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James Tinney

Last modified: Wednesday, January 23, 2002

Beckley named president of IU Alumni Association

NOTE: A photo of Ken Beckley suitable for publication is available on the Web at (for Web sites) or (for print).

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Kenneth A. Beckley, the long-time executive vice president and corporate spokesperson for Indianapolis-based H.H. Gregg Appliances & Electronics and former director of university relations at Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis, has been named president and chief executive officer of the Indiana University Alumni Association.

Beckley was the strong and unanimous recommendation of a 10-member search committee headed by IU Vice President and Chief Administrative Officer Terry Clapacs. Beckley was appointed by IU President Myles Brand.

"Ken has been a leader in the Indiana business community for many years. He has also been a great friend and supporter of Indiana University. It is a tribute to our Alumni Association that we were able to attract a candidate with such outstanding credentials for this important job," Brand said.

The IU Alumni Association, with a membership of about 100,000, is one of the five largest such organizations in the nation. Beckley will succeed Jerry Tardy, who died in September. Tardy had led the organization for 14 years.

Beckley signed a five-year contract. The effective date of the appointment is Feb. 1.

"I have long admired the staff of the Alumni Association, and it is a thrill to become a teammate with them in serving alumni and the university," Beckley said. "As an association, we need to do our best to meet the needs of a diverse body of alumni of all eight of IU's campuses, and become an even stronger multi-campus organization.

"The alumni of this university can be its best and most effective advocates. I hope we can continue to develop that aspect of IUAA's mission," Beckley said.

Beckley said his other major goals as president and CEO of the association would be to ensure continued progress toward diversity among IUAA staff and volunteer leadership, to involve more alumni in serving the university, to increase the dues-paying membership of the association and to expand student involvement with the IUAA.

Beckley, 61, received his bachelor's degree in radio and television from IU in 1962. He had a 14-year career as a broadcast journalist in Terre Haute, Asheville, N.C., and Indianapolis. He served as IUPUI's first director of university relations from 1977 to 1983, before joining H.H. Gregg.

He was hired as the company's vice president for advertising and public relations. During his tenure there, he served as company spokesperson and dealt with marketing, sales, human resources, public relations, media relations, customer relations and community relations issues.

He became well-known as the spokesman for H.H. Gregg in its advertising. He retired from the company in December.

Beckley also has played an active role at Indiana University over the years. In 1998, he received the President's Award, the highest honor bestowed by the IU Alumni Association. He is the former national chair of the Alumni Association, serves on the IUB Athletics Committee, chaired the Armstrong Student Foundation Endowment Campaign, served on the Board of Advisors of the Student Foundation, and is a member of the board of directors of the Advanced Research & Technology Institute (ARTI).

"I've been very much impressed by Ken's quiet dedication to the institution. He has a great ability to listen and to lead by helping people work together," said Michael McGerr, College of Arts and Sciences associate dean for graduate education and program development, who served with Beckley on the IU Bloomington Athletics Committee.

Beckley has received a number of honors for his public and professional service, including the CASPER award for meritorious service from the Greater Indianapolis United Way/Community Service Council in 2000. Also in 2000, he was named Advertising Person of the Year by the Indiana Federation of Advertising Agencies.

A native of Lynnwood, Ind., he has been married to Audrey (Hofelich) for 37 years. She also is an IU graduate. Ken and Audrey have two children and six grandchildren.