The UNM Foundation and The University of New Mexico have announced that after nine years as CEO and president of the UNM Foundation, Henry Nemcik is planning his retirement. He remains in his current role until the new CEO is hired and the transition is complete. 

Nemcik had originally planned to retire last year. However, at the request of the Foundation Board of Trustees and then-University President Chaouki Abdallah, Nemcik remained in his position an additional year to ensure that the new University president would be included in the search process, as well as to ensure a successful transition.

Henry Nemcik
Henry Nemcik

“For more than 30 years, Henry has dedicated himself to helping higher education institutions raise private funds for the betterment of the institution and for the benefit of the students those institutions served,” said Laurie Moye, UNM Foundation Board of Trustee Chair. “For nearly a decade, Henry has been instrumental in transforming the UNM Foundation into the high-performing, top-tier organization that it is today.”

During Nemcik’s tenure at the UNM Foundation, the endowment has grown from $258.9 million to $454.9 million and the Foundation has raised an average of $88 million annually in cash and pledges for the benefit of the University. Additionally, Nemcik has helped UNM meet the Changing Worlds 2020: The Campaign for UNM milestone goal of $1 billion in private support. He personally raised over $30 million in gifts for UNM, ensured the Foundation met or exceeded its annual fundraising goals, established internal metrics and processes to ensure the Foundation performed at its highest capacity, and successfully worked with four University presidents. During a 2018 assessment, the Association of Governing Boards recognized the UNM Foundation as a top-tier organization.

“Henry’s experience and knowledge has been invaluable to UNM,” said Garnett S. Stokes, UNM President. “Private philanthropy is vital to the continued success of public universities and Henry has helped create a strong foundation that will be critical to the future success of UNM and the community we serve.”

Nemcik joined the UNM Foundation in August 2010 as president and CEO. Prior to the Foundation, he successfully led two $1 billion comprehensive campaigns at two universities. He served as the vice president of development and alumni relations and president of the foundation at the University of Tennessee system from 2005 to 2010. Prior to UT, he was associate vice president for development and campaign director at Texas A&M for 17 years.

“It has been an honor to work with our donors, Foundation staff, University leadership, deans, faculty, board members, health care providers, athletic staff and coaches, researchers, academic, programmatic and unit staff, community and organizational partners, volunteers, and many others,” said Nemcik. “The Foundation and University staff are the most dedicated individuals I have had the privilege of working with, and the donors are some of the most generous and loyal individuals I have met in my career. I am grateful for the opportunity and know that the Foundation and University will continue to have a successful partnership for years to come.”

The Foundation Board Chair has established a committee to coordinate the CEO search. The committee is comprised of both Foundation and University leadership, emphasizing the partnership and collaboration between the University and Foundation. The search committee members are: Laurie Moye (Foundation Board of Trustees Chair), Randy Velarde (Foundation Board of Trustees Vice-Chair/Chair-Elect), Bill Lang (Foundation Board of Trustees Assistant Treasurer), Kimberly Peña (Foundation Board of Trustees Secretary), Felicia Finston (Foundation Board of Trustees Associate Vice Chair), Ryan Mummert (Foundation Board of Trustees Associate Vice Chair), Michelle Coons (Foundation Board of Trustees Immediate Past Chair), Garnett S. Stokes (UNM President), Marron Lee (UNM Board of Regents), Ava Lovell (UNM Health Sciences Center Executive Officer for Finance & Administration), and Geraldine Forbes Isais (UNM School of Architecture + Planning Dean; Foundation Board of Trustees member).

“The success of the Foundation is key to that of the University,” said Stokes. “I look forward to working with our Foundation volunteers and University leaders in this process.” 

The Foundation will hire a professional search firm to assist with the process. The goal is to hire a new CEO to start July 2019.