Seth Walker named VP of University Advancement and executive director of GCSU Foundation
G eorgia College & State University welcomes Seth Walker as the new vice president for University Advancement and executive director of the GCSU Foundation Inc. He began his position Dec. 1, 2023.
Walker oversees the Foundation and leads all University Advancement professionals including Alumni Relations and Advancement Services.
He chose Georgia College because he’s impressed with its history and the excitement around the Imagine 2030 Strategic Plan.
“Georgia College has a unique story within the University System of Georgia,” he said. “We have a great advancement and alumni team that will be able to maximize our collective impact toward gaining more resources for GCSU’s students, faculty and staff.”
Walker most recently served as vice chancellor for Advancement and CEO of the Foundation at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville (SIUE). There, he doubled the fundraising output, resulting in the highest-fundraising year in the university’s history.
“We engaged the entire campus community around fundraising,” Walker said. “It’s important to also invest in our advancement team, so they’re empowered to work with donors to create new philanthropic opportunities.”
The qualitative and quantitative metric system he used with development officers, deans and department chairs was effective in raising private funds. This system enables individuals to know how they're tracking and shows them how to work strategically toward their goals.
Walker’s experience working at the Georgia Aquarium and United Way also gave him insight into corporate fundraising. It helped him understand what corporate leaders look for when they're making a philanthropic investment.
“It taught me how we can tailor our investment to match that of a corporation,” Walker said. “Also, corporations are really just made up of people. So, the importance of individual relationships with people in corporations are what matter. This is what we’re trying to do at Georgia College.”
Walker also already has experience within the University System of Georgia. At Kennesaw State University, he was senior director of Development over the College of Business, College of Continuing Education, the Graduate College and Global Affairs.
“My role prepared me to understand the depths of the University System of Georgia and how we operate within the system,” he said. “We also focused on non-alumni donors and had a young alumni base.”
At Georgia Southern University, Walker served as director of Corporate Relations for the Atlanta region, leading its corporate efforts.
“I developed an understanding of the importance of career services to the corporate development model, and how fundraising and career services interact to support students,” he said.
In his spare time, Walker enjoys being involved in the community, fishing, playing golf, gardening and doing activities with his six-year-old son, Andy, who is especially happy about the move.
“He’s looking forward to being back,” Walker said, “close to his friends and happy to be in the Milledgeville area.”
Walker and his wife, Anna, just welcomed a new baby on Dec. 10, 2023. Both are Georgia natives. Walker is originally from Savannah but graduated from high school in Newnan, and his wife from Duluth. His family is enthusiastic about being back in Georgia near relatives.
“Seth Walker is prepared to move University Advancement in a strategic direction using our Imagine 2030 Strategic Plan as a strong, guiding force,” said Georgia College & State University President Cathy Cox. “His fully staffed advancement team is capable of and ready to follow his ambitious lead, which will take GCSU to new heights in the years to come.”