Alumni Spotlight

Two-time alumnus George Corton named FIU Vice President of Development and Innovation Philanthropy

George Corton
George Corton, a fundraising professional with more than 18 years of experience, has been promoted to Vice President of Development and Innovation Philanthropy at Florida International University.

Corton, an alumnus who received his bachelor’s and MBA degrees from FIU, has served the university for nearly 16 years, including as Chief Development Officer/ Senior Associate Vice President for Development for the FIU Foundation since 2017.

“As a two-time graduate of FIU, it’s a privilege to serve this institution and make a difference in the lives of our students and community. I am honored to be elevated to this new role, and I’m grateful to be able to play a part in the incredible momentum our FIU is experiencing,” Corton said.

Under Corton’s direction, a team of 36 professionals achieved record-breaking fundraising totals, including $114.2 million in fiscal year 2020-2021, as part of the $750 million Next Horizon: The Campaign for FIU. He also helped found the historic FIU CasaCuba initiative, the only center of its kind focused on the preservation of Cuban culture and study of Cuban affairs.

In his new capacity, Corton will direct three strategic initiatives that will power the university’s development enterprise to new heights:

  • Growing Major and Principal Legacy Giving: These gifts have been a significant source of funding in the Next Horizon campaign, and planning is underway to increase this area of giving.
  • Innovation and Miami Tech: The FIU Foundation will take advantage of transforming and growing its capacity through venture capital philanthropy and social impact bonds, the development of alternative revenue streams, and leveraging the burgeoning Miami Tech movement.
  • FIU Foundation Office of Inclusive Philanthropy (FOIP): Co-founded by Corton earlier this year, this team of development officers and other partners is focused on philanthropic investment in diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives.
Corton remains focused as well in other areas, notably annual giving, middle-level donor giving and constituent development.

“George bleeds blue and gold,” said FIU President Mark B. Rosenberg. “He is all in for our hard-working students and our innovative faculty. George embodies Panther pride.  In his new role, he will help take the FIU Foundation and our university to the next levels. We are excited for him.”

Corton launched his fundraising career at FIU, serving as Council of 100 Liaison, Director of Corporate Relations, and Director of Development for the College of Law.  Prior to returning to FIU in 2011 as Assistant Vice President of Development, he served as Senior Director of Development at the University of Miami School of Business Administration for three years.

“It has been an honor to work alongside George in an organization that is fueling transformational opportunities,” said Humberto “Burt” Cabañas, chairman and CEO of Benchmark Hospitality, Inc. and chair of the FIU Foundation Board of Directors. “With George’s outstanding leadership guiding a devoted team to enact innovative strategies, I look forward to new records of achievement and impact for our FIU Foundation and university.”

“George has done so much for our university, helping countless students and immeasurably elevating our FIU. Among his greatest strengths is his collaborative mindset. His ability to bring donors and the academic community together to make a difference for our FIU and our community is an invaluable asset,” said Howard R. Lipman, CEO of the FIU Foundation. “This well-deserved promotion is in recognition of his phenomenal leadership of philanthropic efforts at our FIU.”

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