The main university fundraising arm on Monday named J. Bryan Benchoff to hold the dual role of president for the private LSU Foundation and vice president of institutional advancement for the LSU System.

Benchoff currently is vice president of university advancement for Ohio University and president and chief executive officer of the Ohio University Foundation, a dual position in which he has served for nearly six years. That university’s foundation has more than $600 million in assets.

LSU sought an opinion from the Louisiana Board of Ethics that would allow the head of LSU’s private endowment foundation, who answers to the foundation board, to also work as a university vice president, who answers to the LSU System.

LSU President F. King Alexander has said operating in a dual capacity would allow the foundation to better coordinate activities between the various fundraising arms of the system’s colleges and to energize fundraising efforts by better utilizing the deans of the various schools.

“Bryan has a proven record in a role that we will replicate at LSU with great success. We are eyeing a $1.2 billion-plus capital campaign, and Bryan’s leadership will serve to link philanthropy with research, education and outreach at every level,” Alexander said in a prepared statement announcing the appointment.

Investments in LSU’s $616.5 million endowment, which helps fund academic and capital projects, have been losing value over the past couple of years.

“Bryan is a dynamic, experienced leader with the expertise to successfully guide LSU’s advancement enterprise and inspire confidence among the university’s supporters,” Robert M. Stuart Jr., chairperson of the LSU Foundation Board of Directors, said in a prepared statement. “Bryan’s advancement career has spanned more than 37 years, and he is well-positioned to continue building a national-caliber advancement enterprise at LSU.”

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