Maura McGinnity will lead development and external relations efforts at UC Berkeley's Division of Computing, Data Science, and Society. (Photo/ Maura McGinnity)

Maura McGinnity has recently been appointed senior assistant dean for development at UC Berkeley’s Division of Computing, Data Science, and Society (CDSS). Her first day at Berkeley will be Feb. 21.

McGinnity will lead CDSS development and external relations as the senior staff member responsible for engaging donors with outreach and relationship strategies in support of an innovative vision. Launched in 2018, CDSS at Berkeley provides accessible and equitable educational opportunities in computing and data science and catalyzes groundbreaking research to meet society’s greatest challenges in health and biomedicine, climate and sustainability, and human welfare and social justice. The division is on a pathway to become the first new college at Berkeley in more than 50 years, with a decision from the UC Board of Regents expected this year.

“I’m excited to have the opportunity to team up with the talented faculty, students and staff at Berkeley and engage philanthropic partners to help realize the interdisciplinary vision of Computing, Data Science, and Society to catalyze discovery in new and exciting ways that benefit humanity,” said McGinnity. 

Reporting to Jennifer Chayes, associate provost for CDSS and dean of the School of Information, McGinnity will be responsible for setting the strategic direction for the CDSS development team, supporting the CDSS advisory board, and partnering with division leaders on interdisciplinary programs and initiatives. She will also have a dotted reporting line to University Development and Alumni Relations (UDAR) and closely collaborate with development officers across campus.

Kristen Williams, who had served as interim chief development officer for CDSS since March 2022, will assist McGinnity with the transition to Berkeley and continue to work collaboratively with CDSS and UDAR in her role as assistant dean of external affairs at the School of Information. 

“We are indebted to Kristen for her incredible success in the interim role, and we are absolutely thrilled to welcome Maura to the CDSS team as we work together to accelerate the reach and impact of our educational and research activities,” said Chayes. “We especially look forward to Maura’s leadership in growing donor outreach and engagement opportunities that support current and future groundbreaking research and education at the Gateway and across campus. CDSS at Berkeley is leading the way by infusing computing and data science with human-centered perspectives and purpose.” 

McGinnity joins CDSS from Stanford University, where she most recently served as senior director of development for the Office of the Vice Provost and Dean of Research. In close partnership with faculty, colleagues and donors, McGinnity developed and collaborated on engagement strategies over the last 10 years that have led to transformative gifts in support of several university interdisciplinary institutes and endeavors, including the Wu Tsai Neurosciences Institute; Sarafan ChEM-H (Chemistry, Engineering, and Medicine for Human Health); the Sapp Center for Science Teaching and Learning; the Wu Tsai Human Performance Alliance; Stanford Bio-X; the Knight Initiative for Brain Resilience; and Stanford HAI (Human-centered Artificial Intelligence). 

“I am thrilled to have Maura join Berkeley’s advancement community and the talented CDSS team,” said Julie Hooper, Vice Chancellor for University Development and Alumni Relations. “She brings a wealth of strategic engagement from her tenure at Stanford and I know from my conversations with her that she will be an incredible asset to the team. I want to also thank Associate Vice Chancellor Michelle McClellan for leading the search that resulted in Maura's appointment at Berkeley.”

While at Stanford, McGinnity also significantly increased endowment support for the Stanford Bio-X seed grant and fellowship programs and three consortium funds that accelerate pioneering ideas, cross-disciplinary research and team science. She previously served as director of Stanford’s university major gifts team for California, providing strategic leadership coaching for seven staff members focused on building relationships with alumni, parents and friends. McGinnity has more than 25 years of development, strategy and marketing experience in academia and industry and holds a master’s degree in business administration from Simon School of Business at the University of Rochester. She serves on advisory boards for the Strategic Initiatives Group for Advancement Professionals, Whitman College Athletics, LeaderXpress and Palo Alto Partners in Education.