Manulife Financial Outstanding Achievement Award - 2005

Donald E. Jones

Director, Alumni Services, University of Victoria

 Among the terms that his friends and colleagues use to describe Don Jones, those repeated most often are innovative, collegial, devoted and, particularly, a mentor. The Director of Alumni Services at the University of Victoria has, over his 14-year career at UVic, demonstrated consistent generosity of spirit and a “restless curiosity that has propelled advances in our profession,? to quote a supporting letter for his nomination to this award.

Don’s signature innovation was the creation, in 1998, of Canada’s first Alumni Online Network (known as the OLC), years before the concept of online communities took off. The OLC, which offers directories, mentoring, job postings and alumni news, in 2001 was awarded a CCAE gold Prix d’Excellence in the "E-Innovation in Alumni" category. The OLC excels at furthering the key purposes of alumni relations: cultivating and maintaining effective relationships with alumni, and among alumni of all member institutions, regardless of geography.

The OLC has blossomed into a Canada-wide asset that now boasts 14 institutional members comprising over 52,000 alumni, faculty and staff, served by 1400 online mentors. Never content with the status quo of even a highly successful program, Don Jones has continued to evolve the OLC, which now offers web-based forms, events management and communications software designed specifically for alumni relations. In 1996 Don Jones also established ALUM-CAN, the Canadian alumni professionals’ listserv, which now serves more than 250 members.

A committed volunteer, Don Jones was UVic’s United Way Campus Campaign Chair in both 2002 and 2003. His service to CCAE, both in the BC region and nationally, has been consistent, enthusiastic and always inspired by a sense of sharing with colleagues.

For his major contributions to the profession of alumni relations, his steadfast volunteerism within and beyond the advancement professions and his devotion to sharing with and mentoring others, the CCAE is very pleased to present Don Jones with the Manulife Financial Outstanding Achievement Award.