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Clark Appoints Vice President for University Advancement

To the Clark Community,

I write to share news of the appointment of a new vice president for university advancement. Effective January 17, 2023, Joe Manok will join Clark University to bring exciting new leadership to our work in development and alumni relations. Joe is a truly outstanding development professional with decades of experience in fundraising, alumni and friends engagement, partnerships, and overall institutional strategy. He will be an exceptional addition to our senior leadership team and to our community and will be a strong collaborator across the University.

Joe is joining us at a critical time as we work toward fulfilling our strategic framework and pursuing heightened institutional aspirations, positioning Clark even more prominently as the institution of distinction that it is. With ambitious plans and bold projects already underway, it is more important than ever that we have the necessary resources to invest in our people, programs, and physical plant. As our chief development officer, Joe will ensure that we attract the highest level of support from those who come to understand and appreciate the value of a Clark education, and our impact around the world. In addition to enhancing overall giving to the University, Joe will be responsible for deepening alumni engagement and strengthening relationships with individuals and organizations that can contribute to our success as a university. He brings to Clark a proven track record of high-level fundraising, extensive and successful campaign management experience, and demonstrated strength in motivating, mentoring, and effectively building high-performing teams.

Since 2014, Joe has held senior-level positions in the Office of Resource Development at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) — currently serving as senior director of philanthropic partnerships and previously as director of global initiatives. At MIT, Joe has managed the principal giving operations in addition to principal giving officers who focus on the United States, the Middle East, and Europe. He has had many significant accomplishments, including successfully closing multiple seven- and eight-figure gifts as part of MIT’s $6.28 billion Campaign for a Better World. Joe has been recognized by the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) with the Rising Star Award for his consistently high level of professional achievement and commitment to the advancement profession.

Before joining MIT, Joe was a fast-rising leader within the Office of Development at the American University of Beirut (AUB), serving as associate director of development for major gifts and advancement services, and the assistant director for development services. He had broad responsibilities at AUB, including managing a portfolio in North America; directing major, principal, and planned giving; and overseeing many elements of alumni programming. Joe had substantial responsibility in planning and successfully executing the silent phase of AUB’s $650 million capital campaign. He personally re-engaged hundreds of disengaged alumni and helped AUB launch its first online alumni community. In 2007, AUB honored Joe with the President’s Service Excellence Award.

Significantly, Joe has motivated donors to endow more than 25 funds to support students and faculty, leaving an impressive legacy at MIT and AUB.

In addition to all that Joe has accomplished as a front-line fundraiser, development strategist, and manager, he also has demonstrated a firm commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion — helping MIT build and mentor one of the most diverse teams at the institution and, at AUB, leading a process to make university policies more gender inclusive.

Joe earned his bachelor of science degree in computer science from AUB and is working toward his master of science in nonprofit management from Northeastern University. He is a certified fundraising executive through CFRE International and completed an executive certification in strategy and innovation at MIT’s Sloan School of Management. He is a frequent speaker at national higher education conferences and has published extensively referenced research on trends in principal giving, global philanthropy, and transformational gift conversions.

I am grateful to the many colleagues listed below who participated in our search to identify the best possible candidate. I am also enormously grateful to Jonathan Kappel for serving as interim vice president for university advancement. He has done a terrific job since July not just to maintain our fundraising operations but in fact advance the work with great alacrity and a heightened sense of ambition and promise.

After the New Year, we will have a gathering to introduce Joe to our campus community and to recognize Jonathan for his strong leadership during this transition. Until then, please join me in welcoming Joe to Clark University.


David Fithian ’87

Thank you to the following individuals who participated in various stages of the search:

Charles Agosta, George Bacher, Jonathan Burton, David Chearo, Paul Cotnoir, Trish Cronin, Roy DiNicola, Karen Doherty, Alan Eisner, Nicole Forgit, Margo Foreman, Jill Friedman, Jennifer Hitt, Kendall Isaac, Esther Jones, Jonathan Kappel, Kamala Kiem, Gary Labovich, John LaBrie, Danielle Manning, Deborah Martin, Paul Milionis, Erica Penn, Tamar Podell, Mary Richardson, Mary Jane Rein, Robin Rivera, Sebastián Royo, Wendi Trilling, and Kristina Wilson.