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Zabala tapped to head LU advancement

Juan ZabalaJuan Zabala has been named vice president for university advancement, Lamar University officials announced today. He will continue in his role as chief executive officer of the Lamar University Foundation. 

"With Juan’s 27 years of experience in higher education, many of those dedicated to advancement, he was a natural selection from a highly competitive pool of applicants,” says LU President Kenneth Evans. "He has my every confidence as he envisions the Office of Advancement's future and the integral part it will play within the growth of our university.”

Zabala has served in varied capacities at Lamar University since 2003, including executive director of alumni affairs and advancement services, associate vice president for university advancement and executive director of the Lamar University Foundation. Prior to his time at LU, he was at the University of Texas in Austin for more than 15 years. During this time, Zabala worked at the institution’s College of Engineering, School of Law Library and within the School of Law itself as the assistant dean for administration and executive director of the Law School Foundation from 1993 to 2003. 

Presently, Zabala is working towards his doctorate in education in Educational Leadership. He holds degrees from Brigham Young University Idaho and Sul Ross State University and an MBA from Lamar University. Additionally, he serves as the Texas State University System legislative liaison as well as on many LU committees and councils. In the Southeast Texas community, Zabala is on the board of the Southeast Texas Food Bank, Some Other Place and the United Way of Beaumont and North Jefferson County while also serving as a deacon at Calder Baptist Church and as a volunteer with Special Olympics and the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation.

Terry Garth, president of Cheyenne Corp. and search committee member, explains the search process for this critical position. “It was important for Lamar University to conduct a national search for the vice president for university advancement,” he says. “Our dynamic new president needs to surround himself with leaders who have substantial and broad experience in their fields. How fortunate we are that our expansive search yielded a vice president who also has strong connections with Lamar University alumni and donors and in the communities in which they live and work.”