethren and other organizational events.
Connerley received her BA from Wilmington (Ohio) College in 2002 and is a graduate of the Institute for Creative Leadership. She has presented for the Association of Fundraising Professionals and the Quaker Fundraisers Gathering Planning Committee and has had leadership roles with several local civic organizations.
Sara Brann, accounting specialist, will be retiring on October 31, 2018, after nearly seventeen years in business services at Bethany. She was hired in the position of accounting assistant in August 2001, working for both Bethany and Earlham School of Religion, then began as a student services associate for Bethany in 2003 after the schools divided business office operations. In 2006 Brann was promoted to accounting specialist. Throughout her tenure she has had responsibilities in accounts payable, financial reporting, payroll, insurance records, student accounts, financial aid, and building maintenance oversight, and supply orders.
On October 15, 2018, Elena Jones of Richmond, Indiana, joined the Bethany staff as accounting assistant. Jones has more than ten years’ experience in financial services, previously working for the City of Richmond Employee Credit Union as an assistant manager and teller. She has also worked in accounts payable and receivable for the City of Richmond Controller’s Office and as a sales representative for Western and Southern Financial Group in Richmond.
A native Russian speaker, Jones earned an MA in education and linguistics from the Herzen State Pedagogical University of Russia in St. Petersburg. During her earlier career in St. Petersburg, she translated texts and books and served as an interpreter in church and library settings. She has also done translation and transcription for radio and served as an instructor of Russian for American speakers.
Ryan Frame is being promoted to director of seminary computer services for both Bethany and the Earlham School of Religion. Frame was hired as computing services specialist for both schools in August 2014, having previously been the proprietor of an IT service and consulting company. In addition to more emphasis on strategic work and planning for the seminaries’ technology needs, Frame’s new responsibilities include oversight of the network infrastructure and servers.
Lily Ballenger of Cambridge City, Indiana, began her duties in the new position of business service assistant at Bethany in August 2018. In addition to serving as Bethany’s receptionist, she assists with accounts receivable, manages Brethren House reservations, and maintains room reservations for the Bethany Center.
Ballenger previously worked as the receptionist for Gillam & Zetzl, Inc., public accountants. She has supervisory and management experience in animal boarding and restaurant settings and also served as an intern and volunteer for Richmond Civic Theater and Stage One Youth Theater.