Juan Baena Appointed as Bennington College’s Senior Director of Alumni Relations and Annual Giving
Juan Baena has been named Senior Director of Alumni Relations and Annual Giving at Bennington College. As a member of the Institutional Advancement team, Baena will report to Associate Vice President for Institutional Advancement Allison Gomes.
"We are thrilled to welcome Juan," said Gomes. “He brings strong strategic oversight, deep experience, and knowledge learned from many years working with alumni, programs, and volunteer boards, and we are confident in his ability to energize our constituent relations and annual giving programming.”
Baena joins Bennington from EverTrue, a donor experience platform where he has been an implementation partner for nearly two years. Prior to that, Baena amassed an impressive track record in alumni relations, serving for fifteen years in progressively responsible roles within institutional advancement at Williams College in Williamstown, Massachusetts.
At Williams, Baena most recently served as the Associate Director of Alumni Relations and Director of Digital Engagement, responsible for social media and digital communications on all alumni platforms and channels. As a part of his work, he did a cross country storytelling trip to celebrate the alumni bicentennial. In addition, Baena staffed the Executive Committee of the Society of Alumni, led a project that won a 2021 CASE Circle of Excellence Award for creation of an alumni bicentennial website, and collaborated on strategic planning for identity-based network initiatives.
“My journey in higher education was deeply shaped and possible due to the philanthropic support of others who came before me,” said Baena. “And I want to be able to elevate this special proposition in a community that is growing and energized by one another. I am enlightened by the intimate nature of this community and how students, faculty, and staff are committed to one another. I am excited to be part of Bennington's next chapter."
Baena earned a bachelor’s in political science and Latino/a studies from Williams College in 2007. He received both a graduate certificate in business administration and a master’s of business administration from Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts in 2018 and 2020, respectively. In addition, Baena has served in volunteer roles for the Williamstown Community Chest, the Williams College Latino/a Alumni Network, and the Berkshire Immigrant Center. He is also a freelance photographer.
“I look forward to the opportunity to work with a community of alumni, parents, and friends that want to connect with one another across generations while supporting current and future students,” Baena said. “It's this sense of shared commitment to one another that makes a positive impact on the future.”
Baena will begin his new role on November 20, 2023.
About Bennington College
Bennington College is a liberal arts college in southwestern Vermont that has distinguished itself as a vanguard institution within American higher education. It was the first to include the visual and performing arts in a liberal arts education. It is the only college to require that its students spend a term—every year—at work in the world. Bennington students work intensively with faculty to forge individual educational paths around their driving questions and interests.
Rooted in an abiding faith in the talent, imagination, and responsibility of the individual, Bennington invites students to pursue and shape their own intellectual inquiries and, in doing so, to discover the profound interconnection of things. Learn more at bennington.edu.