CASE Awards Graphic

Donors and alumni inspire award-winning work

By Pamela Edward

Donors and alumni inspire award-winning work

By Pamela Edward
This past year demanded innovation and adaptation from all of us. This was especially true of the way the University of Miami engaged, informed, and stewarded alumni and donors—and its new approaches have been recognized by our peers a record 11 times in the most recent higher education advancement awards cycle.

The University garnered 10 awards during the 2021 Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) District III virtual ceremony. One week later, the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) Group on Institutional Advancement bestowed a 2021 Silver Award for Excellence on the University of Miami Medicine magazine, the highest-ever showing for the Miller School of Medicine in this competition.

The awards recognized a wide range of fundraising, alumni and volunteer engagement, donor experience, and digital communications and marketing initiatives undertaken this past year in support of the U. The AAMC award, recognized the Miller School magazine’s editorial and design excellence and sudden pivot to a digital-only edition, which focused heavily on the fight against COVID-19 in the face of rapidly evolving storylines.

“In everything we do, our team never loses its core focus: our community, donors, and alumni, and how we can engage with them in ways that support the U’s mission and speak to their own interests and passions,” said Josh Friedman, senior vice president for Development and Alumni Relations. “These awards reflect that focus and are well deserved recognition of the innovation and creativity that our teams and volunteers bring. In what has been a year of unprecedented challenges, I couldn’t be prouder of the great work they are doing.”

The CASE District III awards received by the University included the following:

“Upping Our Game in Endowment Reporting”
Publications - Fundraising - Annual Reports and Fund Reports
“’Canes Communities - Transforming Alumni Grassroots Chapters into Campaign-Ready Communities”
Alumni Relations - Volunteer Engagement 
“A Day in the Life of a Nurse”
Videos - Fundraising
“Emergency Relief Campaign: Supporting Our Health Care Workers
Fundraising - Fundraising Pivot
“Redefining Student and Alumni Philanthropy One Tassel at a Time”
Fundraising - Annual Giving

“UM Black Alumni Society Celebrates Juneteenth” – June 19, 2020
Special Events - Special Event Pivot
“Advance!: Education, Inspiration & Engagement—With A Virtual Twist”
Diversity and Talent Management - Talent Management Initiatives
“Alumna Brings African American Art Songs to Light”
Writing - Feature, Profile or News - Less than 1,000 words

The University was also named a finalist for a national CASE Platinum Award in the category of Best Practices in Digital Communications, for “Pride Your Ride: Using Gamification and Lead Generation to Rebrand a Staple,” an imaginative social media campaign that engaged alumni in the redesign of the University’s specialty Florida license plate.

“A $100 Million Love Story,” a stewardship initiative honoring alumni and longtime supporters Patti and Allan Herbert on the occasion of their gift to name the Miami Herbert Business School, received Platinum Honorable Mention in the category of Best Practices in Communications and Marketing.

CASE ( is a global nonprofit association dedicated to educational advancement—alumni relations, communications, development, marketing, and advancement services.

AAMC ( is a not-for-profit association dedicated to transforming health through medical education, health care, medical research, and community collaborations.