Local News

Monday, Jun 16 2014 08:49 PM

Former resident to lead team at ASU

Former Tehachapi resident Debra Williams, a communications and management professional who served as director of communications for The Pennsylvania State University's first billion-dollar fundraising campaign, has been appointed vice president of communications and marketing for the ASU Foundation for A New American University. She joins the foundation team immediately.

From July 2012 to April 2013, Williams was Interim General Manager of the Tehachapi Valley Recreation and Parks District. Previously she general manager of Woodward West Action Sports and Gymnastics Camp in Tehachapi, California, the second-largest such camp in the U.S. During a 10-year career at the camp, Williams oversaw the con struction of the 19-acre, $7 million action sports and gymnastics facility that today attracts nearly 3,000 Olympic and X Games hopefuls from across the country and around the world annually.

After leaving TVRPD Williams started a consulting firm, Pennyworth, addressing the leadership, management and communications needs of a variety of businesses and organizations, including governmental agencies, private schools, festivals and agri-tourism enterprises.

"Debbie Williams brings to the ASU Foundation great experience and success in her career as a communicator," said foundation Chief Development Officer Dan Saftig in making the announcement. "She takes over a team of marketing and communications professionals at an important time in our history as we focus on the advancement of ASU, its students, faculty and programs. Her background in education and fundraising communications will be of tremendous benefit to the foundation and those who support ASU through their generous philanthropy."

Williams, who earned her MFA, bachelor's and associate's degree from Penn State, is an accomplished writer whose work has appeared in numerous regional and national publications.

"My background in both higher education and private industry seemed like the perfect combination for the ambitious and entrepreneurial spirit at ASU," said Williams. "I was immediately drawn to the dynamic, visionary culture of the university, and I see proud and motivated people across ASU. I am excited to be a part of that environment, working with very talented, committed people."

Williams will direct a communications and marketing team at the ASU Foundation that includes editorial services, creative services, Internet marketing and social media, video production, and project management.

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