Houston native returns as chief fundraising officer
PASADENA, Texas – Robert Cage has been named executive director of the San Jacinto College Foundation.
Cage comes to San Jacinto College with more than 15 years of fundraising and advancement experience. Most recently he served as director of development at the University of Colorado in Boulder, Colorado. He was at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, prior to that, where he helped start the regional development office.
“I am thrilled to welcome Robert to the San Jacinto College Foundation,” said Teri Crawford, San Jacinto College vice chancellor for external relations. “With nearly 15 years of experience in higher education fundraising, he is well versed in the many critical aspects of advancement including annual giving, major gifts, and planned giving. I look forward to working with him as we continue to support San Jacinto College students in every step of their educational journey.”
As the executive director, Cage will oversee all aspects of the Foundation. This includes direct responsibility for fundraising, securing new gifts, alumni relations, building relationships with the San Jacinto College community, and setting the strategic goals of the organization. The Foundation raises hundreds of thousands of dollars annually in support of student scholarships, and faculty and staff initiatives.
“In surveying the higher ed landscape across the Greater Houston area, you can only be impressed with the work San Jac has done in serving its community,” Cage said. “As I looked to continue my career growth and development in higher education, it was quickly evident that this institution is positioning itself to continue changing lives in East Harris County. The growth San Jac has made over the last 20 years is inspiring. To join the Foundation in working to align its efforts with that of the College feels like the perfect way to bring together my career experiences in a meaningful way.”
In addition to fundraising for the University of Colorado Natural Sciences departments prior to his appointment at San Jac, Cage also managed relationships with its alumni and donors locally and regionally in the Mid-Atlantic area of the country. His focus was on individual philanthropic support from $25,000 to $2 million. While in Boulder, he secured the very first endowed gift in Atmospheric & Oceanic Sciences department history, and CU’s renowed Department of Chemistry’s first-ever endowed chair gift. Before his time in Boulder, Cage served in various roles with the University of Nevada, Las Vegas Foundation where he established an annual giving affinity group aimed at developing and engaging younger aspiring board members.
Cage joins the San Jacinto College Foundation as the non-profit has recently kicked off a $10 million campaign in support of Promise @ San Jac scholars. The Promise @ San Jac scholarship provides a debt-free college credential to any high school senior that lives in the San Jacinto College taxing district and attends the College full-time, regardless of GPA and family income.
“At a time when demand is rapidly increasing for a skilled workforce, San Jac is positioned to lead the way in educating the next generation workforce in Southeast Texas,” added Cage. “With that as our guiding light, it is imminently important for the Foundation to continuously strengthen established relationships and begin to lay the groundwork for new growth. In the long-term, we want to grow our external presence among alumni and friends in the community and develop lifelong relationships as we do our part to assist San Jacinto College to ‘close the gap’ when it comes to education, economic, and workforce opportunity in this community.”
In addition to raising money for Promise @ San Jac scholarships, the Foundation also raises money for hundreds of scholarships that are available to new and current San Jacinto College students, as well as for the College’s food markets, student emergency fund, and faculty and staff initiatives.
Cage grew up in Southwest Houston. He holds a Master of Arts in higher education administration and a Bachelor of Liberal Arts from the University of Missouri, Kansas City, and an Associate of Science degree from Johnson County Community College.
About San Jacinto College
Surrounded by monuments of history, evolving industries, maritime enterprises of today, and the space age of tomorrow, San Jacinto College has served the people of East Harris County, Texas, since 1961. San Jacinto College is among the top five community colleges in the nation as designated by the Aspen Institute for Community College Excellence, and was named an Achieving the Dream Leader College of Distinction in 2020. The College spans five campuses serving approximately 41,000 credit and non-credit students annually, and offers more than 200 degrees and certificates across eight major areas of study that put students on a path to transfer to four-year institutions or enter the workforce. San Jacinto College’s impact on the region totals $1.3 billion in added income, which supports 13,044 jobs. The College is fiscally sound, holding bond ratings of AA and Aa2 by Standard & Poor’s and Moody’s.