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Skidmore College
Skidmore Retirees

David E. Long

David E. Long, the architect of Skidmore's modern fundraising program and longtime vice president at the College, died Feb. 7, 2012, at Saratoga Hospital.

Born March 6, 1931, in Crawfordsville, Ind., David graduated from Crawfordsville high school and enrolled at Wabash College, where he earned a bachelor's degree in English and German. After a stint in the U.S. Army, David enrolled in Indiana University, earning a master's degree in student personnel administration and a doctoral degree in higher education administration.

He worked at both Indiana and Miami University in Ohio before becoming the first dean of students at MacMurray College in Jacksonville, Ill., in 1961, at a time when the school was transitioning from a women's college to coeducation.

David joined the Skidmore community in 1968 as vice president for external affairs, coordinating the activities of an expanding development staff in the areas of annual, planned, corporate, and foundation giving, as well as the College's public relations and publications programs.

Former Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs David Marcell, who served on the President's Staff with David, said, "Dave Long was the principal architect of the modern development and alumni relations program at Skidmore. He knew how to manage donors and was critical to creating the strategies that brought the capital that Skidmore so desperately needed." 

Skidmore's resources increased significantly under David's leadership. Highlights of his service included the successful completion of a National Endowment for the Humanities challenge grant, which resulted in nearly $2 million in endowment funds. He also managed Skidmore's first national fundraising effort, the three-year Wide Horizon Campaign, which raised more than $13 million in annual and capital gifts upon completion in 1982.

Karl Broekhuizen, former vice president for business affairs and treasurer, called David "the first really professional development officer at the College. I found him to be a great colleague. He was an 'old-line' development officer in terms of keeping in touch with alumni and writing personal thank you notes to them. He was a gentleman and a gentle person."

David was appointed special assistant to the president in 1984 and retired from Skidmore in 1988. Upon his retirement, the College's trustees presented him with a framed map of the Jonsson Campus, highlighting the buildings for which he had spearheaded funding.

His retirement was short lived. Asked by Norman Smith, then-president of Wagner College, to become vice president for development, David assumed responsibility for all fundraising at the 1,600-student college on Staten Island. At the time, Dr. Smith called David "one of the stars of small-college development. His arrival at Wagner marks an exciting new chapter for the college." David was at Wagner for six years.

David also served a year as consultant in development for Yaddo Corporation. He was an active member of the Saratoga Springs community, serving on the Wesley Health Care Center Foundation Board and the Saratoga Hospital Foundation Board. He chaired and served as a member of the planning committee of the Palamountain Scholarship Fund Benefit. He was a member of the Saratoga Springs United Methodist Church, where he was an originator of the Madrigal Banquet, and was active with Rotary International.

David's survivors include his wife of 54 years, Joann (Jody); his daughter Susan Long Moyer, a 1982 Skidmore graduate, her husband Jack, and their children, Margaret and Matthew of Saratoga Springs; and daughter Melissa and her husband Robert Drislane and their children, Connor, Emma, and Rachel, of Guilderland.