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Tom Chaves accepts leadership position at Saint Joseph's University

Tuesday, September 12, 2017  
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Thomas Chaves, Immediate Past AASP President, has made a career of advancement services. He recently moved from Lehigh University to Saint Joseph’s University. Chaves served more than nine years at Lehigh, so the move was not effortless by any means. In his new role as Associate Vice President for Advancement Operations, Chaves is stretching his skills with oversight for both traditional services responsibilities and the less traditional -- marketing, events and annual giving. “The more the areas are integrated and aligned the better the operations unit can be for advancement,” explains Chaves with confidence that he has the background for the challenge.

In part, he attributes his readiness for the position to AASP. Best practices and a community of professionals are within reach. AASP also continuously immerses it members in the profession’s trends and challenges.

As the opportunity presented itself, people in the industry I met through AASP were there for me. They were able to run the pros and cons of the position and equally important help me understand how a move like this would be perceived from a career perspective. I was going to a smaller, lower volume institution,” says Chaves.

It gives him the comfort and confidence to hear from people that had been through similar moves and stepped into similar scenarios. As he describes it, “the advising that I was getting was the best available.”

When asked if his new position will still leave room for AASP involvement, Chaves believes that individuals in senior leadership need networks of peers. He hopes to bring more of that level of content to the organization, thus, covering the true breadth of advancement services. He is also passionate about inspiring and invigorating others to be in professions they truly enjoy. He endorses the healthy practice of exploring one’s options. Advancement services has many niches, AASP supports everyone that is looking to enhance their career.

Spotlight by Sharon Lonthair, Membership Committee member