Richard Trollinger has been named the second annual recipient of the Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy Distinguished Alumni Award. The vice president for college relations at Centre College in Danville, Kentucky, Trollinger is one of the nation's top experts in educational fundraising.
Trollinger earned a Master of Arts in Philanthropic Studies from the IU Lilly Family School of Philanthropy in 2002. He also earned a bachelor's degree at Emory and Henry College, a Master of Education in Higher Education Administration from Vanderbilt and a Ph.D. in Educational Policy Studies from the University of Kentucky.
“Richard embodies the marriage of practice and scholarship which is a distinct characteristic of Lilly Family School of Philanthropy alumni. We are very proud to follow his long and distinguished career and to name him as our 2016 Distinguished Alumni Award recipient,” said Ann Boyd-Stewart, assistant dean of development and alumni relations.
Trollinger has dedicated more than 40 years to educational fundraising. Prior to his tenure at Centre College, he served in several roles at Emory and Henry College, including vice president for development and external affairs. He was also an admissions counselor, director of alumni affairs and the first director of development at his alma mater.
He is credited with improving Emory and Henry College's alumni giving from $53,000 in 1974 to more than $1 million in 1993 before transitioning to Centre College in 1994.
While at Centre College, Trollinger has positioned the college as one of the nation's leaders in philanthropic giving. In a recent campaign, Centre exceeded its initial fundraising goal of $120 million by more than $49 million. Gifts and pledges during this For a More Perfect Centre campaign ultimately totaled $169,374,192 at its 2007 completion.
More recently, his efforts produced an overall alumni participation rate of an impressive 49 percent, one of the highest giving percentages in the country.
Trollinger is the co-author of Philanthropy and American Higher Education, which describes how philanthropic support of higher education is integral to the character of colleges and universities. The full collection of Trollinger's professional achievements and his personal commitment to giving can be traced back in part to his experiences with the IU Lilly Family School of Philanthropy.
"The work done by the Lilly Family School of Philanthropy contains the power to change the world and, most importantly, to change the world for good," said Trollinger when he accepted his alumni award on Oct. 6. "It is indeed an honor to be associated with an institution that sponsors such important research, that teaches students to be both scholars and practitioners, and that sustains its alumni with information and inspiration throughout their careers."
Trollinger currently chairs the board of directors for the Danville-Boyle Economic Development Partnership in Kentucky. He has also served as a board member and chair of the Kentucky School for the Deaf Charitable Foundation.
The Distinguished Alumni Award was created in 2015 by the Lilly Family School of Philanthropy’s alumni board to assist the school in recognizing significant achievement in the fields of philanthropic research, practice and academic study. For over a quarter of a century, people of diverse talents have been educated by the school and its predecessor, the Center on Philanthropy at Indiana University. The inaugural Distinguished Alumni Award was received by Genevieve G. Shaker, M.A. ’98, associate dean for development and external affairs at the IU School of Liberal Arts and assistant professor of philanthropic studies in the IU Lilly Family School of Philanthropy.
Award recipients must have a minimum of 10 years of experience in the field of philanthropic research, practice or academic study; be at least five years removed from their graduation; demonstrate significant professional achievement and leadership in furthering philanthropy; and provide leadership and service within professional associations, philanthropic organizations or to the school or IUPUI.
About the Lilly Family School of Philanthropy
The Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy is dedicated to improving philanthropy to improve the world by training and empowering students and professionals to be innovators and leaders who create positive and lasting change in the world. The school offers a comprehensive approach to philanthropy through its academic, research and international programs and through The Fund Raising School, Lake Institute on Faith & Giving and the Women’s Philanthropy Institute.