August 22, 2022
The Associate Alumnae of Douglass College (AADC) celebrates its 100th Anniversary with a new status of independence and a continued commitment to serve alumnae and friends.
As of August 20, 2022, the Agreement previously signed by the AADC and the Rutgers Parties in July of 2016 officially expired. The AADC and Rutgers parties have mutually agreed to recognize the AADC as an independent 501(c)(3) organization that will continue to serve alumnae and foster new relationships within Rutgers University.
“We have been a proud, independent, self-supporting organization for 100 years,” declared AADC President Jeanne Fox ’75. “We look to the future with enthusiasm and excitement as we build on our strengths and expand our options to better serve our alumnae and explore new ways to partner with Douglass Residential College (DRC) and the University.”
The AADC will continue to deliver on our mission to develop and promote connections among Douglass alumnae by providing programs, services, networks and lifelong learning opportunities that represent the interests and needs of our diverse alumnae. These include such traditional programs as Reunion, the Zagoren and L’Hommedieu Lectures and the popular Victoria Dabrowski Schmidt ’42 Workplace & Professional Development Symposium. We will continue the AADC Alumnae Mentoring Program and “Smart Talks” series. A newer and growing program, the “AADC Excellence in Inclusion and Equity Initiative,” will remain a staple of AADC programming, and new programs will be added to expand our offerings.
The AADC provides prudent stewardship of the Douglass Fund and other endowed funds held by the AADC for the benefit of Douglass; distributions from these funds contribute financial support to Douglass and her students.
This new independence allows the AADC to:
- Raise funds without the prior limitations under the Agreement
- Continue to run programs for alumnae and invite students to applicable programs
- Employ staff and use volunteers to plan and execute programs and keep our mission in motion
- Expand our partnerships within the university to support women helping women.
- Communicate directly with future alumnae/students.
We expect to continue to operate on campus out of the Ruth Schilling Hennessy Alumnae Center (often referred to as “The Cottage”), for which we pay an occupancy fee. That building is a property of Rutgers University.
The AADC expects to work closely with its colleagues within Rutgers, including other alumni associations. “We also look forward to establishing a mutually beneficial relationship with the new dean of DRC once that hire is made,” Jeanne Fox said. “With no need for a formal agreement with Rutgers, all parties can work independently and collectively for the benefit of our respective constituencies.”
The AADC and the Douglass Fund Trustees retain fiduciary responsibility for the Douglass Fund, which was established by the AADC in 1969 as a Trust. The Fund was created for the benefit of the College and her students. An annual distribution from the unrestricted funds in the Douglass Fund is provided to the Dean of the College to fulfill her priorities. Restricted funds are distributed to be used according to the donor’s intent. For the last three years, the total amount of support each year to Douglass has exceeded $1.5 million.
The AADC will continue to conduct the AADC Annual Appeal to fund our programs and operations. In addition, the AADC plans to expand our Fellowship program to assist alumnae with financial support for graduate-level education.
“The AADC will continue to explore new ways to partner with the Rutgers Parties and the interim and new Dean of DRC to fulfill our mission and be an active and engaged part of Rutgers as a ‘beloved community,’” stated Valerie Anderson ’81, Executive Director of the AADC since 2011.
“We are energized about the new possibilities of our role now and in the coming years,” she added. “We are building on our theme, ‘Proud History to Bright Future,’ as we enter into the exciting next century of our alumnae sisterhood.”
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