Curtis R. Simic

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President Emeritus

Curt Simic

Curtis R. Simic
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Curt Simic is widely recognized as a national leader in fundraising for higher education, management of foundations, and foundation-institution relationships. He has more than 40 years' experience in all areas of development and alumni and external relations, at both public and private institutions of higher education.

As president of IUF from 1988 to 2008, Mr. Simic was the chief development officer for IU, responsible for oversight of all fundraising in a multi-campus development operation with centralized and decentralized functions; investment of the endowment; and development-related administrative services and infra-structure.

Under his leadership, fundraising for IU grew from $70 million a year from 60,000 donors to more than $270 million from over 120,000 donors. Since 1990, IU has ranked almost every year in the top 20, or top 2%, of colleges and universities in the nation in total voluntary support, the combined total of gift and non-governmental grant funds received by an institution in any given year.

The endowment has grown from approximately $214 million to $1.6 billion. IU consistently ranks in the top 15 among public universities in the U.S. in the market value of its endowment.

Beginning his career at IUF as director of the annual fund and of the Student Foundation, Mr. Simic also served Yale University and the universities of Tennessee, Alabama, Oregon, and California-Berkeley, where he directed all fundraising efforts for the campus, including the largest fundraising campaign ever conducted at a public university at that time.

The recipient of many awards and honors, he is a presenter and author on development topics and has been an advisor and consultant to many colleges, universities, and non-profit organizations. He has authored book chapters, articles, and brochures about the relationship between foundations and their educational institutions, the fundraising responsibilities of foundation and of institutional governing board members, faculty relations, and funding mechanisms for foundations.

Professional affiliations and service


  • Finish Line Youth Foundation
  • IU Art Museum
  • Indiana Golf Foundation, Board of Directors
  • Jacobs School of Music Deans Advisory Council
  • School of Public Health Bloomington, Deans Council


  • Dean of Faculty and faculty member, Big Ten Fund Raisers Institute
  • Board of Governors, Indiana University Center on Philanthropy
  • Board of Directors, National Art Museum of Sport
  • Institutionally Related Foundations Planning Committee, Association of Governing Boards of Universities and Colleges (AGB)
  • National Committee for Institutionally Related Foundations, Council for the Advancement and Support of Education (CASE)
  • National Board of Trustees, Council for the Advancement and Support of Education (CASE)
  • Boards in Districts III, V, and VIII, Council for the Advancement and Support of Education
  • Board of Directors, Catholic Community Foundation, Archdiocese of Indianapolis
  • Wyman Foundation Board of Directors
  • Indiana State Museum Board of Directors
  • Director, Western Golf Association

Award and honors

  • Distinguished Hoosier Award, presented by former Indiana Governor Frank O'Bannon
  • CASE/Commonfund Institutionally Related Foundation Awards: Professional Leadership Award: Inaugural recipient in the category of foundations with more than $100 million in assets
  • Frank L. Ashmore Award for Service to CASE and the Advancement Profession
  • Herman B Wells Legacy Award, Indiana University Foundation
  • Sagamore of the Wabash, presented by Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels
  • The University Medal, Indiana University's highest honor
  • Thomas J. Hennessy Award, IU Residence Halls Alumni Association
  • Thomas Hart Benton Mural Medallion, Indiana University
  • CASE Crystal Apple Teaching Award
  • Indiana University Distinguished Alumni Service Award


  • BS, Indiana University
  • Graduate work in higher education, counseling, and guidance, Indiana University

Student activities and honors:

  • President, Indiana University Student Foundation
  • Elected as one of the "Top Ten Seniors" by Sigma Delta Chi
  • Little 500 Bicycle Race: Rider and coach, Dodds House
  • Honorary member, Little 500 Rider Hall of Fame