American Friends of The Hebrew University (AFHU) announced that Beth Asnien McCoy has been appointed the organization’s new National Executive Director. Ms. McCoy will succeed Mr. Peter T. Willner, who is stepping down after serving as National Executive Director for the past 12 years. Ms. McCoy assumes her new role effective immediately.

“AFHU is grateful to Peter Willner for his years of dedicated leadership. Peter strengthened our organization and helped us to raise vital support for The Hebrew University of Jerusalem,” stated Daniel I. Schlessinger, President of AFHU. “Beth McCoy, as our new National Executive Director, brings a wealth of knowledge about fundraising and the American Jewish community to the position. Beth’s passion for The Hebrew University and commitment to AFHU’s mission is remarkable; we welcome her inspiring leadership.”

Ms. McCoy joined AFHU in 2003 as Executive Director of the Southeast Region, where she initiated and led AFHU’s Palm Beach mission to Israel, among other achievements. She launched the Annual Leadership Educational Forum (ALEF) in Palm Beach, Florida, showcasing Hebrew University expertise and increasing public awareness of the university’s contributions to Israel and the world.

In 2007, Ms. McCoy became AFHU’s National Director of Development. In this leadership role, she supervised AFHU’s regional Executive Directors and spearheaded high-visibility fundraising campaigns in support of The Hebrew University’s priorities on all four campuses. Ms. McCoy has played a pivotal role in advancing the national campaign, which has raised an average of $50 million annually.

Her efforts have included focusing on major and principal gifts and revitalizing planned giving outreach. She established a close working relationship between AFHU and Hebrew University’s leadership. This fruitful partnership, which also brought together AFHU lay leaders, supporters, and the organization’s professional team, has propelled the work of the Robert H. Smith Faculty of Agriculture, Food and Environment, the Edmond and Lily Safra Center for Brain Sciences, and the Mandel School for Advanced Studies in the Humanities, among other initiatives. Ms. McCoy helped to build AFHU’s National Campaign Committee and Regional Campaign Committees, strengthening ties between leaders and supporters from diverse U.S. communities.

“For more than a decade, Beth McCoy has devoted her energies to sustaining and strengthening The Hebrew University’s research and academic community. We have come to know Beth as a dear friend, a dedicated colleague and a true partner in our quest to keep The Hebrew University of Jerusalem in the forefront of higher education in Israel and worldwide,” stated Professor Menahem Ben-Sasson, President of The Hebrew University of Jerusalem. “Beth’s many years of service in the philanthropic arena are widely appreciated, and her leadership reflects the American Jewish community’s passion and commitment to Israel’s well-being.”

Ms. McCoy has twenty-five years of experience working on behalf of cause-related missions. Prior to joining AFHU, she served as the Arizona Regional Director of Development for the Anti-Defamation League. She has past experience serving as the Executive Director of the Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation of America (Arizona) and as the Tri-State Regional Director of the Muscular Dystrophy Association (New York). Ms. McCoy received her Bachelor of Science from Hofstra University in Hempstead, New York. Married to Mr. Dennis McCoy, the couple has two sons.

“It is a privilege and honor to be named as the National Executive Director of American Friends of The Hebrew University,” stated Ms. McCoy. “The success of AFHU comes from a collaborative effort between dedicated lay leadership, truly generous supporters and talented staff throughout the United States. Our partnership strengthens Israel and advances research and higher learning at The Hebrew University of Jerusalem. I am proud of all that we achieve together, and of our wonderful friends and colleagues at the University.”