George Eastman Circle Leadership Council

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Purpose and Overview

George Eastman Circle Leadership Councils are comprised of volunteer leaders who actively strengthen the Circle’s presence in key regions around the country. Council members promote high-end unrestricted leadership annual giving to an identified group of the University’s closest alumni, friends and parents and serve as outstanding alumni ambassadors, an example of the philanthropy and leadership that makes the University of Rochester “ever better”. Councils are comprised of 10-20 individuals, including a Chair and/or Co-Chairs, with ties to the University (alumni, parents, and friends), substantive leadership profiles and active George Eastman Circle membership.

There are currently seven councils: Boston, Chicago, Metro New York, Philadelphia, Rochester, San Francisco, and Washington D.C. Plans for additional councils in other strategic locations are forthcoming.


The goal of the George Eastman Circle Leadership Council, with support from the University of Rochester’s Advancement Office, is to grow George Eastman Circle membership and awareness in the Council’s region by stewarding current members, reengaging members whose commitments are up for renewal, identifying new potential members and identifying and nominating new Council members.

Council Member Expectations:

UR Visible

  • Participate in Council meetings twice a year to meet with peers, report on activities, and strategize network growth.
  • Attend George Eastman Circle focused events twice a year. When appropriate, invite a guest who is interested in learning more about the George Eastman Circle. (Advancement liaison will help provide communication templates, alumni lists and other tools.)

UR Giving

  • Maintain active George Eastman Circle Membership (five-year pledge) while filling Council term.

UR Helping

  • Build relationships with potential supporters and George Eastman Circle members.
    • Identify and engage alumni and friends to help them become more connected to the University. Example: Provide names of classmates or community members who might be interested in becoming George Eastman Circle members.
    • Leverage personal/professional networks to open doors for the purpose of supporting the University. Example: Encourage alumni and friends to attend and participate in George Eastman Circle events.
    • With support from Advancement staff, acknowledge ten local George Eastman Circle members within your region and thank them for their support of the University of Rochester.
  • Willingness to host targeted events to promote the George Eastman Circle.
  • Identify and nominate potential Council members and volunteers. 
  • Serve as an Ambassador of the University of Rochester:
    • Promote the George Eastman Circle at relevant alumni gatherings, business and social meetings.
    • Consider being featured in potential marketing materials or testimonials.
    • Promote the University’s priorities, programs and events within region.
    • Make a case for support for the school/unit that resonates with your constituents.

Term of Service

Members serve a three-year term with the option to renew if mutually agreed upon by the volunteer and staff member. All councils are audited annually at the beginning of the calendar year to review term limits, inactivity, and renewals.


  • Council members have regular meetings and direct access to University Advancement Staff.
  • Members obtain information from Advancement before it is made public.
  • Advancement staff will communicate with Council as newsworthy information becomes available.
  • Early registration or other perks for regional events.


  • Increased Leadership Annual Giving to the University, a critical component of the annual funds which support initiatives ranging from student scholarship to medical research.
  • Greater alumni engagement and stronger regional networks created as the George Eastman Circle grows.

Support and Resources

  • Regular e-mail communication from Erin Bory, Associate Director of George Eastman Circle and liaison for Council members.
  • Progress reporting when Council work is quantifiable.
  • Regional Gift Officer in your region.