De Graffenreid appointed SVP for communications

Photo/Brian Strickland

Ellen de Graffenreid, an integrated communications and marketing leader with deep experience in higher education and the high technology sector, has been appointed senior vice president for communications.

“I am thrilled to welcome Ellen to campus and to the executive team,” said President Fred Lawrence. “She is an experienced and skilled communicator with an impressive background in academia, health care and the corporate sector. I know she will have a tremendous impact in raising Brandeis’ profile across the country and around the world.”

As senior vice president for communications, de Graffenreid will oversee all communications initiatives, including media relations, government relations and public affairs, public relations, advertising, Web services and publications. She will also work closely with the administration and faculty to develop communications programs designed to achieve specific goals across the university.

De Graffenreid says she is excited to work with the Brandeis community to tell the university’s story.

“I am looking forward to collaborating with Brandeis’ dynamic leadership, impressive faculty and staff, and engaged students to communicate what makes the university special. Brandeis’ commitment to making the world a better place and addressing its most pressing problems resonates with a wide variety of audiences beyond the sphere of higher education.”

Prior to joining Brandeis, de Graffenreid was director of communications and marketing at the University of North Carolina Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center, where she oversaw public relations for a $220 million research enterprise, developed an integrated print, web and social media program engaging donors, community supporters and cancer advocates, and led physician and consumer marketing for the clinical services of UNC Cancer Care. 

De Graffenreid was previously director of communications and marketing at the University of Louisville Health Sciences Center, where she led integrated marketing for the schools of medicine, dentistry, nursing and public health. Her higher education experience also includes serving as director of communications and donor relations at the Washington State University Foundation. Her teams have garnered multiple awards from the Council for Advancement and Support of Education and the American Association of Medical Colleges’ Group on Institutional Advancement.

Before entering higher education, de Graffenreid worked in several different capacities for the Hewlett-Packard Corporation including market research, product development, marketing and public relations strategy, and competitive intelligence in a multi-billion dollar business unit of HP. She has also worked as a consultant for numerous clients in the technology industry. 

She has provided pro-bono public relations and marketing consulting for Planned Parenthood of Louisville, the Louisville e-Health Initiative, Adolescent Pregnancy Prevention Program and Fearrington Cares.

De Graffenreid earned a B.A. from Indiana University in 1990, where she was elected to Phi Beta Kappa. She received an M.A. in Russian and Soviet History from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1993, and an M.B.A. from the University of North Carolina’s Kenan-Flagler Business School in 1998.

Categories: General

Return to the BrandeisNOW homepage