Christine M. Pina has been named vice president for institutional advancement at the University of Hartford. Pina is currently director of major gifts at Wesleyan University in Middletown, Conn. She will assume her new duties at the University of Hartford on November 28, said University President Walter Harrison.
“I am delighted we have been able to attract a person of Christine’s experience, talent, and energy to the University,” said President Harrison. “Her vision and values are perfect for the University, and—more than that—she is a really great person. I look forward to working with her in leading the University.”
As vice president for institutional advancement, Pina will be responsible for energizing the University of Hartford’s fundraising, development, and alumni relations efforts.
“I am truly delighted to lead the University of Hartford’s effort to further develop a culture of philanthropic support through greater engagement of alumni, students, parents and friends," said Pina. "I’m especially eager to work with the great people across the University to find innovative ways to raise vital endowment and current-use dollars to help strengthen the university’s commitment to its dynamic students and faculty.”
Pina is a graduate of Wesleyan University, where she earned a bachelor’s degree in African-American studies. She also has a master’s in education in higher education administration from the Harvard Graduate School of Education. She joined the Office of University Relations at Wesleyan as a development officer in 2004, helping to close Wesleyan’s $281 million capital campaign in 2005. Promoted to director of major gifts in 2006, she currently oversees the major gifts, planned giving and prospect management, and development research teams, while managing a portfolio of 120 high-level donors. Notable recent fundraising achievements include an endowed chair for Wesleyan’s College of the Environment and several seven-figure endowment gifts in support of financial aid.
Pina began her career as a health-care management consultant then transitioned into the field of education. In 1992, she joined the Office of Admission at Dartmouth College in Hanover N.H., and subsequently became the associate director of admission and director of minority recruitment. After completing her graduate studies at Harvard, she joined the development office at Madeira School, an all-girls’ boarding-day school in McLean, Va., where she established the first major gifts program in anticipation of a $60 million capital campaign for building and endowment support. After leaving Madeira, she continued to live in Virginia and worked as a remotely based gift officer for St. Paul’s School in Concord, N.H., where she focused on securing major gifts for the school’s endowment and construction of a $25 million athletic facility.
Pina and her husband, Alex D. Smith, live in West Hartford, Conn., with their seven-year-old son, Arthur. They are parishioners at St. James’s Episcopal Church in West Hartford, where Pina has served as a senior warden and vestry member. She is an appointed member of the Harvard Graduate School of Education Alumni Council; volunteers with A Hand Up, Inc., which works to move families in the Greater Hartford area from homelessness to independent living; and is vice president of the Greater Hartford Chapter of Jack and Jill of America, Inc.